I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the past year pitching passion projects to Pawprint’s exec team (if you’re reading this, hey guys. My next idea is coming on Tuesday…)
Each time, I’ve learnt a little more about what sways them. Am I an expert? God, no. Not even close. But I have picked up some tips and tricks along the way, so I’m here to share them with you.
As of Feb 2022, Pawprint users have collectively saved over 700 tonnes of CO2e from entering the atmosphere. The wider we spread our tool, the higher that number grows. So if your passion project is to get Pawprint into your workplace, snap. Let’s make that happen, together.
When pitching to your boss, consider the following:
Sustainability is undoubtedly on your boss’ radar, and she/he/they are looking for ways to turn it into a business opportunity. Since Pawprint combines meaningful positive change with boosted employee engagement, I’d say it ticks the boxes. Really, this is a communication challenge; you need to get to the core of your boss’ motivations and connect with them in a way that’s impossible to ignore.
Here’s how you do that:
Know the person you are pitching to
Italicising the word ‘know’ makes it seem a little creepy, and perhaps it is. But—much like space travel—knowing what buttons to push when is important (one assumes).
I recommend spending some time figuring out what drives your boss. Try to answer the following:
- What problems/pain points do they face at work?
- What motivates them and/or gets them excited?
- Is there a time of day to steer clear of? (Pre-coffee me… She’s a mess)
- Buzzwords; what are the 3 they love to hear? (Engagement, profitability, productivity, culture-boosting, purpose, future-proofing, etc. etc. etc.)
Answer these and you’re halfway there; you’ve the beginnings of a roadmap, so long as you alleviate 1, dangle 2, avoid 3 and use 4.
Link the idea directly to your boss’ pain points and motivators
Pawprint has a handy list of reasons why businesses should invest in us right here, so this is just an exercise in connecting the dots. To make it even easier, Christian (our founder) also penned a list of 5 good reasons leaders should consider Pawprint for Business. Don’t say we don’t treat you good.
If you know your organisation’s goals/OKRs, there are bonus points for demonstrating how your idea contributes to achieving them. In a nutshell, Pawprint can:
- Boost employee engagement and (by extension) productivity
- Help to attract and retain talent
- Accelerate the journey to climate targets
- Empower leaders to make data-led sustainability decisions
- Help to create or maintain a good reputation
Connect with the business’ values and mission
Recently, Pawprint introduced a benefit whereby employees who can prove they are travelling slowly to a holiday destination (getting the train or driving in a full car over flying, for example) get additional annual leave. Pretty cool, right?
This is a perk I suggested, and it came to fruition largely because of how obviously it aligned with our values and mission. I tell you this, not to show off my powers of persuasion but to demonstrate that connecting your suggestion to the mission and values of the company is a powerful motivator.
If you’re thinking ‘but I don’t think Pawprint does align with my company’s mission/values’ then here’s an article for you. It spells out just how critical sustainability is for businesses nowadays. So if your company isn’t thinking about how to become a force for good, your first task is to get this on their radar!
In my experience, one of the first things that leaders want to know is ‘What have they achieved for other businesses like ours?’ or ‘Who are they already working with?’.
Pawprint for Business was only released in late April, so we’re holding off on asking our customers for case studies until they’ve had time to actually roll out and use our product. In the meantime, I give you... Our partners page. It’s a long list of the businesses we’re already working with. Note the likes of Abrdn (formerly Standard Life Aberdeen), Peter Vardy and Ooni.
Then, I also have a testimonial from one of Peterson’s employees, Holly Maclean. She’s a Pawprint ambassador at work, and talks about how Pawprint has helped her reduce her carbon footprint in a fun and engaging way.
Round up a few colleagues to support your pitch
Alongside external validation, it won’t hurt to gather support from colleagues who like the idea or would find Pawprint useful. Demonstrating that there’s already a strong desire for it should prick up the ears of the people you’re trying to convince.
A few last tips:
- Keep it concise. Your boss is a busy person.
- Choose your moment.
- Speak passionately. It’s contagious.
The more companies we roll out to, the more carbon we save. Let’s do it, together.