Where It All Begins: Your Listeners

You can’t pass go, you can’t collect $200 (let alone $20,000 or $200,000 for your next initiative) if you haven’t gone through the first step:

That’s right. Rephrase your agenda to meet theirs, instead.

Since our goal is to influence others and to persuade them to take action, we can’t talk all about ourselves.

We must step back and ask ourselves some key questions about the audience. This is a critical first step in the process even – or especially – if you know your listener(s) well – for example, your team, your boss, or a key client. While you may have worked with them for years, and understand how they think about and approach a situation, that doesn’t mean that their same opinions, thoughts, and goals translate directly to another subject.

What should you say?

All depends on who’s listening.

 

The Straw that Broke the Camel’s Back

I’ve heard over 100 presentations on philanthropy and giving. I spend a lot of time recording people speaking on video. Luckily, many of us are motivated to give back, and we want to urge others to do the same. This is not a complaint – instead, there is a great … Continue reading

Decrease Your Disparity Gap

Who do you see when you look in the mirror? Is it the same person your boss, your family, your audience and everyone else sees? All of us, men and women, alike, can be our own harshest critics. That’s why Dove’s Real Beauty Sketches campaign immediately went viral (as did … Continue reading

Communicating Likability

In effective communicating, it’s not just important to be likable, but to exude likability. Proof? The Voice vs. American Idol. Are you an old time addict of American Idol as I was? I even blogged on how critical confidence was for success – probably my favorite Idol of all time … Continue reading

Sticky Statistics

Sometimes it feels like life has become a series of statistics. Thing A is the #1 cause of Disease B, only 56% of Demographic C believes in Opinion D, and so on. At some point, we become worn down by the numbers, and they lose their impact. So, what do … Continue reading

Listen Up: It’s Time for The Big Dance

Ever give instructions to a group and the voice in the back of your head says, “they’ll know what I mean”? Well, that doesn’t always work. Even when you’re working with the best people. It happened in our office just this week when we set up our Decker Team Tournament … Continue reading

Audience Analysis: Nonverbal Cues & Clues

You’re out to dinner with friends, and one of them is in the midst of telling a great story. She’s gesturing wildly, her intonation ebbing and flowing, her energy rising as the story builds. Just as she’s about to reveal the climax, here comes a waiter to cut her off … Continue reading