System engineering is all about abstractions and ideas. There is no tangible object, only requirements, solutions and tradeoffs. The major task of the system engineer is to distribute the information and convincing everybody that the information is correct and well balanced. Hence one of the major skills needed is marketing, internal and external.
The ideas get bought, and you are the target of the marketing and in time ideas get sold, and you are the marketer. Does the idea markets itself or you need to help it to spread? I’ve already touched the reasons for selling ideas but how to do it is a complete different issue.
I’ve found an invaluable source for being a marketer here: Seth Godin
Seth explains the basics in very clear and short posts:
What do you sell
- What is the story
- Why is it good for the receiver
- How to build a presentation
- How people decide
- Fail, so you can learn
Using the knowledge of how people work, of presenting it right and accumulating experience will definitely make the idea selling (and buying) a more successful experience.
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