From Confusion To Clarity
Lewis of Academic Solutions, an
educational support service in Hazlehurst, Georgia, had a student, Laura, who
was having difficulty applying what she knew about algebra to the word problems
she was trying to solve. The problem? Laura knew so many different methods that
she felt overwhelmed and couldn't produce an answer. It was important that she
understand which rules to apply to each individual problem because she needed to
pass the algebra-math portion of the military ASVAB test (Armed Services
Vocational Aptitude Battery).
It became quickly apparent to Joanne that simply telling Laura to calm down and
select the appropriate solution was not getting through to her. She was too
flustered to hear Joanne's advice. Joanne finally said, "I told her to think of
all the rules I had taught her as being in a suitcase or in a toolkit. I
explained that when a plumber went to work on pipes or a mechanic on a car, they
didn't use every trick they knew or every tool they owned. First, they analyzed
the situation, then they chose the correct tool."
"Once she heard the analogy," reports Joanne, "She quit panicking. She changed
her way of 'seeing' how to deal with the problems. She began to analyze the
problems to decide which of the 'tools' she needed to use. By the end of the
hour, she was choosing the correct method to solve individual problems at least
90% of the time. I was impressed (and grateful) for her improvement."
"Thank you for reminding us how often communication is improved by using
metaphors and analogies."
What Do You Explain?
Time and again, metaphor proves itself to be the most efficient and effective
way to make your point and achieve a result. What do you explain that would get
you results faster with the help of metaphorical language?
Make what you say pay — with metaphors.
Political Fur Flies!
You can't read a columnist or listen to a politician during election cycles
without running into a metaphor a minute. Peggy Noonan, The Wall Street Journal,
nails Newt Gingrich an an "angry little attack muffin." Elsewhere in her article
she notes a 2008 ad recently revived that calls Mitt Romney a "'Masterpiece
Theatre'-level flip-flopper." Earlier in the primary campaign, Newt Gingrich
compared his failure to qualify on the Virginia ballot to Pearl Harbor, a
setback, from which he would recover differently: Taking advantage of Gingrich’s
well-known disorganization, Romney framed the loss very differently: "I think
it’s more like Lucille Ball at the chocolate factory." Ouch.
The election is only going to get more colorful, not only among Republicans, but
between Republicans and Democrats as well. Sit back and prepare for metaphoric
Football Metaphors Out In Full Force!
the midst of the play-offs, it should come as no surprise that
CBS Money Watch runs an article comparing
sales presentation preparation to an ESPN pre-game analysis. The five steps are
“1. Do the Match-up Analysis 2. Know the Stats, 3. Identify the 1-2 Things to
Win, 4.Calculate the Risks, 5. Understand the Game-Changers.” The world of
sports is a popular source for metaphors. As long as the references are known to
your listeners, they can be quite effective in communicating your message. If you
follow football, check out this story.
Need Help With Your Presentation?
Call today and turn your information that tells into a story
Personal Presentation Client:
"I sing your praises every opportunity I get. I look forward to
continuing our work together"
Jane Newton, Wealth Manager, Regent Atlantic Capital LLC
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|"The Metaphor Minute" is a brief monthly note with examples from business, media, or politics that illustrate the power of metaphors and analogies to make a point, solve a problem, and get results. Use these stories to stimulate high pay-off metaphoric thinking in your business. ©
2009. Anne Miller. -- PERMISSION TO REPRINT -- Feel free to reprint in company newsletters or articles. Just include ©2011, Anne Miller, author, "Metaphorically Selling," firstname.lastname@example.org |
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