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CHAPTER 10: Selling to the C-Suite > Connecting with the CEO Directly - Pg. 163

Q SELLING TO THE C-SUITE 163 knowledge is not just knowledge about their company and their industry, but also includes knowledge of geopolitical and business/economic issues. Knowledge, however, is not always exhibited in what you say. Knowledge is also seen in a person's level of confidence in being prepared to handle whatever dis- cussion may arise. You can break down the necessary knowl- edge into two categories. First, you need to know just enough about most topics to be able to actively participate in and understand a discussion on those topics. Second, you need a deep level of knowledge on the topics that are most important to the C-suite executive. Trust Finally, we come to trust, which is the foundation of every other trait C-suite executives expect to see in other people with whom they are going to associate. Without trust, there is no reason for a member of the C-suite to even have a dis- cussion with the other person. The most basic way to prove trustworthiness is whether the parties involved can keep information private. In addition, when it is appropriate to share information with others, it must be done without fluff or exaggeration. Connecting with the CEO Directly Pick up your phone and call the CEO with whom you've al- ways wanted to have a meeting. Go ahead and try it and see what happens. In the vast majority of situations, you won't American Managememt Association ·