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Saying it without negative words

One of the bits of advice I have for those starting up a new business is to focus on explaining what you are doing without using any negative words.

Put simply: Explain what you are, rather than what you’re not.

This can be extremely difficult to do–especially early on.

I’ve run into more than one business startup where the founders were quite adroit at saying what their business wasn’t. They would proclaim, “We are not going to be like X” or “We will never do Y.”

Unfortunately, knowing what you’re not doesn’t effectively explain what you are.

So my advice is work through a description of what you’re doing–pruning out any “negative” words. It can be an illuminating exercise.

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