When the Elevator Door Closes …

What can you say in 30 seconds? 

If you’re like so many others vying to get your message out to land a job or sell your product, you’ll want to master the elevator speech – a 30-second Reader’s Digest version of your resume or business plan. In yesterday’s post, I mentioned 4 S’s to help you focus on your listener and asked you to stay tuned to learn more about technique and content. So I’m picking up on that today. 

The technique sounds simple enough, yet it may require some stiff self-talk and a mini-makeover for you to pull it off. All that’s required is that you look and sound confident. Let your passion show. Do you need to pay closer attention to your appearance or delivery? Practicing your presentation in front of a mirror will help you see what others do.  No worries, though. All of this will fall into place if you’ve done your homework on the content and you’re comfortable with what you have to say. 

First and foremost, keep in mind your goal to engage your listener so that he wants to hear more. 

Start out with the idea of gaining their interest by sharing the benefit your skills, product or idea brings to them.  Perhaps it will solve a problem or address an unmet need. 

Sandwich in how your skills or ideas will meet their need and why it must be fixed sooner – preferably now – rather than later. This may require some home-spun self analysis to hone it down to a few words, but once you think you have it, run it by someone who knows you well to get their feedback.  You may have overlooked your most stellar quality. 

Show how your proposal will succeed to their benefit. Whether you’re interested in employment or selling a product or initiative, they’re interest is in the return on investment. 

Stop talking and listen to their response.  If they ask you questions or for your business card, you’ve got your foot in the door. 

So now I’ll ask myself, “What can you say in 30 seconds?”

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