We’ve all heard the adage of having to describe what it is you do in a five-minute elevator speech, some may find that an easy ask where others struggle. Imagine what it is like to gain a collective five-minute elevator speech across your member base.
Our members recently embarked on this journey determining that we needed to have a collective value proposition that clearly articulated what it is we do and how we are unique. Our Unique Value Proposition (UVP) was born from this.
Imagine taking eleven thought leaders with diverse backgrounds, expertise, skills and knowledge on community leadership development and put them in a room where they have 30 minutes in which to agree a set of principles to then develop our UVP. In my experience and this was certainly the case during this exercise, your ability to be creative under time pressures can produce alarming results.
Our facilitator, Andrew Huffer, took us through a process of first of all identifying our core purpose. Easy, we thought as we quickly agreed we are about “Effective leadership for vibrant regional communities.” Next we had to brainstorm all the key words that came to mind that identified where we make a difference. A bit trickier as we came up with more than 30 words which we then had to distil into key sentences.
As the clock chimed the end of the allocated 30 minutes we came away from the session with a good working draft in which to present the following day. We certainly lived our values during this exercise particularly in respect to leveraging our collective intellect and value diversity.
COLLABORATION was the key to the success of part 1.
But this was only the beginning. We now had to present the working model to our various board members to gain their thoughts, being mindful that this exercise was not about word smithing. Generally speaking, the draft was well received and after the presentation we agreed to form a committee to finalise the UVP by the end of September. That gave us a 3-4 week turnaround.
At the risk of making this a lengthy story let’s jump ahead to where we are today.
From our 30-minute time pressured session our committee then developed a one page UVP that clearly articulates the unique value we offer to our stakeholders. Our UVP is not about remembering all the words associated with it BUT reminds us of participants and alumnus leadership journey. If you like they are story prompts and therefore your elevator speech becomes a story of impact.
Importantly, even though our members and their programs are unique to their regions our overarching collective impact is the same. We GROW CAPABILITY, We FOSTER CONNECTIONS, We EMPOWER PEOPLE and We INSPIRE CONFIDENCE and we do this through the development of a new generation of leaders, across a comprehensive coverage of rural and regional Victoria whilst ensuring a diversity of participants that reflect our communities.
Our full UVP is shown below.