When meeting someone for the first time at a networking event, there are three types of information that must be exchanged:
1. Your name.
2. State the one thing you do Best, in response to the question, “What do you do?” This is not intended to be a listing of all your skills and talents.
3. Provide a brief example or a testimonial, of your skills and talents. This is an opportunity to briefly show how you have helped your clients, or solved a problem for your clients or company.
When you state the one thing that you do best, it should consist of only ten to fifteen words that describe your Best. Remember this should be jargon free and must be understood by a ten year old. It allows you to be colorful and exciting, with the ability to use vivid words. After all, you want to create interest and there’s no better way to do so than through the choice of words you use.
For example, instead of describing yourself as a “marketing consultant,” why not say what you do Best: “I help people get the word out about their products and services.”
Now for the Test. You could say, “Several weeks ago, I wrote a press release that got my client’s story in the business section of the Houston Business Journal. Her phone has not stopped ringing.”
Elevator speeches and 30-second commercials are best used when you’re asked to give an overview, introduction or information about you and your services, in 30 seconds or less. Your response to “What do you do?” is not the time to give your elevator speech or 30-second commercial.
When making a new connection to build a new relationship, the goal is to spark conversation and educate the other party about your character, integrity and competence. That is why it’s called a Best/Test.
The Best/Test is explained in more detail in the How to Get Connected, Get Noticed, Get Known, & Get Paid which defines other Best/Test ways to expand your marketplace presence and gain more clients. It is all about how you build your relationships, and the best way to build is from the beginning.
In summary, here are a few tips to remember:
1. Talk about your talent, not your title (titles tell what you are, not what you do).
2. Avoid acronyms and jargon.
3. Talk about your title and the name of your company much later in the conversation
4. If you wear multiple hats, prepare multiple Best/Tests.
Remember, people do business with those they know, like and trust.
© Copyright 2013 Laureen Wishom