A Disappointing Pitch

Today was by far my most frustrating day of class thus far; I have certainly learned a lot from it, but it was definitely a disappointing way to begin the innovation blitz.

Going into our pitches, I knew that my idea was good, but I also knew that it was not the best. As such, it was apparent to me that I needed to compensate for my idea’s failings with salesmanship in the form of my pitch. Ideas in and of themselves are often not nearly as important as the person presenting those ideas; unfortunately, I did a horrendous job of marketing my idea to my classmates. While I thoroughly introduced the problem, my explanations of market analysis and solutions seemed vague. As a result, my audience came away with the only following: gyms need to be cheaper and less intimidating for consumers. They did not come away understanding the competitive advantages my proposed gym would have over its direct competition and substitutes, they did not understand the exact methods through which I would fix pricing, and they did not understand exactly how I was aiming to create a more diverse gym community. On the plus side, today forced me to acknowledge that preparation is key to my success. I had a good idea that solved a legitimate problem and had real market analysis to back up my solution, but I did not successfully convey two thirds of that equation to my audience because I chose to speak off of the cuff.

On the other hand, many of my classmates did a phenomenal job of presenting their products; Jess in particular made me believe that her proposed product would be extremely successful which is why I chose to work with her for the upcoming pitch this Friday. She exuded confidence, she had a unique idea, and she easily conveyed the benefits of her idea, Stageshare, to us; frankly, her pitch was closer to Blake’s than mine was to her’s in terms of quality and overall effectiveness. Ironically, I expected the pitch to go the exact opposite way because I had seen the amount of notes she had in Google Slides, and as I said, I prefer to go off of the cuff; once again, I clearly need to adapt my methods and force myself to do some level of preparation.

Today was a learning experience, and while I am very frustrated with my performance, I would be disappointed if this class stopped offering me new challenges. I will continue to process my failings, look for ways to improve, and move on with life.