For Impact


Clarifying vs. Convincing

For Impact Ideas | | Nick Fellers

Kerry and I were with an organization yesterday working on its funding message and then role playing visits. The executive director sounded like he was trying to CONVINCE me (and maybe himself) about the greatness of every program. As he spoke it felt like he was listing of all the great things about the program… an endless and unorganized litany of things about the program… I was lost.

I represented someone who had taken the meeting… with whom he’d already had an engaging conversation at 30,000′ about saving lives. At that point he should not be trying to CONVINCE me that the programs are great and wonderful. The mental exercise instead became to focus on CLARIFYING how we have the impact…

Moving from CONVINCE to CLARIFY was a transformational mental exercise. In a second run through he was punchy, convincing and clear. I saw the order in what they were doing and, in receiving less information I had fewer questions.

If you haven’t CONVINCED me around your WHY and WHAT then I’m not going to be convinced in the HOW. At that point the only real risk you lose is in losing me. Keep it simple.