One week ago, I sent my customer a list of three “Better Tomorrow MessageTM” options. We were then going to meet a week later to select the preferred option.
The BTM is the first sentence you say when asked, “What do you do?” (your elevator pitch/elevator speech). The strategic purpose of your BTM is to ensure everyone in your organization understands and appreciates the value you bring to your various stakeholders. Think of it as a very practical mission statement. Some folks may call it your value proposition, your benefit statement, or your differentiation statement.
We met, a week later, which was yesterday. In the meeting, there were two VERY strong-willed executives, Joan and Christine*. Joan, was willing to agree to BTM two, if the group as a whole, was in favor. Christine, really, really wanted BTM one. And she let everyone know it. Christine nearly bullied the room to accept option two, using more assertive language than Joan to persuade her fellow executives.
Can you guess who was the primary voice of opposition? Yes, Joan. Why? Because human nature kicked in. She became defensive and reactive.
MAKING THE DECISION PROCESS SMOOTHER
Christine had two options to make the decision process smoother (a nice way of saying to persuade the other executives). She could have 1) met all of the key decision makers before the meeting to advocate for her preference and/or b) used subtle ways of influencing and persuading during the meeting (e.g., provide examples and share stories).
When you have a project or idea you are especially passionate about, think about how you can influence and persuade…will you gently nudge, assertively push, or shove them off a cliff?
* names changed
ps I suggested that they have some informal one-on-one meetings to compare and contrast the two Better Tomorrow MessageTM options.
Photography Source: Photos.com