Work with objections

    What do people who are afraid to introduce a corporate social network say?


    We are engaged in the implementation of corporate social networks, primarily organizational, non-technological, and 80% of this is work on managing change. Often, in order to sell the implementation service, one first has to sell the idea of ​​the corporate social network to the client. When I talk about this topic with potential customers and just with my friends, almost no one cares about the issue. People are interested in the topic. But I very, very often hear various objections: that there is a risk of misuse of the corporate social network; that she is not for work; someone interrupting me begins to talk about their relationship with Facebook or VKontakte.

    Here I have collected some of the most interesting questions and objections and answers to them. But first, I give a few personal rules on working with objections (in no case do I pretend to be complete):

    1. Objections are true, but they are false. First welcome, even if you hear this objection a hundred and first time. For the latter, look for the real background.

    2. I quote Sergey Filippov's Sales-detonator : “Imagine that in the client’s head there is a maze. At the end of this maze is the coveted word “yes!” - the customer agrees to buy your product. But in order to go through this maze to the end, you need to go around all the obstacle walls - the client’s objections ... So, do not try to give out a “killer” argument, often it simply does not exist. Or he will be convincing only to you, but not to the client. Always respond to objections, even if the answer does not seem convincing to you. You and the client have different labyrinths of objections. ”

    3. To sell a product to a customer - you must first sell your company, to sell your company - you need to sell yourself, to sell yourself - you need to sell a product to yourself. Let people know that you believe in what you are selling, tell a story why you believe in what you are doing. Part of my personal story is described here .

    4. Do not say that the product is cool, it’s better to tell some other client’s story that demonstrates this fact and allows your interlocutor to come to the same conclusion. You need to know a lot of stories, preferably several for each industry.

    Ultimately, let people decide for themselves what is good for the corporate social network and what is not.

    And now the most common objection.

    Objection: “Yammer (or Jive, or DaOffice, etc.) - this is the second Facebook” or “Actually, I deleted myself from VKontakte”.

    Answer: “Facebook and Yammer (or Jive, or DaOffice, etc.) are tools that have a similar interface, but this is where the similarities end. The first is used for personal communication, the second for operational teamwork in organizations. It depends on you how you formulate the business goal and task for the corporate social network, what you propose to do to people in it, how you will manage the community. We will help you with this. ” In general, quite often, upon hearing the wording “corporate social network”, people discard the word “corporate”, determine the key “social network” for themselves, and association with public social networks, idleness and useless chatter is triggered. It’s not always worth starting a conversation with the wording “corporate social network”; depending on the context, the name “Enterprise 2. 0 ”or“ new generation corporate portal ”, or“ element of the knowledge management system ”, or“ innovation support system ”, or“ social intranet ”. Your dialogue will be more likely to continue.

    Objection: “People will be wasting time on corporate Facebook.”

    Answer: “Thanks to the corporate social network, people will save this time because they will receive an answer to their question not in two weeks, but in two minutes. Because the corporate social network is the place where you do your work. By the way, what are your employees talking about in the smoking room? ”

    Objection: “We already have an email and we have enough of it. Why do we need another system? ”

    Answer: “Watch this wonderful video , the corporate social network is more effective than email at times. And the question is not in duplicating work in two systems, in transferring the work of employees to a more convenient tool for this. ”

    Objection: “People will not go there.”

    Answer: “The transition to the corporate social network is an organizational and cultural shift. A personal example of leaders will help here, their efforts to support the implementation project, as well as the successful perception of the new system by users - and this is part of our work to which you can attract us.

    Objection: “We tried - it didn’t work, it won’t work now.” or "It will never work!"

    “No one knew the name of the new captain. The whole fleet called him nicknamed Swim-Know. Whoever addressed him with advice, no matter what they told him, everyone heard from him one careless answer: "We swam - we know." When he was asked a question during exams, he answered so importantly: “We swam - we know” that the old professors were embarrassed to ask him and they embarrassedly put fives on him. ” Seriously, you can endlessly discuss the reasons why something cannot be done and nothing can be done. In addition, this is the negative context of the previous project, and your interlocutor is guided in it much better than you. Better tell us about the positive example of another organization from a similar industry, as a litmus test, offer to make a reference visit. If your interlocutor brought a true objection - he will agree, otherwise, you get the red traffic light, and no matter how much effort you spend, the probability of success is minimal. Look for a more loyal employee in this organization and offer himre-launch of the corporate social network.

    Objection: “What about inappropriate user behavior? Suddenly they will come out now and tell us? ”

    In response, I quote Sergei Ryzhikov, Director of 1C-Bitrix: “During a performance on the stage of the theater, artists, too, instead of the role text, can start complaining about poor repair of dressing rooms. But they do not do this, because they know that, firstly, they are personalized, and secondly, asocial behavior is immediately rejected by the group. The same applies to the corporate network. The self-regulation system is working. ”

    Objection: “Employees will create unions and unite against leaders.”

    Answer: “Firstly, the appearance of such a group is an indicator that employees have real problems and that it is necessary to fight not with the initiative group itself, but with the reasons for dissatisfaction. And how do you know about the appearance of such a group if they unite in a public social network? Secondly, the corporate social network allows employees to directly communicate with top managers and declare their interests. Thus, she becomes a competitor to the trade union leader because she takes part of the mediation tasks from him. ”

    Objection: “What to do with all these activities, what if someone writes something wrong?”

    You are carefully hinted that not everyone will be happy if any inconvenient information leaks from ordinary employees towards the owners or the general director. There is essentially nothing to answer this question, because yes, the corporate social network makes the company flat and transparent. And not every company is ready for this at the organizational and cultural level. This is the question that the client must answer for himself. It’s good for you that the issue of transparency arises now, and not at the moment when the implementation project will stall due to quiet resistance.

    Objection: “This is unsafe, because everything will be available to everyone!”

    Answer: “A corporate social network is your business application, put it on your servers, as you did with email, a portal, etc. All corporate social networking platforms have access restrictions, but unlike email, for example , you will not be able to send a confidential document outside your organization, even by mistake. And believe me, your leaders have long united in messengers such as Viber or Whatsapp and are discussing very interesting issues there. ”


    In conclusion, I bring the translation of the joke depicted in the title. The financial director asks the general: “What if we train employees and they leave us?”, To which the general asks him: “What if we do not train them and they stay?”. Everyone fears that the corporate social network will not work or will be used out of business. Simply, someone considers this a sufficient reason to abandon the new opportunity, and someone takes and implements. I advise you to start with a pilot launch , and let me know if you need help.

    PS If you did not find your favorite objection or think that your answers are better - write.

    Vladimir Ivanitsa

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