It is easy to use the short messages of Twitter, texting, blackberry, etc., as the standard for communications. But when it comes to networking, when being clear matter most, we often speak or send e-mails or that only communicate
incomplete thoughts. (Okay, I know that was a cheap parlor trick)
A few years ago, I saw Edward Tufte (www.edwardtufte.com), who is an expert in communication of information, and how he disliked Powerpoint bullet points – because of its limits on communication.
I found that is what is going on today. At more networking meetings than I care to remember, I find myself asking questions not for more information, but simply to clarify what I heard. Excuse me? Sorry, XME?
I am the first to tell you to avoid excessive detail when networking. Be you must be clear on the key points you need to communicate (see my post “The 3 Question Test after Networking”).
My recommendation: Write out your key pitch. Taking a lesson from Mr. Tufte, it can be more than 30 seconds, if done well. Also, it’s still called networking, not Twittering, for a reason. Ask a friend to listen to your pitch to help call out incomplete or unclear thoughts. I know it can be a bit embarrassing to ask a friend sit through the pitch. But, it’s well worth the time and effort.