Do you have a vision or a new idea that you want to communicate?
Can you articulate it in one simple sentence that conveys the essence of the idea or vision without relying on jargon or intimate knowledge of the field?
Most often what we try to do is to cram everything we know into that one sentence, making something that is unwieldy or difficult to remember. Many of us even eschew the process of simplifying our message because it seems like the hard work was in getting the details collected and ranked in order of importance.
Unfortunately for many people, the lack of a simple and clear sentence can be the difference between success and failure in their business.
There are three things that every entrepreneur, business leader, executive or politician needs to do before they can successfully communicate their ideas to others.
1. Leave out the jargon Nothing will confuse or turn people off more than the impression that you are only speaking to those who understand your lingo. It might work well when speaking to the initiated, but if you are only preaching to the choir then you aren’t really doing your job.
2. Focus on the Big PictureWhat is the problem that you are solving? So often people skip over this part and only want to talk about the solution. Yes, you might have a great idea for solar-powered roller skates, but remind me why we need them again? What problem are you solving?
3. One thingWhat is the one thing that makes your idea exciting to you and different from others? Be ruthless about choosing this. Boil down your idea to its essence and trust that this one thing is enough. If you think that your idea is too complicated to do this, then you don’t yet know what is good about your idea. Don’t fall in love with the complexity. Good communication is about trusting that the other person will understand if it is clear enough.
Simplifying our messages isn’t about dumbing it down, rather it is a smarter and more elegant way to communicate the essence of what we are trying to accomplish.
One sentence. Big Picture. Simple language. Only one thing.