For all the discussion about having a perfect elevator speech, I consider them worthless. Each person you talk to has a different perspective and warrants a customized view of your services. Why have a stock speech?
Let's consider what the "elevator speech" is intended to do. It is a way to focus on the vital few elements of your value proposition so that you can quickly express them. It does not
mean that this is the only content you can or should have to describe who you are or what you can do. It certainly does not mean that you expect the conversation to end once the elevator speech is over. In fact, you want the conversation to expand, and this is where people who only prepare a single elevator speech lose out.
Are you ready for the (hopefully) inevitable question from a prospect? Are you prepared to address any aspect of your speech? One way to prepare is to create a mindmap of your elevator speech. For each element (e.g., geography, discipline, industry, client type, pricing, consulting philosophy, past clients, expected outcomes, contract terms, work style, proposed services) map out how you might react to a range of the prospect's follow up questions. The map can get quite big, and you will likely uncover areas you didn't expect. Now you are ready to give the elevator speech, recognizing that it is only the opening act.Tip:
Show the mindmap to your colleagues or current clients. Does it resonate with them? Do they recognize you and your firm's services? How would they follow up if you were giving them the elevator speech? What did you discover?© 2010 Institute of Management Consultants USA