A chance encounter with a top manager and you are asked a simple question – “What’s your team working on at the moment?” Or, perhaps you are presenting your business development plans to the board or other stakeholders. How do you answer in a clear, concise and compelling way?
One of the powerful techniques developed in the Think on your Feet® workshop is the ability to move from specific details of what we are doing to the bigger picture of why we are doing it. The technique links our own, our team or our company’s specific activities to broader strategic goals. Also, by taking a step back and looking at the broader context of our work, we can increase understanding of how individual tasks fit into the larger picture, enabling more informed decision making.
The technique involves starting with a specific detail or piece of information and then expanding the focus to include the larger context or implications of that detail. Doing this in three clear, short sentences creates greater impact. Here are some examples:
1. Specifically, we are testing the use of biodegradable materials for the production process. In the bigger picture, this will help position us as a leader in eco-friendly products and appeal to environmentally conscious consumers. Ultimately, this will drive sales and improve our reputation while also having a positive impact on the environment.
2. This year, we are implementing a new marketing focus using local social media influencers to promote our products. More broadly, this will help increase brand awareness among younger demographics and drive more traffic to our website. Overall, we believe this will grow our customer base and drive revenue growth.
3. This year, we are focusing specifically on investment on new technology to automate our manufacturing processes. In doing this, we aim to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and increase our capacity to meet growing demand. Looking at the bigger picture, we believe this will help us increase our margins and build our competitive edge in the region.
4. Right now, we are launching a new employee wellness program that includes regular exercise classes and mental health programs. As a result, we believe this will improve employee morale, reduce turnover, and increase productivity. Ultimately, this will help us create a more positive workplace culture and improve overall business performance.
5. We are expanding our distribution network to include specific markets in the Middle East and South East Asia. Through this, we are hoping to increase our international reach and diversify our customer base. Overall, we believe this will help us mitigate risk and capture new growth opportunities.
By moving from specific details to the big picture in three short sentences, your listener not only understands what you’re planning, but also why it matters and what it means for the bigger picture – a sure way to make personal impact when put on the spot by top management or when presenting your business development plans.
See here for a short video summary of this article.
Think on your Feet® is a leading global training that develops the skills to organise and structure your thoughts quickly and present them clearly, concisely and memorably. For further details, see here or message me directly.