(Or how I embarrassed myself in front of a room full of people.)

I’ve been at a negotiation seminar all weekend when during the last day I went up on stage to share my 30 second escalator speech. I delivered it only to be told I was insulting my client! I said, after several edits, “Who I work with is IT Managers who has the problem of unorganized web architecture. I help them attain more clients and build loyalty.” It sounded good to me!

However, the leader of the seminar pointed out to me that it is very likely that my client is someone who created that system and consequently would be quite put out by that statement.

After some work I ended up with, “Who I work with are web based businesses who would like to work with the customers they didn’t know they had.”

Much better right? Right. The experience taught me something though. As professionals we often talk in the language of the people we work with. We need to remember when engaging our audience(s) that they may not always known or understand what it is we do. We need to always keep in mind our audience. Consider it user experience within language…