Half-a-minute waltzBy Wade Kwon
Itâ€™s called an elevator pitch, and Iâ€™m working on mine right now.
If someone asked you what you do or what you wanted to do, what would you tell them? You have 30 seconds, enough time for a short elevator ride.
I havenâ€™t thought about my elevator pitch in awhile, but it needs a polish. Most people donâ€™t think about it too often, unless theyâ€™re looking for venture capital and investors, or theyâ€™re going on job interviews.
Usually, I can think on my feet. But an elevator pitch is different: Youâ€™re performing on demand â€” as showman, salesman and entrepreneur.
Sales isnâ€™t my thing. And self-promotion is a big no-no.
Iâ€™ll get over it, eventually.
But can you dream big in 30 seconds? Are you an undiscovered actor working as a bookkeeper, or an undiscovered bookkeeper working as an actor? Can you pitch your idea for a novel or a gadget in such a short time?
Maybe that should be my next role: entrepreneurial consultant. I hone your grandiose schemes into a handful of dynamic sentences. You tell me your thing, I tell you your market. You tell me your advantage, I tell you your angle.
During the past year, Iâ€™ve heard a lot of pitches. I know which ones will fail, not from lack of funding or ingenuity, but lack of willpower. If you canâ€™t see it through, itâ€™s already dead.
But I am genuinely interested in what you have to say, even if Iâ€™m not buying. As for my own pitch, what I lack in initial smoothness, I make up for in persistence. I can get laughed out of the room a hundred times, but Iâ€™ll keep throwing it out there when I know itâ€™s a winner.
My boss used to say that there were no bad ideas, just ideas that werenâ€™t ready to be implemented. Thatâ€™s usually correct â€” though I have heard a few stinkers, but what do I know?
Ideas are a dime a dozen, but first they need to be verbalized clearly, compellingly and quickly.
The pitch is back.