How to Win A Pitch by Joey Asher

About the Author:

JOEY ASHER is one of the country’s preeminent experts on selling skills and communication.
As President of Speechworks, an Atlanta-based communication and selling skills coaching firm that has been helping business people deliver presentations that win business for over 20 years, Asher combines his skills as an attorney and journalist to help sellers communicate a clear, simple message that connects with prospects and wins business.

As a professional communication and selling skills coach, Asher has worked with executives, managers, and salespeople at such firms and organizations as The Home Depot, Skanska, Hardin Construction, Georgia Pacific, Global Payments, The Weather Channel, UPS, Kimberly-Clark, Alston & Bird, PricewaterhouseCoopers, AMVESCAP, Verizon, Cisco, and Kurt Salmon Associates.

Asher is author of Even a Geek Can Speak: Low-Tech Presentation Skills For High-Tech People, which was originally published by Longstreet Press in 2001 and is now in its third printing by Persuasive Speaker Press, and Selling and Communication Skills for Lawyers, which was published in 2005 by American Lawyer Media. How to Win a Pitch: The Five Fundamentals that Will Distinguish You from the Competition is his latest book.

A graduate of Cornell University, Asher earned his JD from Emory University Law School. Prior to attending law school, Asher worked as a newspaper reporter for the Gannett newspaper chain in Georgia and New York. Asher practiced law with Troutman Sanders L.L.P. in Atlanta, and worked as an adjunct professor of law at Emory University School of Law.

Joey Asher lives in the Atlanta, Georgia area with his wife and family.

You can visit Joey online at

About the Book:

How to Win a Pitch will help you learn how to: Develop presentations that win contracts. Create connections to secure business relationships. Identify, discuss and fulfill client needs effectively. Veteran business coach Joey Asher has helped his clients win over five billion dollars in new business contracts. He uses his former experience as an attorney and journalist to help readers and clients rise above their competition. He has authored two previous books, Selling & Communication Skills for Lawyers and Even a Geek Can Speak: Low-Tech Presentation Skills For High-Tech People.

I was lucky enough to get this author to agree to an interview. Here's what he had to say:

Could you please tell us a little about your book?

The book is "How to Win a Pitch: The Five Fundamentals that Will Distinguish You from the Competition." It details how to create and deliver presentations that win business. It’s aimed at sales people. But it’s also a great book about how to persuade listeners.
As president of Speechworks, an Atlanta-based, nationally-known communication skills coaching firm, my colleagues and I have helped clients create and deliver presentations that have won billions of dollars in new business. We work with all industries including construction, architecture, engineering, high tech, financial services, manufacturing, real estate, accounting, law and others.

We have learned that the key to a great pitch is executing five fundamentals.

Making the presentation solution-oriented
Keeping it simple
Delivering with passion
Interacting with the prospect during the presentation
Appearing well-rehearsed.

The book teaches how to execute those fundamentals. It includes recipes for success as well as success stories taken from my experiences working with clients.

Did something specific happen to prompt you to write this book?

In helping clients create and deliver sales presentations, I’m constantly being asked the following question: "How can we distinguish ourselves from the competition when what we are offering is so similar?"

My new book answers that question. It includes everything you need to know to distinguish your firm from the competition in a competitive presentation.

Who is your biggest supporter?

My wife is my biggest supporter. I definitely could not do what I do without her.

Who has influenced you throughout your career as a writer?

I think I have been most influenced by my time as a newspaper reporter. I was a reporter for seven years. During that time, I learned how to write a simple declarative sentence and tell stories. That has helped my writing more than anything else.

What are you currently working on?

I’m working on leveraging "How to Win a Pitch" to build my business. Speechworks is a communication skills coaching firm based in Atlanta. For the last 23 years, we have helped our clients learn how to create and deliver effective presentations.

Do you have any advice for writers or readers?

This is my third book. All three I’ve written in about six months. Many people ask me how I’m able to write books so fast. I tell them that I write two pages every day no matter what. If I reach the end of my two pages, I stop, even if I’m in the middle of a sentence. That allows me to get going strong the next day. Writing a book is a marathon. You just need to plug away a little every day.

What do you feel has been your greatest achievement as an author?

I think the achievement is the books themselves. All three of my books are good and I’m proud of them.

What do you feel is your biggest strength?

My biggest strength is my ability to turn common events into stories that make a teaching point. For example, in the book I tell a story about how a construction contractor left a dumpster in my driveway one day. We hadn’t hired him yet. But he put it there to show a level of commitment, that he was ready to get started on our home renovation. Similarly, I explain, great sellers show a level of commitment to their prospects by putting a figurative dumpster in their prospect’s driveway. That is they do something that shows a commitment to the prospect.

Biggest weakness?

I can be very impatient. My wife hates taking me to restaurants because I get frustrated with poor service. I’m always polite to waiters, but I do get steamed and unpleasant to be around for the others at the table. I get really mad when neighboring tables that were seated later than me get served first. That drives me crazy. My kids think it’s hilarious.

What do you feel sets this book apart from others in the same genre?

This book lays out a simple, comprehensive system for creating winning sales presentations. No other books lay out such a simple, proven approach.

You know the scenario – you’re stuck on an island. What book would you bring with you and why?

Anything by Michael Connelly. I love crime fiction. He’s great. I love Lee Child too.

What is the most important lesson you have learned from life so far?

I think that the most important lesson I’ve learned is that you need to spend your days doing what you love to do, not trying to live up to the standards of others. I spent several years as a lawyer and hated every minute of it. I became much happier when I left the law and followed my passion.

What is your favorite past-time?

I love playing tennis, cooking, and playing the harmonica. I’m a good tennis player, a decent cook, and poor harmonica player.