Language, whether written or spoken or in whatever form it comes is how messages are transferred from one to the other. The form of communication could be many things but the language used conveys the actual meaning between both parties. This is why language is so important and how it is used needs to be considered at all times. How is language used. We use language to hide or conceal or to uplift and move people forward. Language can be used to change meaning or set the meaning of something. This post will examine some examples of how we use language and how that meaning can be shaped to obtain the strategy you want to accomplish and get the buy in you need to accomplish your strategy and goals.
- First, the most current example, is the current “War on Terror” or the battle against ISIL. Depending on who you listen to this is a war or it’s a battle against an extremist group. There is another rub in the language used. Some say that the country is at odds, and the world, with extremists who use religion to justify their actions, and some say it is Muslim extremists. The use of either phrase can excite or anger one way or the other. Neither one is right and neither one is wrong. The War on Terror is a harsh way of saying it allowing the justification of troops and militaristic lockdowns and other language can make people feel safer and not as concerned about being attacked. Which one is right? There is no right or wrong here, just what message does the group or person want to convey. Another example on this topic is the gruesome and despicable videos ISIL uses when they kill people against them. You might ask why is this a language? To some it insites anger or fear or both and to others it encourages them and shows that ISIL is strong and they want to join. There are many concepts in sub text here that won’t be addressed, but it is all carefully chosen language that gets the meaning.
- Second, Affordable Care Act verses Health Care Reform. When the law was being introduced it originally was called health care reform. People got upset as they saw the law and the bill not as a reform but just a way to overcomplicate the healthcare system and make things difficult. It was pulled back then reintroduced with the term Affordable Care Act. The actual proposed bill did not change at all however the response to it did. Now some people were more behind it than others but the vitrial that was seen to the reform bill was not there as much, as people heard affordable care and who can’t support that. Whether you like the b ill in its current form or not, this was a masterful use of language and changing the same picture but conveying a different meaning.
- Another example could be in business when people use the term Sales verses Business Development.
- What is Sales? Sales is:
- The hunting for a deal – turning a lead into a client
- Handling objections
- Building relationships
- Closing a client
- The process of Lead Generation
- Building relationship to further what the company does
Simple, some people don’t want to enter into sales but under the guise of business development people will do the job of sales because they are not a sale people they are in business development. It is also a softer approach to clients. Instead of saying I’m the director of sales I can say I’m the director of business development.
This is a psychological ploy that everyone uses. Sales has a negative connotation in our society. Salespeople are sleazy, they are evil, they are conmen or con women. No one wants to be a salesperson and no one wants to be sold. Consultative selling was born to counteract this feeling. Consultative Selling is working with the customer, listening to their needs and finding solutions for their needs. However, there is still a large push to move away from the word sales, why?
Again, it’s the psychological reaction that drives the phrase usage of business development. With companies trying to avoid negative stigma from attracting good talent that don’t want to be salespeople and to keep from alienating companies. This destroys what sales really is.
Is being a salesperson really that bad? No it’s not. Business Development is a great position and is something I do and do well. I also do sales, however in an organization that is large enough they are two distinct roles. Sales people have to generate leads, as waiting for someone to get salespeople leads could mean they are not successful, but a great business development person doesn’t have the time to close the sell as they have to continually develop lead generation to keep sales going.
- What do you think about the use of words like business development to mask their true meaning?
In conversations with a few people I’m constantly asked how to explain this term verses that term and what they really are. So I figured I would create a series of posts explaining financial terms for everyone to understand. If there are terms not listed on here please let me know so I can get them definitions and get them posted. Here we go with part I:
- Financial Planning – It’s a process not a one-time event that looks at least 6 key areas of your financial situation and addresses an overall strategy and specifics for each area to accomplish your goals. Effective financial plans are all written and come with specific and actionable recommendations
- Fin Advisor – Could be a Financial Planner but not necessarily. This is someone that advises you one aspect of your financial situation whether it be taxes, investments, insurance, or something else.
- Fiscal Cliff – A fancy term for where the raising of taxes is met with automatic spending cuts potentially leading to reduce dollars in the economy and thus further job losses.
- Debt Ceiling – The nations credit card limit. This is maximum amount they are allowed to borrow from. Think of it like this, every raise of the debt ceiling is like that new card you got in the mail that you could now buy more on. Eventually you have to pay it off though.
- Large Cap – A stock term describing the size of the company. These investments are generally stable and low performers but steady returners. Think of this like those high priced houses behind the gates. They’ll maintain their value and will increase but slightly but also won’t lose their value drastically either.
- Middle Companies – The middle ground between a small company and a large company. These are those houses just outside of the gates. They increase in value but are strong producers and will go up in value but will also get hard quickly as well.
- Small Company – These are smaller companies, riskier companies. These are the spec houses where maybe the neighborhood is going to be gentrified or a new office building will be added. They can increase rapidly or they can never materialize a real gamble.
- International – Stocks that are headquartered in another country. So think of it as you owned a house in Canada or somewhere other than here, it’s international.
- Diversification/Allocation – There are a lot of fancy terms or descriptions for this category. Simply put it is an opportunity spread out dollars along several different investment categories and take advantages of wins and losses across the board.
How language is used can clarify or it can confuse, If there is a message you want to get across think about the language you use and how is it received? What language do you use?
Rodney Mogen, is the president of solveurpuzzles, a business focused company. Helping financial advisors and insurance agents solve their case troubles and issues. Rodney is also a small business advisor focused on developing financial strategies for small business owners and helping them develop their own strategy and ideas to grow, sell, develop the way they want. He is focused on creating proper financial strategies for Advisors and business owners to assist them in their day to day duties by solving their financial puzzles. Rodney is also the Director of Financial Strategy for The Evans Group. Check out more information at www.solvurpuzzles.com and the financial strategy work for The Evans Group at www.financialselectservices.com.