One of the first concepts I learned when studying sales and marketing was that of the "elevator speech." The concept is simple - if you had only 30 seconds (presumably in an elevator) to tell someone why your product or service was worth buying, what would you say? The goal of an effective elevator speech is to get 30 more seconds of the person's time and attention; that process repeats until, as the story goes, you make the sale. Elevator speeches must be concise, to the point, and interesting enough to hold someone's attention.
I get plenty of opportunities to practice my Whitworth elevator speech. A quick introduction to someone who knows little about Whitworth almost invariably leads to this request: "Tell me about Whitworth." I don't always say exactly the same things. I try to fine-tune my speech to find the most compelling words to capture the listener's attention. There's so much to say. Where do I start?
I recently asked several good Whitworth friends to give me their Whitworth elevator speeches. These were folks who, I knew, had plenty of practice extolling Whitworth's virtues. Here's just a sampling:
"Whitworth provides a supportive environment in which students are encouraged to learn how to think as opposed to being told what to think. As a result, students come out as better decision-makers, not just better rule-followers. I appreciate the deep commitment of faculty to the students, not only to inspire lifelong learning, but also to know and follow Christ more deeply. Whitworth provides an education of both mind and heart that is transformative and rare. You will not find a better university experience anywhere."
"It takes courage to stand where Whitworth stands in the educational landscape - committed to the minds and hearts of students. Whitworth provides an important, enriching and supportive environment for young people to explore new ideas, both intellectually and faithfully. The professors are vibrant and passionate about both intellectual pursuits and their Christian faith. Thinking deeply about faith and learning strengthens students as they leave Whitworth to become leaders in the world."
"I am thrilled with the 22-year-old Whitworth graduate. The student life staff talks about 'growing adults,' and the residence life experience does just that. In the classroom, Whitworth challenges and stretches students' minds under the guidance of Christian faculty. It is exactly that experience I wanted for my own children."
Aren't those great? I'm sold.
As you interact with people who want to know more about Whitworth, what's your elevator speech? I'd love to hear it. Send it in and we'll publish the best ones. In the meantime, thanks for the ways you represent Whitworth.
And as always, please keep Whitworth in your prayers.