April 17, 2013
Who's the Killer?
your favorite forensic crime show? Body of Proof? NCIS? Would you naturally
combine forensic crime with a job description on an interview?
No? Why not? This woman did.
Nina is an unemployed senior level
Wall Street risk analyst, one among many out of work because of the economy. I
met her at a financial executive industry meeting where she was looking for
ideas to help differentiate herself on job interviews.
Initially, when I asked her what she
did, she essentially gave me a rundown of her resume, which, of course, sounded
like every other financial executive’s list of responsibilities and
Then, I asked her two questions: What
made her unique? And how would people in her previous jobs describe her?
She thought for a moment and replied,
“Intuition. I am able to look at data and intuitively get insights from it that
others either don’t see or don’t see right away.”
“Great,” I said. “Now, let’s create a
way for an interviewer to see your value.”
Let me pause the story here to say
that Nina’s problem is the problem everyone in business faces: In a sea of
similar sounding choices, how do you get a client, investor, or employer to see
the unique value you offer? This model will help you.
Determine what is unique about you, your service, or your
your mind randomly bounce around looking for conceptual
similarities among worlds outside your particular domain
(sports, medicine, the arts, science, history, tools, nature,
transportation, kids, crime, war, etc.)
Select the best comparison for your metaphor or analogy to suit
From Finance to Forensics
After much discussion and discarded
comparisons, Nina decided that when a potential employer would ask her some
version of why she should be hired or what made her unique, she would reply,
“Think of your favorite TV crime show.” (pause) ”You know how the medical
examiner, based on experience and intuition, always finds less than obvious
information that ultimately leads to the arrest of the murderer? Well, I am like
that examiner. Anyone can look at information, but I also have a track record
for finding things that others miss. For example,… (tell a story)… And (relate
back to employer’s situation) I will do that here for you, particularly as your
company is …”
Now Nina is not just another risk
In Your World
Where do clients, employees, or other
groups get stuck on the value you provide? How can you get them to shift the way
they see you through a totally different lens?
Loosen up your metaphorical
from the brilliant Tina Seelig, Executive Director,
Stanford Technology Ventures Program at Stanford University
Make What You Say Pay — With Metaphors.
Follow the Zeitgeist
Fast Company magazine features an article this
month called “The Visual Shift” about the “image-obsessed times” in which we
live and leads off with this comment from Joe Stewart, Partner and Global
Creative Director, Huge : “The ability to instantly communicate through
imagery now seems to transcend everything for businesses—for content creators,
for e-commerce companies, for mass brands .”
There’s a reason this is happening and it is as old as cave man days. We are
wired to process visuals quickly and respond to them emotionally. The Internet
just makes this easier and faster to do. If you are not also leveraging imagery
found in metaphors and analogies to communicate your ideas, do not be surprised
when what you say misses its mark.
*Chosen Top Sales Book of the Month for April by Top Sales World*
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