Light has what we call in physics, wave particle duality. This is very interesting because it defies the laws of classical Newtonian physics. Waves can move particles or travel on particles but not BE particles. Thus, light being both a particle and a wave makes it very unique and complex.

There. Now you know something about light, right?

Uh.

See what happens when we don’t get the idea we wish to convey into the language of the receiver? Maybe you didn’t understand  “particle duality’. And if you didn’t really understand it, you probably didn’t care.

And that’s what happens when we try to sell something that we are familiar with but maybe the prospect isn’t. We speak ‘our’ language. And if the prospect doesn’t understand, he generally doesn’t care. And if he doesn’t care, he won’t buy.

So that means we should dumb down the presentation, right? Wrong. It means we  should use the language familiar to the audience and we should tell the audience why they should care.

If you’re asked to speak to a group of people who speak only Italian but you do not speak Italian, are you dumbing down your speech by translating it to Italian? Of course not.

So before you lose a prospect by blitzing them with features and benefits that they neither understand or care about, start by learning their goals. And in the process, learn their language. Only then can you address their goals in the language they will understand—and care about. And if they care about it, you just might have a buyer.

Oh yes…the light thing. We can shoot a single photon, that’s a light particle, at a wall and get a dot. So we know that proton made it to the wall. If we shot a bunch of those protons in a row through a slit, we’ll get a blurred line on the wall—that’s what a wave would do. But a proton must travel in a straight line! So it can’t be a wave. But it is. So now you see why light is a wave and a particle. Don’t really understand that? No one does! But at least now you know about something really interesting!

Chris Reich, Author of TeachU’s Business Talk Blog
[email protected]