Glaring backwards over her shoulder as she half swims, half stumbles away from us through the shallow water, my four-and-a-half-year-old daughter announces “I’m going to race by myself.”
It’s not just her need to win.
It’s her need to
Always be ahead of
Which must be especially frustrating for her
Since her cousins are five years ahead of her,
And her younger sister
Takes every opportunity to
Exploit the slightest opening to
Jump ahead and start taunting.
So my four and a half year old comes up with,
What some might call,
An ingenious approach.
Eliminate the competition.
She races against herself.
And it gets me thinking about your Elevator Pitch.
Because during a workshop earlier this week in Burlington,
I hear one participant mutter under her breath
“I need to find a new way that I’m unique.”
Her carefully crafted Elevator Pitch talks about how she “successfully completes projects.”
Yet, during the exercise where each person talks for a minute about the
Best project they ever worked on.
She realizes that everyone in the room
Successfully completes projects.
She’s exactly like everyone else.
But all is not lost!
While it is true that everyone successfully completes projects.
It’s also true that everyone’s success comes from a different project.
No two projects are the same.
So instead of saying that you worked on a project,
Say that you created a recycling day for the town of Concord
Or that you were up until 5am debugging a photo printing booth at a trade show in Germany
Or how proud you are that a high-risk teenager in your classroom got their high school diploma without spending any time in jail
Remember that no one else takes care of
The way you do.
When you generalize you sound like everyone else.
When you talk about a specific outcome
For a specific customer