On a stage without stage

by | Sep 21, 2015 | Networking

What in an elevator pitch counts most, is passion. The more enthusiastic you tell your story, the more likely that this enthusiasm will spread to the other.

“I’m Jochem Klijn and I help you to stop selling and start to be bought.”
That’s my elevator pitch every week and I tell it to 100 people, every week. No, off course I won’t get into contact with all 100 people at a networking reception, and I am all the time in an an elevator. I tell my elevator pitch during training sessions and seminars. On a stage.

Which offers me an advantage? Yes and no.

Yes, because I do not have to tell my story 100 times: I get to 100 people at once. But on the other hand … speak on stage has one major disadvantage: you never know whether you have a podium.

I have to explain.

What in an elevator pitch counts most is passion. How enthusiastic you tell your story, the more likely that this enthusiasm will spread to the other. And the more likely also that other story told again by third parties – with the same glint in his eyes.

But alas, passion comes with a price. Because yes, maybe people let themselves be carried away by your red head and crescendo voice – the problem is that you do too. You’re passionate, so you go through 10, 20 minutes, half an hour. And so there will be no last sentence, and certainly not an issue, and you suddenly think interlocutors that last empty spot will follow talks slowly in their agenda. With passion, perhaps, but at the same time with little empathy.

In that case you forgot one thing. You have not checked if you have a podium.

How do you do that? You share your elevator pitch up into small pieces. And after every bit you look closely at the person with whom you talk. Is there something in return? A question? A nod interested? A glint in the eyes of the other? Only then will you know that you can continue. But watch your interlocutors dreamily around, then you better overturn the helm. Then ask you a few questions about them.

But I can not do. For there is one place where it is difficult to detect whether you have such a stage. On a stage. I can not see all 100 people whether they are still interested. And if a few start to look around, I can go amiss inquire how they are doing.

So what do I do? The only thing I can do. Tell my story. With maximum passion.

And often appears that it works anyway. Because you know what I get to hear from people? They thought that was a great evening. Fun, fun, inspiring: they are full of energy. But when I ask what they remember in details, it sometimes remains eerily silent.

What remained, is my passion.