- Create a low volume car, which would necessarily be expensive.
- Use that money to develop a medium volume car at a lower price.
- Use that money to create an affordable, high volume car.
- Provide solar power.
The above list is drawn word for word from Elon Musk’s original master plan for Tesla. What strikes me about this “Master Plan” is not the vision or the potential for global transformation, which we have seen develop before our eyes, but the simplicity with which Elon and his teams are able to convey their strategy. Tesla, a company that has consistently beaten the odds to become to become one of the most forward thinking companies in tech, was able to define their master plan of 10 years with less than 40 words. I really admire companies that are able to boil their strategy down to this level of simplicity, and I believe it is becoming more important than ever for companies around the tech industry, and other verticals as well, to attain a similar simple and direct tone.
Technology Conversations Obscure Value
Specifically around the business (sales) automation space, you tend to hear a lot of terms used by companies to support the value of their products and solutions. Technology is evolving at a rapid click, equipping marketing and sales teams with an endless pool of tech buzzwords.
While all of these terms are key to driving business technology and customer success forward, they can come to obscure the main value proposition toward which that technology drives. What is often the case, companies begin to speak more about their solution and its numerous capabilities than about how these solutions will benefit the customer. What Elon does so well is to not get lost talking about what their underlying technology (which is extremely complex and compelling) can do, but instead talking about how customers will be able to use his products. New and exciting technology by its nature is complex and confusing. Compelling conversations need to be based off of things customers can understand. By employing a strategy of successful straightforwardness, companies can truly begin to demonstrate value that resonates with the customer.
Outcomes to Drive Simplicity
To scale back, we must take the next step. To drive simpler conversations, we must move away from speaking about what the technology can do and begin speaking of the OUTCOMES that such technologies will create.
Companies can often get lost speaking of what their technology can do. Such conversations can become convoluted and unnecessary, taking a path on which potential customers and the greater public become disconnected from the essential value propositions. By centering on the outcomes that the customer requires, the conversations takes a much more direct and simplified approach.
Start by asking the question: What are the outcomes they want out of this solution? Build from there. Are they looking for a faster sales cycle? Increased revenue? A less convoluted approval process? In the end, this is the conversation that the customer wants to have – the ways you can improve their business on a specific, actionable level. Their needs are more important than the specific capabilities you can provide: don’t think about it in terms of a singular deal. Forge a partnership that sets their business up for long-term success and everyone benefits.