Warren Buffet offers many great lessons that every small business owner can adopt. My favorite –

Talk and write like a human. Don’t embrace corporate speak. The conversational tone with your customers will help them relate to you better. Make them feel like they are doing business with a human and not a soulless corporation. A great example for this is in the article itself. Read what Buffet says –

 GEICO’s managers, it should be emphasized, were never enthusiastic about my idea. They warned me that instead of getting the cream of GEICO’s customers we would get the – – – – – well, let’s call it the non-cream. I subtly indicated that I was older and wiser.

Now compare that with a now-famous “corporate-y” words from Domino’s CEO David Brandon about their pizza.

The weakness in our value chain with the customer was really in our core product.

Translated from corporate lingo into plain speak, it just means –

we delivered on time but our pizza sucked

I have heard the same advice from many others, on speaking clearly and directly. 37signals, for example, talks about the “weasel words and the absurdity of corporate speak“.

If you are interested in following up on this idea of simple effective communication with your customers, a must read for you is  William Zinsser’s famous book titled “On Writing Well”. The book has been selling well for over 30 years. It’s filled with great advice on how to write clearly, in a stripped-down, simple manner, and is filled with ideas that you can adopt easily into your daily conversation with your customers and every one else.

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