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The Hidden Agenda: A Proven Way to Win Business and Create a Following Hardcover – April 17, 2012
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"The Hidden Agenda makes the invaluable link between understanding your audience's motivation and creating success. It also reveals some of the secret tactics that Kevin has used to help change businesses around the world. It all begins with that simple, timeless practice of connecting with people on a much deeper level. Don't miss the remarkable teachings of this unusual book and author." —Dan Schawbel, personal branding expert, bestselling author and owner of Millennial Branding"Kevin's enjoyable and informative book reminds us all that to communicate well is to connect with people first." —Rudy Giuliani, former Mayor of the City of New York
"Kevin Allen is the 'Picasso' of the high art of the new business development and he has finally shared his magical techniques with the rest of us. A must-read! ." —Larry Weber, Chairman and CEO of W2 Group, author of Everywhere: Comprehensive Digital Business Strategy for the Social Media Era
"Kevin has a special ability to uplift and inspire those around him. His generous spirit is on every page." —Steven Overman, Vice President and Global Head Marketing Creation, Nokia
"Anyone who is trying to create the most persuasive selling presentation, the most inspiring vision or discover the customer sweet spot must read (and re-read)) Kevin Allen's new book. While filled with concepts and insights, this is no academic treatise, but a valuable playbook from someone who has 'been there, done that' with amazing success many times." — Joe Plummer, Professor of Marketing, Columbia Business School
"Kevin Allen knows the art and science of marketing, brand building, and human persuasion. He shares his unique strategy for winning accounts and building businesses in The Hidden Agenda. A must-read tale as only he can tell it." — Jim R. Heekin III, Chairman and CEO, Grey Group
"Kevin Allen has a powerful ability to turn insight into winning results. In The Hidden Agenda, he turns his approach into a discipline we can all use to drive results and win more consistently." — Andy Janowski, COO, Burberry
"Kevin's knowledge, experience and humanity were an Interpublic treasure. He is a brilliantly gifted growth practitioner and a natural teacher. It is in his DNA to share. This proves it and The Hidden Agenda is a must-read for anyone with growth on their agenda." — David Bell,, Chairman Emeritus, The Interpublic Group, Advertising Hall of Fame Inductee 2007
"Kevin Allen is a one-of-a-kind person and unequivocally successful in his approach to business growth. Although I would far prefer to have Kevin around the office at all times, The Hidden Agenda is a perfect substitute and a great way to have access to his style, generosity, and wisdom." --Björn Larsson, CMO, SVP, Swedbank
About the Author
He is the best-selling author of The Hidden Agenda: A Proven Way to Business and Create a Following (Bibliomotion, 2012), and also The Case of the Missing Cutlery: A Leadership Course for the Rising Star (Bibliomotion, 2014), which has been featured on BBC Radio’s Four Thought leadership series.
With decades at the top of advertising giants McCann-WorldGroup, the Interpublic Group and Lowe and Partners Worldwide, Kevin worked with such brands as MasterCarddeveloping the globally famous "Priceless" campaignMicrosoft, Marriott, Smith Barney, Nestle, L'Oreal, Lufthansa and Johnson & Johnson, and was an early part of Rudy Giuliani's team that prepared the way for the successful Mayoral election and turnaround strategies for the City of New York.
An academy instructor at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and Eurobest Festival, and a visiting lecturer at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business and the European Business School at Regents College London, Kevin is a featured speaker at companies like Google, Microsoft and has appeared on BBC.
Lawrence Flanagan: Lawrence Flanagan is the Executive Dean of College of Business at the University of New Haven. He is regarded as one of the most accomplished global marketing leaders in the country.
Top Customer Reviews
The basic lesson here is how to ferret out the personality of the person or persons to whom you are presenting an idea or pitch to gain their commitment to not only buying into your presentation but also to create the `hidden agenda' of the `audience' into willfully and eagerly following you and your presentation. I like the following summary as it is likely more clear than a first response upon finishing a book: `Pitches are made in business every day -- to win the account, convince a colleague or sell a vision to the Board of Directors, but people ignore the most basic component of making the sale -- decisions are made by people, and people have unspoken needs and agendas. Kevin Allen has recognized that by identifying these needs, and connecting the pitch directly to it, you win.Read more ›
I selected the title of this review from a longer passage in the Introduction: "Get it? Get what? The `what' is the [begin italics] hidden agenda [end italics], the emotional motivator behind all the statistics, the business jargon, and the other things that surround any key business issue. It is in fact how people make decisions, with their hearts."
Allen is a veteran advertising executive and an accomplished "pitch man" but clearly agrees with John Hill, co-founder of Hill & Knowlton, that the best pitch is one that offers "truth well told." He shares everything he has learned about how to prepare and then present such a pitch for the readers whom he characterizes as "you dreamers, strivers, fighters, doers, and itchy-feet people `growth aspirants." Allen is convinced that, for them, their ability to pitch "is the very spearpoint and lifeblood of achieving these ambitions.Read more ›
I have long believed in the hidden agenda -- it is rarely expressed in any formal way; you have to dig deep to truly hear it. When you show that you "get it" (and can "get it right") you win the business more often than not. Kevin had done a fabulous job charting this emotional, furtive journey to the heart of a client, essentially decoding the process in a practical way. This is a high-impact book for anyone in business development, but is has equal value for anyone aspiring to build relationships and enduring client engagements on something more than a transactional level.
While this book is rock solid in method, it is a joy to read. Kevin has a bright and personable writing style and peppers his pages with vivid stories and refreshing humility. He invites you into his success and offers genuine encouragement that--if you take the time to do so--you can reach hearts as well as minds.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Presenting this book to my team! I would love to have a session one on one. great work!Published 13 months ago by Book Lover
Kevin Allen shows how to target your presentations at that elusive, but so important hidden agenda - the real issues to which we should appeal. Read morePublished on June 15, 2014 by Gary Pittard
I discovered Kevin Allen's new book, The Hidden Agenda, through a Fast Company article I read discussing his winning of the Mastercard account. Read morePublished on August 18, 2012 by Alex Realmuto
Just when you think that you've seen every 'how-to', tips or management book, Kevin Allen serves up what's been missing in everyone's approach to "the pitch". Read morePublished on August 9, 2012 by Jeroen Bours
Kevin Allen is clearly a man of extraordinary perception and insight about the art of motivation. He writes with clarity, style and humor. He is a master story teller. Read morePublished on July 14, 2012 by J Hicks
Full Disclosure. I know Kevin and have worked with him over the years. He has run workshops for us to help us do what he does best: figure out a way to pitch and win business. Read morePublished on July 14, 2012 by Gavin McMahon