Effective Selling Requires Listening
As I learned from my experience with the car salesman, you must learn what’s important to the decision-maker before you try to sell a retrospective. Ask about goals for the group, difficulties running projects, and changes made. Find out how well the changes work. Ask about the decision-maker’s hopes and fears, and get to know what’s important to him or her. Once you know all this, you are in an excellent position to help the decision-maker identify whether to hold a retrospective.
Sell Trust, Confidence, and Ongoing Support
The retrospective event is your product, but it is only a piece of what you are selling. You are also selling yourself as the best facilitator for the job. Demonstrate your facilitation and listening skills, as well as your understanding of the team’s project experience. Build your contact’s trust in you by being honest and confident about your abilities. Discuss the scope of your follow-up support to help implement the changes identified during the retrospective. You are not there just for the duration of the retrospective—you will also be there to help establish lasting change.