Former US President, Woodrow Wilson once said: “If I am to speak for 10 minutes, I need a week for preparation; if 15 minutes, three days; if half an hour, two days; if an hour, I am ready now.”
In today’s fast-paced world of side hustles, multi-tasking, and wearing different hats as business leader, parent, husband or wife, community leader and so on, getting to the point quickly matters more than ever.
The precision to capture and manage elusive mindshare of your target is one of the key determinants of success business and professional success.
If you are wordy or long winded, you definitely lose people’s attention. No one will have time and patience to go through your, speeches, long emails, proposals or presentations.
Brevity is not only essential element of communication. It is the core pillar of business. Unless you are a supermarket or some other one-stop store, having a book for a catalogue is a liability and not an asset.
Sometimes you go to a restaurant that prepares nearly every dish that a customer may conceive and order. The kitchen is a beehive of activity serving very modest customers and the establishment is financially struggling to pay essential bills.
You go into another specialty restaurant that serves few products and find it is always full.
Brevity calls for precision and adequate preparation. It takes time to study the market and know who your real customers are so that you can target them instead of broadcasting your message.
It takes time and patience to develop or select one product that you can sell to a thousand customers than it takes to choose several products that you have to sell to several people to push one thousand.
It is always advisable in order to succeed to look for quality and not quantity. In tough times such as the one we are in, it is very easy to think that the way to get financial breakthrough is to increase your product range, side hustles or income generation streams. This is not only costly, energy draining but also counterproductive. The best decision is to focus on how to achieve much with less within your area of specialisation.
It is evident that that most successful enterprises started by producing and selling few products. Some of them maintain very narrow catalogue throughout their lives while few diversify far much later after they have established themselves well in the market.
Pareto law states that 80 percent of your consequences come from 20 percent of your causes. It means eighty percent of your income comes from 20 percent of your activities.
If you could know and isolate the 20 percent of your products or activities that contribute to 80 percent of your bottom line, you could turn around your life and business within a very short time.
Unfortunately, that requires time and hard work and most of us like easy things and are impatient.
This is why Woodrow Wilson figuratively said that he need a whole week to prepare a 15 min speech and no time to prepare for one-hour speech.
Mr Kiunga is a business trainer and the author of The Art of Entrepreneurship: Strategies to Succeed in a Competitive Market. [email protected]