Stop Chasing Away the People You Meet

I avoid all conferences where in fact the sole purpose of the function is for entrepreneurs to network.


Because each and every time I go, I usually end up meeting individuals who pitch me their ideas, but do not know on how best to gauge my interest. They continue steadily to talk and ramble on, even after my eyes begin to wander, because:

  • They just don’t obtain it.

  • They don’t get how exactly to pitch.

  • They don’t get how exactly to catch my interest.

  • Even worse, they don’t get developing a relationship.

So, I end up suffering at the expense of my evening.

Even though I don’t head to events, numerous others are forced to suffer to listen to these gut-wrenching pitches.

Then your entrepreneurs goes home, thinks they made some successful relationships, but slowly begins to understand that everyone starts hiding from their website just like the plague.

But, wait. There’s a remedy to all or any this.

In case you have a concept, or a business… You should know this theory.

This theory will revolutionize just how your audience treats you. Particularly if there’s someone important in the crowd listening, such as for example myself, an investor, or a potential business partner. Someone you don’t want to chase away.

That concept is named the "Iceberg Theory."

What’s the Iceberg Theory?

It’s about the what verses the how.

Ninety percent of that time period, people ask entrepreneurs what they do. The other ten percent of that time period, people like me are avoiding them.


Because 99 percent of time, entrepreneurs never answer what they do. Instead, they make an effort to tell their audience how they do what they do.

When you answer a "what" question with a "how" answer, you run the chance of having the individual you speak to never want to speak to you again. Or, if they’re a bit nicer than me, you’d you need to be confusing your audience right out from the gate.

But how does the Iceberg Theory work?

I talked to Ryan Foland, Partner at InfluenceTree and Director of Digital Strategy at the University of Irvine. Somehow he includes a bigger attention span and can deal with each one of these horrible pitches all day long. Regardless…

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They are the five ideas to understanding the Iceberg Theory and implementing them into your business:

1. Answer fully the question

There is value in answering a "what" question with a "what" answer. Ryan feels this prevents every confusion when sharing your idea for the very first time. Plus, it lets your audience decide if they would like to continue asking questions or move on.

It’s important that folks share what they do first before engaging in the facts of how they do what they do.

Ryan mentioned that there surely is a huge difference between your words "what" and "how."

"What" begins at the top level, and usually describes things in an over-all sense.

Think about "what" as the tip of the iceberg that you see above the water’s surface.

For instance, when people ask me what I really do, I say I build personal brands. If they ask Ryan what he does, he says that he’s a communication strategist.

Focus on the what.

2. Don’t Assume Anything

Entrepreneurs tend to believe their audience knows everything. The problem is, they don’t.

On the other hand, the audience is normally another entrepreneur who only really wants to pitch their idea.

People don’t care what others do, they only value the problem that others solve.

Nonetheless it goes deeper than that.

They only value the problem others solve if it’s a problem they have.

The great thing that can be done is to stop let’s assume that your business idea offers the answer to everyone’s problem.

It is very important to learn if folks have the problem trying to be solved first.

3. KNOW VERY WELL WHAT the answer Is

Entrepreneurs will need to have a crystal-clear knowledge of how their business operates. They need to manage to reference the average person points that are highly relevant to the clients. Ryan feels that simply telling people just what a company does rather than getting into the facts of how everything works has more potential to spark a conversation.

Most startup presentations and pitches have an excessive amount of information, leaving the audience feeling bored, overwhelmed and wanting it to be over. Filled up with redundancies, inefficiencies and excessive detail, entrepreneurs generally, lose the interest of their listeners.

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When being told a concept for the very first time, keep it short. Don’t quit all the information. If the theory reaches all interesting, people will naturally be curious and wish to know more.

They’ll soon be asking questions such as for example, "How does that work?" or, "How can you do everything you do?"

Consider this as the iceberg below the top, which is a lot larger possesses specific information on your product or services. This is actually the livestock for the others of your conversations, however, not your introduction.

4. Create Connections With Problems and Solutions

Knowing what’s of interest to the individual you are speaking with, it’s time to deliver relevant components of how your business works. Don’t hesitate to provide less information initially, since it creates the opportunity to create real connections between your problem you’ve already identified and the way the solution can benefit the listener.

As dialogue continues, the "how" information could be added a way which allows your audience for connecting the dots of your trouble and how your solution works, for them.

5. Put YOUR OPINIONS within their Head

Ryan stated that the most challenging task requires getting a concept into someone else’s head. Spilling all the beans out from the gate results in less to go over and less for the audience to understand.

Ryan has seen this endlessly, in those awkward moments after a business owner opens up a fire hose on someone’s face. When the water is finally shut down, many people are soaked and there is nothing left to speak about.

Focus on sharing information from the end of the iceberg, then let them discover the rest under the surface as the dialogue continues organically.

Ryan realizes that the more entrepreneurs talk, the less people listen. The less entrepreneurs talk, the more folks ask questions. Questions are what highlights sights, and really helps to guide a productive and meaningful exchange of ideas.

Entrepreneurs who focus on what they do, rather than how they do it, will ultimately say less, have people listen more, and spark more valuable questions.

The magic happens when entrepreneurs dig deep into answering specific questions about their suggestions to others.

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