Nov: Get to the root!

establish a connectionAfter seeing the 5th email cross my path this week about the next ‘greatest’ speaking tips from yet another contest winner or #1 book author, I felt compelled to share something to help all Emerging Speakers take their craft to the next level.  And it’s not another list of greatest speaking tips.

It’s simply this: Get to the root.

Root:  as in root cause, root driver, root commonality.

In my ‘olden’ days, I was a Certified 6 Sigma Master Black Belt, classically trained statistician and process improvement specialist….who’s sole purpose was to help people get to and identify the root cause of a problem and improve it.  I had to get to the core and understand it. Not just from intuition, but also from data, and human behavior. More things are random than you may think.

All of that training and experience came rushing back to me this week, when I continued reading yet another “here’s what you can do, to be the best, greatest speaker, like me”.  Do this, don’t do this. Another person telling me how to be like them.  Ugh. Yet, no one is looking at the commonalities, the basic truths:

1. lots of stars aligned for a person to have their 15 minutes:

the right audience, the right judges, the right antidote for the right pain at the right time, the right stories, the right partnerships

2. LOTS of practice, and, LOTS of mistakes that you never see

3. sharing just ‘enough’ personal information to establish connection

4. making points through stories. by default, we all grew up on stories, and we are all voyeurs.

5. being genuine, and being ‘present’

6. having a definitive energy level (whatever that is, melodramatic, high, offbeat, )

7. creating the opportunity to make people feel, think, experience

8. being in control of one’s own success, creating the right partnerships.

9. knowing one’s strengths and weaknesses and using that knowledge to connect or to get the right help

10. knowing what one wants and going after it.

It’s all about the ability to establish connection; knowing the audience enough, and knowing ourselves enough to get in front of  the right people, or knowing ourselves enough to mold to a variety.

There is no such thing as the perfect speaker.  The best speaker in the wrong crowd won’t create a great experience. When you know your audience, and perform / deliver to that group specifically, you can craft some major successes. Turn your pitch into an experience, a thought process, or something other than a ‘sell mindset’ where people are connecting with you and not simply your product, then you have something to work from.

Ever have a memory pop into your head from a simple smell that wafts by your nose, a song on the radio, a certain set of colors…? Memories are forged when there are at least 1 emotion and 1 sensory (sight, sound, taste, feel, smell) melding together to create a neuroconnection….it’s the same with you, your speech, and your audience, and having the knowledge on how to establish that bond.  Just because someone did something right, in front of the right audience, at the right time doesn’t mean it’s their humor you must adopt, or their type of stories, or even their techniques….look at what really aligned for that particular success.

Personality. Preparation. People. Persistence.

What is at the root for you to succeed?

To your Speaking Success,


Everything is connected in someway.


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