Fri, Jun 13, 2014

Share Your Authenticity (and Other Tips for Pitching Well)

This and next week I’m at the Unreasonable Institute in Boulder, Colorado, working with this year’s fellows on their businesses. Today the fellows will present at the Unreasonable Launchpad, a massive pitch event Unreasonable puts on.

As you can imagine: Emotions are running high and the fellows are feverishly practicing their pitches. Whilst working with the fellows on their pitches, their delivery and stage presence, a couple of things came up again and again — and chances are they also show up in your pitches as well:

“When pitching — be truly authentic. And share your authenticity with your audience. That’s how you win!”

  • Drop the “will/should/could”: When you describe the future you create, don’t say: “We will create x” or “We should be able to do y” or “We could solve z”. Be confident and claim your stake — you are creating x and you are able to do y and you are solving z.
  • Never end your pitch/speech with “Thank you”. It’s a habit which a lot of us have (yours truly included) — and it weakens your pitch. End with a short, strong, concise statement and let this statement hang in the air. It’s so much more powerful!
  • Most importantly: Be authentic. Truly authentic. And share your authenticity with your audience. Don’t try to be someone else, don’t emulate the delivery of someone else, don’t think you need to do things a certain way. We want YOU. The authentic you — with all the little quirks which make you unique. Just trust yourself and be you — you will be fine.

With that: Good luck to all the Unreasonable fellows for tonight and to all of you, my fellow Heretics, for all the pitches you will do in your careers!

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