I’m here at the National Speakers Association National Convention Influence ’11 in Anaheim, California and there’s a theme that keeps coming up.
Larry Winget spoke about it brilliantly today; Glenna Salsbury and Lou Heckler spoke about it in their superb keynotes; the one-of-a-kind Randy Gage Convention Chair raised it today; Terri Sjodin addressed it in her fabulous keynote on sales and persuasive presentations; Sally Hogshead mentioned it in tonight’s panel as being a part of what makes someone fascinating; and last night, on a panel titled “NSA Tonight” Steve Rizzo, Tim Gard, Jeffrey Gitomer, Mike Rayburn and I each spoke about it. It’s come up again and again in the halls and on the speakers’ platform.
To be a great speaker, to be a memorable and unique speaker, you have to start by speaking your truth. And you have to deliver that truth in a style that is authentic to you.
Surprisingly, this is not as easy as it would seem. Presenters get distracted and sidetracked thinking about what they “should” be, how they “should” present…and often, sadly, by trying to become someone else, offering a watered down poor imitation of another speaker.
The fact is that for many, it’s hard to know what their true message is.
How does one discover it?
Years ago, someone gave me this exercise.
I’m not suggesting that it’s the only exercise or the best one, but it certainly does cut to the quick and to your core with surprising speed.
Here it is.
If you were on a desert island dying, and there was a young person there with you—someone you loved, someone you cared about deeply—and there was only one message you could give them, one piece of advice about the world and how to live……..
what would it be?
Now……. go start speaking about that.