Remember The Hollies?

...a long cool woman in a black dress?

I've always loved this song by The Hollies, but if you describe someone you're looking for this way you'll be introduced to several different women.

Why? No one else is able to identify exactly who you're looking for. Too many relative words were used and whenever that's the case there is always misunderstanding.

Let's break this down to underscore the importance of your team's being able to specifically describe their ideal target prospect so others can refer them to the right people. Also, so that when in conversation with a prospect your team recognizes relative terms and asks more questions to gain clarity of direction.

A long cool woman in a black dress

This song title has 3 relative words and 1 relative term.

  • Long What about her is long? Her hair? Her fingernails? Her legs? Is it about her height? If so, what do they believe is 'long', 5'10", 6'? Or, do they mean she's slender? How do they define slender, size 4 or 10? After all, someone who weights 300 pounds might find another who weights 180 to be slender.

  • Cool By cool are they referring to her demeanor; that she's a bit aloof and doesn't hang with a crowd? Might they mean that she's someone who is up on the hottest trends? Or, is she fun and people like having her around so she's someone you would want to show up at one of your parties?

  • Woman What is the age of this female? A 22-year old might think a woman to be the same age as their mother. To a 40-year old male, a woman might be 30+. Everyone has a bit of a different take on when a young lady crosses the line and is described as a woman.

  • Black dress Every woman I know has at least one black dress in her closet. Are they looking for someone wearing a short, mid-length or long dress? Is it long-sleeve, short-sleeve, sleeveless, strapless, backless, an evening gown, A-line, a sheath? Is it solid black?

You get it. If we want others to help us find someone so that we can gain an introduction or referral, we need to be able to clearly describe them.

If we want to clearly understand what our prospects and clients are asking of us we need to ask questions when they use relative terms so we avoid misinterpretation.

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