The best speakers intuitively know this but they plan for it strategically by crafting stories that use their core message to move, serve and uplift an audience.
Having served 15 years as a tenured college professor in theater and teaching the art of powerful owning the stage, I've helped hundreds of people learn to avoid the top mistakes that prevent an audience from going on a journey with a performer. Many of the mistakes are very similar to the mistakes all great speakers learn to avoid.
What all great speakers know is that powerful speaking and teaching is a combination of:
- Proven case studies
- Sharing transformational lessons learned from real life examples
When you stand in front of an audience you want them to do 3 things:
- Be receptive to new information & opportunities for transformation
- Retain what you've said
- Reflect on what you've shared
All of the above will be more easily achieved when you use your message in the context of stories that serve and move an audience to take the kind of action that will benefit their life or business.
Now for the hard part. To share your core message in the context of story telling will require you to open yourself to others from the intimate space of vulnerability. Traditionally, the definition of vulnerability suggests that we should avoid it at all costs because its the territory of pain and naiveté.
For 20 years I've taught speakers and performers to embrace and use vulnerability as a powerful force in their presentations. To recognize that vulnerability is the space of reciprocal exchange and free flowing openness to give and receive. This energy is a natural part of sharing yourself in a heart to heart connection with your audience. This applies to the singer, actor and most certainly for speakers and trainers.
When you're willing to use vulnerability as a source of power your audience is more receptive and willing to hear and receive your message and the result is deeper rapport. Their ability to retain the information you share becomes emotionally sticky because they feel the truth and a willingness from the speaker to have a heart to heart connection. Lastly, the audience is prepared to go into the space where deep and lasting learning happens, in reflection.
If you've been reluctant to really open up to using your core message to create maximum impact you're doing your audience a tremendous disservice. Remember, your message is not about you. Its present to move and inspire the world.
How willing are you to strategically use vulnerability in your next speaking engagement? Share in the comments section below. #speakertrainer #ReinventioniSexy