Single Scale Continuum

We can on occasion conjure a fiendishly evocative 2x2 of the 4-box model school to summon up a unique slant on a prospect situation which helps them then frame their options chiefly in our terms.

Indeed, such tool is often a bedrock of solution selling. Such as adapting the traditional stakeholder matrix for a view of the personalities on our bid from ♡ by $.

Such can be the pursuit of such a powerful weapon, the simple entry point can go overlooked. Left unused unless any fuller picture is gleaned.

Yet the single scale can sparkle alone.

I was reminded of this with American political hysteria this past week. First with perhaps the most frame-changing televised presidential debate. Second with a supreme court decision on the meaning of presidential immunity.

Needless to say, both seem to have been wildly misinterpreted more than accurately considered. Particularly polarised as we've sadly come to expect.

Wherever your position - if indeed you have one at all - two charts caught my eye. Both offer ideas for our solution push.

Above, how columnists of a key broadsheet appear to abandon the candidate on who's side they'd typically be bigtime flag-wavers for.

Below, the supposed leanings of the nine panelists that adjudicate at the country's final legal juncture.

It is not the veracity of these that's important.

It's how they convey their point.

What you can then do with the information portrayed.

And by how much you may need to act.

They use a straightforward grading. The former using a plain +/- eleven point scale. Akin to an expanded Likert treatment.

The latter straightens the horseshoe to take two poles and plots each somewhere in between along the continuum.

With each there's capacity to add a second axis. But sometimes, only the one is needed. An elegance can emerge.

I often give people confidence to grab a sheet and draw a line with two ends enhanced. Asking the audience to mark where they feel a particular issue sits.

Especially effective over video.

The ensuing discussion often golden.

As already mentioned, a horseshoe can offer an alternative to a flat line, and preference gradations also embellish well. More likely in our setting, the circle of a cycle can be a winner too.

Whichever you (practice, then) choose, the thrust is to get cracking with one and at least have a firm foundation, even if it doesn't grow into further dimensions.

Subscribe to Salespodder

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.