Bounds Bite 3: don’t be “the best”

21st May 2014

There are a couple of problems with this:

  • Everyone else says they’re “the best” too. So saying you are doesn’t make you stand out
  • Saying “I am the best” ignores the beneficiary of what you do. If you like, you’re showing off about how great you are, whilst ignoring how great you can make them

So, instead of saying “I’m the best”, talk about how you can make other people the best. Focus on how what you do will benefit them. This works well when you are selling to other companies, selling yourself at job interviews, asking for a pay rise, asking to be put on important projects in your office etc.

A persuasive benefit has three components:

  • It includes the word “you” because it’s talking about the other person
  • It is something that they – not you – perceive as valuable
  • It will happen in the future, because it hasn’t happened to them yet

So, “I am the best Communication Consultant in the World” isn’t very compelling. Whereas “I can help you have greater impact every time you speak” is more likely to impress.

This future-focus is why I re-named benefits as AFTERs – why the other person is better off AFTER your involvement.

You see, people aren’t interested in what you do; they’re interested in what you cause. I don’t want an Accountant; I want to pay less tax. I don’t want a website; I want more sales. I don’t want a pair of glasses; I want to see better.

And I don’t want you.

But the AFTERs of you – well, that sounds much more compelling…

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