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Get to the Point: Less is More

Mar 23, 2016 | BRIEF

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In the past 20 years, I have worked with hundreds—maybe even thousands—of leaders, executives, and military personnel and have heard countless stories about how someone’s inability to get to the point quickly transformed into disaster. Unfortunately the effect is real, immediate, and lasting.

Executives are bombarded every minute of their waking hours with information. They are regularly interrupted, easily distracted, and—quite often—grow increasingly impatient.

There is a time and a place for long conversations, but they typically are not in the “got a second?” office pop-ins or the daily scrum meetings. Your job is to capture and hold the attention of your leaders in five minutes…not 50.

Get to the Point Quickly

It’s not about how much you can say in a short amount of time, but rather how to say more with less. There is a common saying that when you give an executive time back in their day, they not only will use it, but they’ll appreciate it more than any other gift you might give.

Think about that the next time you need to provide information to a boss, a peer, or an executive. How can you give them time back?

But not only that, if you want to be successful in your career, land a dream job, or vie for a promotion, you have to be able to articulate what you need in as few words as possible.

The same is valid if you are a business owner or executive. Being able to explain what you need from your team in the first five minutes of a meeting is the difference between having an engaged audience or visibly watching them check out. You don’t want to be known as the person who talks too much.

This is why the BRIEF map is such an effective tool. If you take the time to provide the background, the relevance, the necessary information, the ending, and how you plan to follow-up (or what you need from your team) ahead of a meeting, you can go through it in less than five minutes and get what you need.

Suddenly you’ve not only become known as the person who gets to the point quickly, but one who delivers a clear and concise message, and is a pleasure to be around.

The less you say well, the more people will hear.

Less Definitely is More

I recently was invited to speak on Bootstrapping in America, here in Chicago. During that interview, we talked about how to get to the point quickly and why less is more.

You can watch it here.

Imagine now, if you will, you not only learn how to do this for yourself, but you implement it throughout your entire organization. Suddenly your two hour meetings become less than 20 minutes and everyone gets to work doing their jobs.

To do that, you can begin with The BRIEF Lab Level 1 Certification. It’s a 13-week online course that teaches you how to build brevity in your professional life and sets the stage for a master’s in brevity.

It is a simple and systematic way to gain the skill to stand out by being clear and concise.

Be better. Be brief.

Image Credit: Shutterstock


Want to know more about being brief? Check out The BRIEF Lab Level 1 Certification, the online course that helps you become a lean communicator.


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