Clarity is something that really should be more commonplace than it is. Whether you work in the public, private or third sector, clarity will get you far. It’s also the first step to becoming CHERISHed. Quite simply, in all aspects of life, if you want people to genuinely care about something you have to firstly tell them what ‘it’ is, and then why he or she should value ‘it’.
The pitch is key to this and it’s also an area where most managers need development. You will need to do this both internally and externally, as well as to wider stakeholders and the public. You must be brave and confident in telling people what you do and how much you cost. You have to make them all care. You have to convince them your service is worth supporting.
The elevator pitch
Importantly you need to refine those messages, to condense them to the point where you and your staff can all deliver an ‘elevator pitch’ for your service. That is a term much loved in the USA. Think Richard Branson, Duncan Bannatyne or Deborah Meaden. Dickie, Duncan and Debs get into your lift (all three of them together is probably beyond most people, so do not worry!) and they push the button for the 20th floor. You want them to invest in your business or your idea. You now have about 45 seconds tops to make a connection, get your story out and give them your card.
Sounds very un-public sector? We generally all only have 45 seconds these days to listen to other people’s pitches and decide if we care or not. So why should your public be any different? That’s how you maximise your chances of survival.
My next blog will look at what you need to do to create the perfect pitch but for now I’ll leave you with some questions to consider…
How would you rate your current ‘pitching skills’ and how would you rate those of your staff? Do you have a message the public understands about what you deliver? Do you even have a message your own organisation understands? If you undertook a random poll in the street and asked about how your service is delivered, what answers would you expect back?
If you don’t have a clear message, you can’t expect people to care about your service. Having a clear message about what you do, what you deliver and why people should care is essential for remaining part of the New Public Sector.
Taken from my best-selling book How to Survive Austerity, which is now available to buy on Amazon.