When validating your value proposition with customers, its tempting to talk all about your product and what it will do and how great it will be.
When meeting people at a social mixer, it’s tempting to talk about your accomplishment and your new startup and how it’s going.
When giving a presentation, especially when you have the chance to receive feedback, it’s tempting to defend your ideas or try to better explain what you tried (and failed) to say.
Here’s the thing…
You are just like the rest of us on the planet. You like to hear yourself talk. But when you realize all the valuable information you can get by simply shutting up and letting the other person tell you things, all of the sudden your world will open up in ways you never imagined. The other person wants to talk as much as you do. But they are giving you something you can’t get from your perspective; their perspective.
The customer will tell you want’s important them. You don’t have to…
The other person will tell you what they do for a living and how they might be able to help you, if you simply show interest in them and regard their business card with respect.
That “encourager” who hears your pitch for the first time, will tell you directly if you didn’t make something clear. You’ve heard your pitch before and they haven’t. First impressions ARE important. If they didn’t get it, that’s your fault.