This holiday season please remember that you are an ‘Organization Ambassador’.
These are the words I used just yesterday in front of an audience of rising stars and senior partners at a major Canadian consulting firm. My task was to address the audience about selling and promoting when we are not in a specific sales position.
The day before, I was very lucky to be in an interview with a senior executive for a new book I am writing when he used the phrase ‘organizational ambassadors’. This organization is high profile and not without its controversies. Many of the 800 or so employees will be attending holiday gatherings of some sort over the next couple of weeks. In his mind, these people are all ambassadors of the organization. He expects them to represent the company well and to be able to articulate the corporate vision when asked. He expects them to be promoting the company as a great employer for future recruits and he expects his ‘ambassadors’ to be able to identify opportunities (or threats) to the company and refer them to the right people soon afterwards.
To my audience of rising stars yesterday, I used this meeting the day before as a great example of what ambassadors can do for an organization. Their company, I told them, expects the same from them.
I am writing this post to suggest to most of you that your organization expects this of you as well.
You may not be in a sales position but you really are a sales person. Ok, let’s, instead, use my favourite new word – you are an ‘ambassador’. You are expected to represent the organization well, to be able to articulate the vision, promote a product or service when appropriate and to keep the radar on for great new recruits and potential issues we might need to deal with.
The scenario of a holiday party makes it easy to explain the power of the role of the ambassador. You are at a function with people you don’t know very well. Possibly your partner’s corporate event. Maybe a gathering of friends from the neighborhood. At some stage of the event someone is going to ask you what you do for living. This is the moment that your role as an ambassador begins.
By the way, I took some time yesterday to introduce the power of the 20 second elevator speech. Check out my previous blog on this topic. This is certainly the time of year that this can become a very handy tool.
No one is measuring your results in this role. No one is asking about your conversations this past weekend. No one is following up to see how many leads you generated for the company at last night’s party. No one is asking if you recruited any new potential employees.
But an organization with ‘ambassadors‘ like yourself, talking the talk, can only be a good thing for you, your customers and all of your fellow employees.
You are prepared for the role as Organization Ambassador?