Get to the Point

People may avoid you if simply you talk endlessly and never say anything.

Meandering your way through business communications is no way to get ahead. To the contrary, people who can’t get to the point quickly tend to be ineffective and highly frustrated.

Do you always have to add ‘’one more thing ….’’ after you have finished talking?

Do you know if you take too long to get to the point?

  • People get up and leave the room before you are done talking
  • Your boss – or a potential buyer – says “no” before you are done with your pitch
  • Colleagues ask you a question that you just answered, which suggests they were daydreaming about a walk on the beach while you were pontificating
  • The meeting leader calls Security to physically remove you from the podium

Basically, the more often you say, “One more thing,” the greater the odds that you failed to get to your point fast enough.

Rule-of-thumb is that you should have just ONE point. However, you will find that many – perhaps most – people have countless points when they start talking.

For example, a talk on employee compensation will veer towards interviewing techniques, touch on a recent vacation the author took in Sweden and close with the suggestion that your computer may need to be rebooted more often.

The next time you walk into your superior’s office, meet with a prospective client, or interview for a job, try this:

  1. Before you begin, set one objective for the meeting.
  2. Decide in advance on a maximum of three points you wish to make.
  3. Everything you say and do should be focused on achieving your one objective and getting across no more than three points.
  4. Don’t forget to listen, because the other person may already agree with you. Only bad salespeople keep selling after the client says “Yes”.
  5. Remember, hearing is not listening.

Suresh Shah, Pathfinders Enterprise

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