You know the drill. You’re supposed to follow your mentor’s formula for writing your “elevator speech” or 30-second intro. And then deliver it with enthusiasm to everyone who will stop long enough to listen. Right?
OK. You’re following instructions. You’ve rewritten the thing at least 17 times. You’ve rehearsed it until you’re blue in the face. Then why do people’s eyes still glaze over?
Try Something Different
It’s possible that what you really need is a new approach – not a new speech. Here are some ideas:
- Focus on how you can serve the people you talk with. Maybe that has nothing to do with your business right now. Maybe it’s about referring them to your electrician.
- Pretend you’re the host of the event – like it’s your party. Introduce people to each other. Greet loners standing by themselves.
- Introduce yourself with just your name. Then ask the other person about themselves. Instead of asking, “What do you do?” mix it up a little bit. How about, “What do you like BEST about what you do?” Get a real conversation going.
What About My Elevator Speech?
Your turn will come – don’t worry. It happens organically in a conversation. No need to pounce! Your rehearsals will pay off because you’re totally familiar with expressing what you offer. Use the elements of your speech in a natural way inside your conversation. Now it’s not a speech – it’s part of building a relationship.
Relaxing Into It
You may think the problem is that your words aren’t perfect. But that’s not it. Researchers have found that your words count for only 7% of the overall message you send when you talk with somebody. Only 7%! The majority (55%) of your message is transmitted by facial expression and body language; and 38% comes from your voice quality.
So it’s not your words that really connect you to people. It’s how they feel interacting with you. Are you tense? Desperate for business? People sense that and feel distant and distrusting. You really need to find a way to relax and enjoy yourself. Take the focus and the pressure off yourself and you’ll be surprised at the new connections you’ll make.