When we wish to sell a new product or a new idea to a customer, the subject must be properly explained, because otherwise there will be no sale.
Particularly when we talk to customers, we unfortunately often talk to what I call an “Assistant Wonderful”. These are very important people in their organization, like Assistant Treasurers or Deputy Managing Directors. However, even though they are important in their organization, they can only recommend that something new be done. Before the deal really gets done, these Assistant Wonderfuls must explain it to their boss. Only when the boss understands will she approve it, and only at that point the deal can be completed.
The above means, that with our explanation to the Assistant Wonderful, we must enable this Assistant Wonderful to explain the new idea so well to the boss that the boss understands it. One reason why bosses are bosses is, that they will never approve anything that they do not understand.
There are three levels of understanding, and we must reach the third level:
- First level means that you completely understand, but cannot explain.
This first level is required for bosses, because otherwise there will be no approval and no deal.
- Second level means that you can explain well enough, so that your listener reaches the first level. This second level is required for Assistant Wonderfuls, so that they can explain to their bosses and enable them to reach the first level.
- Third level means that you can explain so well, complete and encompassing, that your listener reaches the second level. This third level is required for sales people, so that they can explain to the Assistant Wonderfuls and enable them to reach the second level. The Assistant Wonderfuls need this second level of understanding, so that they (without our help) can successfully explain to their bosses, and enable those bosses to reach the first level of understanding. Once bosses understand, they will decide.