Traditionally, salespeople are told not to use jargon and to avoid acronyms and there's a really good reason for that. The person in front of you might not understand what you're talking about and we've all been there. That's super awkward, when someone's saying something to us and we think we really should understand and we don't. And it's so easy to slip into, especially when you're a specialist in your industry.
It made no sense and actually it meant they weren't focusing on my bigger message because they were still trying to work out what that little set of words meant.
What jargon or acronyms do you use every day?
Way back in the day, I used to train accountants and guess what? I'm not an accountant. So the first thing that they were looking at me and wanting to know is where was my credibility? So in order to hook that really quickly, one of the very first things that I did was I learned one of the hot topics at the time, which was the FRSSE 97. I'm showing my age now but the FRESSE was the financial reporting standards for small entities. It was a specialist piece of legislation that was coming through that was affecting accountants across the board at that point in time. What was fantastic was as part of my introduction to that day's workshop, I used to use reference to that standard and how the workshop was going to show them how to really effectively deal with that, with the software we were looking at. My evident understanding of that piece of legislation immediately elevated my credibility, and what it really meant was that I was easily able to continue to work with those accountants across the rest of the day. In fact, quite often people would ask, where it was that I qualified and when I had been in practice. In reality, I was an IT trainer, I didn't need to be an accountant in order to support that group of people in learning what they needed to about that software. My deep level of understanding of their industry and their own drivers demonstrated my credibility.
Speaking your customers' language can give you credibility
I'd love to know what jargon and acronyms you're currently using, so drop it in the comments.