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Arlington, MA 02476




“No helping!” My exasperated 4-year-old pushes my arm away and treads water next to me in the pool, distracting me for the split second it takes her 3-year-old sister’s head to slip underwater.

I race over and scoop up the 3-year-old,

Studying her scrunched up eyes and pursed lips for signs of distress.

With her eyes still closed,

She turns her head towards me,

And breaks into a wide grin.


No harm done.

In fact,

She thought it was fun.

I start breathing again.

And it gets me thinking about your Elevator Pitch.

Because it turns out that I was hovering over my 4-year-old

(much to her annoyance)

While my 3-year-old desperately needed my help.

And so many people

Spend so much time

Forcing their Elevator Pitch

On people who aren’t really listening.

When it’s much more productive

And rewarding

To find the people

Who can really use your help.

So the next time

You find yourself

Trying to convince someone…


Smile warmly.

Thank them for their time

And go strike up a conversation with someone else.

Are you trying too hard to start conversations?

4 comments on “Underwater

  1. I don’t think you’ve followed the analogy far enough. Your 4-year old didn’t need or want your help AT THAT TIME, but undoubtedly she will need your help at some future time. And to keep her safe you still need to keep a watchful eye on her. So taking your analogy a bit further, don’t push somebody who’s not interested right now, but if you have any kind of ongoing relationship with them, keep an eye on them so you’ll know when the time comes that they can use your help.

    I do have to say that I found it a bit forced that your immediate reaction to the feeling of relief that your 3-year-old was unharmed was to think about your clients’ elevator pitches. Either that, or you’re one seriously weird dude!

    1. Hi Mark,

      Thanks for posting and for expanding on the analogy! That’s a great insight about both my daughter and the nature of business networking relationships. By keeping in touch on a regular basis you’ll be in the right place at the right time FOR THEM.

      And by the way, I am a seriously weird dude. Thanks for noticing!


  2. I’ve found that “pushing” people to listen doesn’t get me anywhere. Like you said, just move onto the next one and be interesting, vs being determined to make them listen.

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