“If you want to make sure your words matter to your clients, do this.”


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But what follows … not so much.

I was sitting in my office, doing some out-of-the-box thinking on how I could get my company’s business-development efforts up to the next level, so we could pivot to a new paradigm shift for our clients and prospective clients. But first, I needed to touch base with my finance team to make sure our presentations and proposals had all the right ROI and KPI value-added metrics. That they were granular enough to make sure our bottom-line recommendations were solid and scalable to get buy-in from all our client audiences. Not to mention figuring out a way to monetize those recommendations moving forward.

In my client presentations, I’d elaborate on those objectives, then talk about raising the bar, about the need to breakthrough SILOs, and how my company would take a 30,000-foot view, then conduct a collaborative, and data-driven deep dive. Drill down to study all the analytics, and circle back to close-the-loop, making sure everything was synergized and homogenized. Emphasize that we were all on the same page. Then, make sure we had the right bandwidth to address all the hurdles we might be facing. In other words, do some agile, 360-degree, client-focused thinking. Color outside the lines.

I’d share how we’d take an innovative, forward-thinking, best practices approach, and let the client and prospective clients know that we were right-sized for them, and were team players. That we’d do all the heavy lifting to get their unified message across with the right persona and influencer qualities, all of it to be driven by a disruptive, yet seamless approach. As change agents, we will employ cutting edge, optimized blue-sky thinking that will move the needle, to make their messages go viral, and those messages will be aligned, and synergistic with their customer journey. I’d also mention, how my company will conduct our due diligence, making sure we stressed our relative core competencies, and how we’ll manage expectations. To make sure all the optics were also right with their clients, prospects, and their corporate culture. It will be a real win-win situation. A game-changer. And if there were any questions after the presentation, we could take it offline.

Once we were awarded the business, I’d explain how the need to make sure everyone on the client’s team and our team was always on the same page, simpatico, and kept in the loop. How we’d be a valued and trusted partner. And, in order to push the envelope, how we’d leverage our experience, and conduct ideation sessions to address any elephants in the room, and we’d open our kimonos to explain the dynamics of our integrated, results-oriented, state-of-the-art solutions so we can hit the ground running. To make it revenue-impactful, we’d also help contact the client’s targeted prospects in the pipeline funnel, by going after the low-hanging fruit in a proactive manner designed to address their pain points. And our team environment would make certain everyone was empowered to help fast track the program while keeping our collective value-proposition messages on point. I’d stress that type of environment is important because you don’t know what you don’t know.

Finally, I’d talk about the next steps, and tell them if they required any additional information the client can always feel free to reach out and ping me.

Reality check.
I’ve been around awhile, and probably like you, have heard and continue to hear and see a ton of buzzwords, clichés, and catchword phrases in client meetings, presentations, and proposals. Thought it would be interesting to see how many I could cram into an article that was somewhat realistic and humorous, but also reflected how those buzzwords, clichés, and phrases probably sound to clients and prospective clients. (By the way, there were over 8o of them in this story.)

Can I be honest with you? (There’s one.) At the end of the day, (There’s another one.) I’m pretty sure we’re all guilty of using buzzwords and clichés to some extent (including moi).

But, it’s your choice. You can be viewed by your clients as an original thinker. Or someone who speaks and writes in “Buzzwords, and Clichés wrapped in Banality.”

My advice? Make a list of all those clichés and stop using them.

Or you’ll become a one.

NOTE: Images are from pexels.

Bob Musial
Bob Musial is a business development coach, author of "Soft Skills. Hard Returns." and humorist who works with professionals to help improve their competency in getting, keeping and expanding business. He's easy to reach. Pretty easy to talk with too.


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