Tuesday, August 9, 2011
I like you have seen the devastation left by the rioters in England. I find it upsetting for several reasons, one of which is that it was preventable. Hindsight is always 20-20, and allows us to see what we could have done to prevent issues like that. So seeing that made me think, who are the potential rioters sitting in your demos?
I ask, because they don't wear a sign, or have membership cards, but they due share some traits. If you can spot them, you can stop them. They don't feel they have any power in the process, they aren't happy with their situation, they don't want things to get "better". They will do what they have to, until they see the first crack in the process, they will try to burn your demo down. Using hindsight, I'm sure you can point some of these people out to me now. Let me give you some tips to stop this from happening again.
Acknowledge everyone, don't just focus on your "key" contacts. You never know who might have more power than you think, and by including, you are empowering.
Look for people who only pay attention when negative questions are raised. After you address the question, look back at them and ask them if they have any additional questions. Putting them on the spot will limit any mumbled questions under their breath, just loud enough for everyone to hear.
If you falter in your demo or have a hiccup, look around the table and make eye contact with everyone there, don't blink, show fear, or back down. This is the surest way to stop one of these looters in their tracks, don't let them gain any momentum.
Don't let a small setback turn into a riot, because you didn't stand strong and face down the crowd.