Professionals assume that if you have more things to offer, you can win the game of leverage. The challenge is how to get more influence, money, authority, options, and information that equate to greater power.
Yet few people have all of these assets at their disposal. So how can anyone gain valuable leverage in business?
Ironically, it is with less.
The most valuable resource that every executive craves – and few people can deliver – is getting valuable time back on their calendar. Their days are stacked: The typical manager gets interrupted six times an hour; 51% say that lengthy meeting are the biggest drain of their time; and the average worker spends 40% of their day sending and receiving 200 or more e-mails.
The leverage you gain with them is much shorter meetings, tighter e-mails, condensed conversations and highly concise and compelling communication.
Compared to your colleagues and competitors, you can get to the point faster than they can – and busy business leaders you work with can immediately feel the benefit.
Here is what the leverage of less looks like:
- Presentations with a point: Your PowerPoint hits the high notes: it’s well prepared, visual and professional. And you can go without slides, if needed.
- E-mails that grab their attention: Short and sweet summaries that always open with a strong subject line and clear call to action.
- Meetings that end a little early: You consistently give back valuable minutes on the agenda so they can tend to other competing priorities.
- Concise conversations: When you say “it will only take a few minutes,” it does. And they thank you for it.
In fact, when you interact with attention-starved, time-crunched executives, less is always more. With them, you gain a distinct advantage by practicing the business of brevity and lightening their load.
Less can quickly add up to more leverage.