How to Get to the World Championships of Public Speaking with John Andrews

The road to the World Championships of Public Speaking is riddled with obstacles. In fact almost 300,000 speakers from across the world come together every year desperately yearning to stand on stage as the worlds best speaker. My guest today was one of the .0003% of speakers who’ll ever cross the world stage and fortunately for us, he’s here to share how we can too.

John Andrews Headshot.jpeg

In 2017, John Andrews became just the 11th person in the history of District 60 to compete in the final round of the World Championships. Recognized by Toastmasters from around the world, he’s currently finishing up his World Class Speech Coaching Certification so that he can share his insight with the world. If you’re not contest ready, John’s tips will surely help bridge that gap.

(If you’d prefer these tips in video, click this link)

World Class Speech Preparation

As you can imagine, no serious competitor writes a world class speech overnight. John believes that most world championship speeches will take a minimum of 3-4 weeks to write. In our interview John said, “Speech prep starts the day the last competition ends.”

Therefore, if you haven’t already started to prepare for the 2019 International Speech competition, you’re behind! You mind be thinking, “that’s crazy” or “that’s unrealistic” and to that, John would say you’re right. Unless, you want to be the best. As a speaker who’s gleaned a lot of insight from past World Champions like Darren LaCroix and Craig Valentine, John and other serious competitors hold themselves to a higher standard.

John recalled a lesson he learned early in his speaking journey from Darren, “When Darren first started speaking, he joined 4 Toastmasters club. In the early days he would drive 2 hours both ways to do a 10 minute stand up comedy performance. He was obsessed with stage time.”

So when I asked John for his best advice for ambitious speakers who want to be world class, he said that nothing beats stage time. Nothing beats a commitment to excellence. Nothing beats hard work. In addition, he reminds us that regardless of the goal, there will always be someone who wants it a little more than we do. Someone willing to put in more hours, study harder and grind longer.

If you have talent, good for you. But talents not enough in this game. Like my good friend Kevin Rempel always says,

“Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”

John also recommended a few rapid fire tips to help set you up for success in the next competition season:

  1. Record your speech on video. Video doesn’t lie. All of the nuances and subtleties that are missed during feedback from friends and fellow Toastmasters will be captured on video. Ensure your improvement process is systematic and objective. Take the time to review the video and look for where your body language distracts from your message. For where you could add more humour or where you can make the slightest improvements in delivery, structure or content. Check out my video about videotaping yourself here.
  2. Follow the speech objectives. Many Toastmasters in John’s opinion are moving from speech to speech and manual to manual for external validation. Not for the sake of learning and their personal development. If you want to be world class like John, you’ll need to upgrade your skills. How do you do that? Follow closely the curriculum Toastmasters has laid out for us! The projects have tips, objectives, and a systematic approach to our improvement as communicators and leaders. The next speech you give, follow the manual to the letter, you’ll be surprised how much more you grow.
  3. Have a strong message. If there was only one piece of advice John could give to speakers it would be this one. John believes that having a strong message is the most important factor in your public speaking success. All of the work we do at Toastmasters to develop your skills in delivery, content and structure are only to back up and support your message. They are not the show, the message is the show. Focus all of your time and efforts into coming up with a message that is powerful and can change the world. If you have a weak message, it’s likely no level of speaking competence can bring you back from the grave you’ve just personally dug.

Lessons From Death

I, like the Stoics, are strong believers that death should be seen as motivation. Death is not something to be avoided or fought, but embraced. And in doing so it’s actually a formula for great insights, breakthroughs and wisdom. John Andrews, is no different. After years of being a Licensed Funeral Director, he’s seen it all.

“There were days,” John recalled, “where I’d wake up in the morning and think to myself, ‘I wish my apartment was bigger or I wish the ceilings were higher (ditto brother) or I wish the appliances were nicer,’ and then after a long day at work I’d come home and be so grateful for everything I had in my life. Not having to bury my child or my parents that day was enough for me to realize how beautiful my life was and how much I really have.”

Remembering that we are mortal, that any given day could be our last, or our parents last, or our best friends last, should be motivation enough to squeeze every last drop out of this existence we call life. Whether we’re a stay at home mom, a new Toastmaster with the dream of going to the World Championships or a student studying in University, our days are numbered. Tomorrows, never guaranteed.

My best friend and roommate Iain, is a constant reminder to me of this truth. And although it sounds morbid or pessimistic, I hope you can learn from John’s lessons from death and put your best foot forward every day. To get obsessed about your goals, to love and appreciate your family like you never have and to be true to yourself in this short life.

I know I will.

John’s Do This Directives.

  1. Get a coach. John’s had countless coaches throughout his life and many of the tips above are enough to support new speakers, those that want to go pro need a coach. Wether you want to see your blind spots, challenge yourself beyond what you thought possible or help fast forward your trajectory to success, a coach is indispensable.
  2. Don’t force your contest prep. Give yourself enough time! As we mentioned before, world class speeches aren’t written overnight. Don’t force your prep and ensure that you’re giving yourself 3-4 weeks to fully develop your contest speech.
  3. Get around humour. Wether you start hanging out with funny people, start consuming more stand up comedy or watch funny sitcoms on TV, getting around humour will dramatically increase your chances of success in Toastmasters competition. “Humour,” John says, “breaks down any barriers there are between you and your audience.” And if you want your message to resonate, if you want to ensure you’re making an impact on people’s lives and leaving them with insight to think about, you’ll need a way to their hearts. You can do that with humour. Be cautious about entering your next competition without humour, it’ll leave you at a great disadvantage.

Audio Time Stamps.

  • 00 who is John Andrews
  • 1:30 John’s 2017 championship speak
  • 2:45 road to Vancouver World Championships
  • 8:40 going from a beginner to a pro
  • 11:00 pro to world class
  • 13:30 speech prep for the next year
  • 15:00 how to prep a world class speech
  • 16:45 comedy and breaking down barriers
  • 19:25 lessons from death
  • 22:25 parable of the talents

Till next time stay on the offensive. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And remember what Jim Rohn said, “you cannot change the destination of your life overnight but you can change the direction.”

Jonathan Andrews

Out.

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Asking Better Questions and Improving Communications Through Podcasting

Stefan Headshot

Stefan Spinoff is one of what is becoming a virtually endangered species. Someone who’s pursuing a career in the same field of his formal education. After graduating from Journalism school, Stefan embarked on a journey to change the way millennials are labeled through his Podcast, “The Restless Millennial“.

Throughout our discussing we were able to uncover some deeply person truths rarely shared amongst even his closest friends, the benefits of networking and

using LinkedIn as a platform to both share content and meet like minded people and finally the spiritual destruction of comparing yourself to others.

(If you’d prefer these tips in video format, click this link)

Mission

It’s my personal hope that each and everyone of us are driven by a burning desire to fulfill their own personal mission. And when I see it manifest in the lives of those around me, it’s clear gravitational pull, it’s impact on individuals work ethic, their demeanour, and most importantly actions, it’s a thing of beauty.

Stefan Spinoff is one of those men. “The Restless Millennial,” he shares, “is an attempt to change the narrative around millennials and give young entrepreneurs the platform to add value to others.”

Our youth have ideas, wisdom and often a contemporary outlook of ways to improve our world. It’s Stefan’s belief that by shifting the label from lazy and entitled to competent and valuable contributors, we’ll begin to see significant progress and hopefully moment towards the future development of youth leadership.

It’s an admirable mission and one that I’m grateful to have been able to work towards and contribute to throughout our conversation together.

Lessons From Great Youth

As a byproduct of running his Podcast, Stefan has had the opportunity to meet and learn from a plethora of successful and ambition Millennials. One in particular is someone I’ve seen develop a considerable following on multiple social platforms, Manu Goswami.

Manu’s a Top 20 Under 20, CEO of Trufan and 2x Tedx Speaker. After amassing a following of 50+ thousand professionals on Linkedin, Manu was able to glean some wisdom that Stefan’s taken advantage of to this day. Many shared that if you jump in and begin creating and curating content on LinkedIn today, you’d still be considered an early adopter. The platform hasn’t reached saturation, there’s room for youth and adults alike to build a strong professional brand.

As businesspeople, influencers and future world movers and shakers, attention is currency and according to Manu it’s not too late to take your fair share of the pie on LinkedIn. With over 250 million active users… I’d be happy to take a small crumble of the left over slices falling off the side of the table!

Today, as a result of the show, Stefan’s taken strides to increase the volume and quality of his posts on LinkedIn and he’s seen immediate results.

“I can already see the exact same posts I put on LinkedIn getting more traction and views than the ones that I post on Instagram.”

You don’t need to tell me twice. If we’re going to take our professional brand seriously, there’s no time like the present to aggressively leverage LinkedIn to build our brands.

Fun Facts About Stefan

Stefan admitted to being a huge Michael Jackson fan back in High School. So much so that he would video tape himself learning the moves and post them on Youtube. The name of that channel is still unknown, but what we do know is that you can see an extremely revealing (and impressive) 30 second clip of Stefan dancing here (skip to 18:30).

The Death of Joy

As a parting thought from our time together, Stefan offered the idea he’s been pondering over the past few weeks,

“Comparison is the thief of joy.”

I personally returned the thought with an axiom I frequently revisit,

“Don’t compare your chapter 1 to someone else’s chapter 7.”

Stefan reminds us that while there are so many opportunities today because of social media, it can be equally as destructive, if we allow it. As Jim Rohn says, we need to stand guard at the doors of our minds.  If we don’t we’ll allow the lifestyles, possessions, and perceived happiness of others to plant seeds of fear, doubt and uncertainty of our own unique paths.

We’re quick to wish we could do more or have more, even if those things aren’t actual priorities for us. Stefan is working on and challenges us to stop comparing ourselves to others, especially from what you see on social media. To seek our own truths, to work hard on what makes us passionate, and attack each day, one step at a time.

Stefan’s Do This Directives

  1. Raise your LinkedIn game – It can be extremely challenging to break out on matured and saturated social media platforms. Yes, our content needs to be high quality. Yes, our ideas and positions need to be provocative and thought provoking. We won’t argue that. But if we’re going to be posting anyways, let’s up our game by using a platform that still has significant room for us to grow a strong and loyal following. See you on LinkedIn!
  2. Focus on your own path – We all have goals, desires and ambitions unique to us. However, we’re so easily intoxicated by the sizzle of others lifestyles. Hold your ground, don’t compare yourself to people’s possessions and lives. Can you use it as fuel to create a better life? Yes. But ensure you’re standing guard at your mind and not allowing comparison to steal your joy.
  3. Listen to the Restless Millennial. Now available on Spotify, you can find Stefan’s Podcast with Manu Goswami here.

Audio Show Timeline

  • 00:00 intro who is Stefan Spinoff
  • 1:30 what is the Restless Millennial
  • 4:30 favourite guests
  • 9:00 how to ask better questions
  • 10:30 taking advantage of journalism background
  • 14:30 challenges of doing the podcast
  • 16:00 things people don’t know about Stefan
  • 19 who is Stefan grateful for
  • 21 Stefans process for self improvement
  • 23:20 don’t compare yourself to others

Till next time stay on the offence. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And don’t forget what Jim Rohn said, “you can’t change the destination of your life overnight but you can change the direction.” 

Jonathan Andrews

Out.

Selling from the stage with Ronnie Fisher

Ronnie Fisher is a real estate investor, success coach, a motivational speaker and the host of momondays Niagara. He’s been featured on several TV shows, radio and podcast interviews and we were lucky to block off some time to have him on the show! Having taught english overseas he’s developed a passion for education that’s translated into personal development and real estate investment seminars.

Ronnie Fisher HeadshotHis purpose in life is to educate, inspire, motivate and encourage others to discover their passions, dreams and design a blue print to achieve their life goals.

Right off the bat we spent time talking about adequately preparing for your next high stakes performance!

 

(If you prefer these tips in video, check out our interview here.)

Preparing to for the stage

As Ronnie put it,

“Context is king.”

As speakers it’s our responsibility to know our audience, the venue and the expectations from the organizers. In an informal setting such as momondays he often finds himself speaking off the cuff and delivering whatever his heart speaks to him in the moment. He often has the luxury of introducing friends and the environment they’ve developed is that of authenticity and raw storytelling. Therefore it’s only fit that his performance follow suit and matches the context of the setting.

On the other hand, in a professional context such as a business meeting, pitch or weekend long real estate investment seminar, going with your heart simply won’t cut it. According to Ronnie, Disciplined and rigorous preparation of our material will help you:

  • Know where you are in your presentation how long you have left
  • Deliver the highest quality content for your audience
  • Create consistent, measurable and therefore improvable results

Any of those outcomes separately is enough to justify hours of preparation before your next big presentation. The aggregate makes it non-negotiable.

Sell the feeling

Selling from the stage can often be high pressure for the speakers. You’re being counted on to deliver and the lack of results can be devastating for the event organizers and the business as a unit. Fortunately for us, Ronnie was willing to share his battle tested strategies to maximize your potential to sell.

Ronnie painted the picture for us of a brand new shiny red corvette. Why would someone buy a luxury vehicle like that? Cars simply get you A to B and a $30,000 cheaper car would do the exact same job. With that philosophy it’s virtually never a logical decision. The answer is that people aren’t buying the corvette. They’re buying the way owning, driving and sitting in the car makes them feel.

red corvette

And that’s exactly what Ronnie recommends for those selling from stage. It’s critical we tap into the reasons why people would benefit from our product or service at an emotional level. Will it help them get out of debt? And if so, what would that make them feel? Would it help them send their kids to college? And if it did, what would be the impact of their children and their children’s, children.

By focusing on the feeling, and the why, we’re able to tap into the part of humans that make decisions and take action. He further reinforces the idea by reminded us to tell deeply personal stories that will resonate with the audience.

For example, by opening ourselves up to where we were, where we are today as a result of taking actions or using xyzzy product or services, and where we will be in the future by consistent action and following a system, others can see themselves in our shoes. If someone says, “aha!” I’m just like Ronnie and would love to get to where he’s at, they’re much more likely to commit than if you didn’t tell stories or if their internal dialogue is, “Ronnie just doesn’t get me.”

Book recommendation

One book in the last 5 years has made a lasting impact on Ronnie’s life and that was Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. I’ve personally read it multiple times and I know that many of the individuals I look up to (Ronnie included) encourage people in their lives to allow the book to support them in finding success. Napoleon Hill lays out a blueprint for us to accomplish our goals and if you work the plan, it works.

Today, Ronnie continues to be inspired by the work and has developed a personal mission statement based off it’s principles.

Mission statement

His purpose in life is to educate, inspire, motivate and encourage others to discover their passions, dreams and design a blue print to achieve their life goals.

Ronnie’s Do This Directives:

  1. Focus your preparation energies based on context. Ask yourself the questions, who’s in my audience, why are they here, how can I deliver the most value? Prepare accordingly.
  2. Think deeply about how you can resonate on an emotional level with your audience and prospects. Can they see themselves in your shoes? If not, remember that people buy from those that they like and trust. Start working immediately at weaving stories and a human element into your pitches.
  3. Invest in yourself and pick up Think and Grow Rich. Your future self and family will be immeasurably grateful you did.

Audio Show Timestamps

1:45 – how to resonate with the audience at momondays

4:45 – informal presentations

7:00 – formal presentations

8:30 – stay on time

12:00 – selling from stage

14:20 – people buy emotionally

16:45 – whats holding people back

20 – how to manifest your dreams

Till next time stay on the offensive. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And remember what Jim Rohn said, “you cannot change the destination of your life overnight but you can change the direction.”

Jonathan Andrews

Out. 

How to win speaker slam with Dan Shaikh

Dan Shaikh is the Co-Founder of Speaker Slam – Canada’s Premier Inspirational Speaking Competition with over 200 attendees monthly and attracting a stellar lineup of speakers and professional judges. He is a Event Producer, Video Creator and a Process Specialist.

Dan Shaik HeadshotDan is also the Founder of Speaker Slam Video Productions empowering speakers to reach a bigger audience through video. His greatest passion and life’s mission is living and creating peak experiences for others.

We met now almost 2 years ago. In September of 2016 Dan was the President of the best Toastmasters group in the city, CSI Pitchmasters. I fell in love with the club and we’ve been great friends ever since.

In our interview together Dan speaks to:

  • How to win speaker slam
  • What to avoid on stage
  • How to crush it in front of and behind the camera
  • How event organizers actually choose speakers

(If you prefer these tips in video check out our interview here)

Win Speaker Slam in 3 steps

After over a year of competition and dozens of events Dan has seen speakers that have crushed the stage… And the occasional speaker thats flopped. He expressed that it’s key a speaker comes with at least 2 of the following three traits,

“Our top 4 always have these 3 things in common. They demonstrate genuine vulnerability, they make our audiences laugh or they show up with poise. The confidence, charisma, and x-factor that’s intoxicated to watch and we can’t take our eyes off them.”

On the flip side, here’s Dan major tips to avoid.

How to lose Speaker Slam

The most common speaker pitfall is that of the conversationalist. They show up without having prepared, not wanting to be too scripted and as a result their message doesn’t land or they choke. Consistently, the top 4 speakers and ultimately the winners are the most prepared and take their time on stage seriously.

The way I see it is that there’s no greater level of narcissism than believing you can walk up on stage after 9 prepared speakers and believe you’re so good that you didn’t need to prepare. Repetition is the mother of learning and it’s no exception here at Speaker Slam.

How to look good for an event planner

Not only is Dan onstage as a host of Speaker Slam, he also organizes the speakers, the venue and the event as a whole. As a result he’s witnesses hundreds of applications to compete and has developed a sharp eye to what stands out for event planners.

Dan said,

“Your branding starts with your profile picture. It speaks volumes about how invested you are in your career. You could easily look at all of the profiles of past speakers and point out the top 3-4 from each event based on their pictures. Those speakers are serious and make a big impression on event organizers.”

From there a logical progression is to develop your brand hosticially. Dan recommends thinking deeply about your presence on the main social platforms like Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn and Youtube. Do you have video content? Are you writting? How are you staying relevant? If you fit the bill on these criteria you’ll be in an event planners good books.

Video Editing 101

Dan expressed to me that video is more important today than ever before (hence the video podcast). As a result, if you want your career as a speaker to grow, you need to be capturing yourself on video.

“If an event venue has 50 people in attendance and you crush it… You reached 50 people. If you crushed it AND captured it on video, than you have the potential to reach 5000 people by leveraging social media.”, Dan said.

I agree, don’t limit yourself to the confines of physical attendees. In addition, no meeting planner will ever take the risk on your as a paid speaker if they can’t see a quality speaker reel prior to the event.

Here is Dan’s top three tips to experiment with:

  1. Make the first 3 seconds as memorable as possible
  2. Invest in quality lower thirds
  3. Ensure your have either multiple angles, b roll, or jump cuts to keep your audiences attention
  4. BONUS* test subtitles as they can stop those scrolling mindlessly through Facebook in their tracks

How to kill it in front of the camera

The gave of video is simply a question of energy. If you’re a 5 in person, you need to 10x your energy on camera. It’s challenging to properly capture energy on video and so a 10 looks like an 8 and if you’re a 5 you look like a 1. Dan’s suggestion is to be more animated, speak louder and to show up with more energy than you would ever consider necessary.

If you want great examples of this check out Gary Vaynerchuk or Logan Paul.

Dan’s Do This Directives:

  1. If you want to dramatically improve your stage presence and fill in your current gaps than film yourself and review the content. I dive deeper into the need to film yourself for continuous improvement in this video (skip to 3:50 for the tip).
  2. Get a professional headshot… Yesterday! Take the first step towards your professional branding with a quality headshot. Then consider the way you’re showing up on social.
  3. Come/ Compete at Speaker Slam! You can find out more about the event and buy tickets here.

Show notes for the audio Podcast:

2:00 Me expressing my gratitude for Dan and his business partner Rina.

4:00 What is Speaker Slam?

5:30 How Speaker Slam started.

9:15 Tribute to Maria Rocellis.

10:30 How to work with a business partner.

12:31 How to make it into the top 4 at Speaker Slam.

15:30 What to avoid at Speaker Slam.

17:40 How to look good for event planners.

21:00 What do event planers want from speakers.

22:30 Why we need to create videos.

24:40 How to get more engagement on posts.

26:30 How to crush it editing videos.

32:00 The one thing you should be doing today.

Till next time, stay of the offensive. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And remember what Jim Rohn said, “you cannot change the destination of your life overnight but you can change the direction”

Jonathan Andrews

Out.

 

The Science of Persuasion and Logos – IWTYTS

We’ve made it!

Aristotle laid out three pillars to persuasion and our final to discover together is Logos. In an emotional and highly irrational world, do we still need to use logic in debate and rhetoric?

More than ever before.

Logos translates in greek to logic and helps your audience make sense of what you’re saying.

You want to make sure that everything you say has an understandable, logical, and has a real message. The supporting arguments should be clear and flow nicely into the main points. To develop this element, key questions to ask yourself are:

1. Does this message make sense?
2. Is the message based on facts, statistics, and evidence?
3. Will the call to action actually lead to an outcome the audience wants? Will it solve the problem that’s been presented?

With high logos you are less likely to have the audience turn to the person next to them or walk away saying “what the heck were they talking about?”

I highly encourage you to focus on structure in your presentations to develop logos. I cringe when I see speakers who have a lot of great information but it’s not organized. Who tell fantastic stories, but they’re irrelevant to the main theme and therefore do not persuade.

Let’s all just keep it simple. There are only a few main structures to presentations:

  1. Intro, body, conclusion
  2. The three act structure – same style, different name, where you have the context, climax and conclusion
  3. Tell them structure – Tell what you’re going to tell them, tell them, tell them what you told them

If you focus on structure and than back up that structure with messages based on fact and evidence that support your arguments, you will successfully inject logos into your rhetoric.

Now as I hope you’re aware of from our precious posts,

Aristotle intended us to use a combination of these three forces, ethos, pathos and logos rather than keeping them mutually exclusive.

Aristotle ethos pathos logos

These pillars intertwined create the greatest chance for influence. They are supportive, and complimentary, not independent. It reminds me of when I started my first business at 18. Our trainers would often coach that there are multiple kinds of people, sharks, whales, dolphins and sea urchins, and our responsibility as presenters pitching our ideas would be to appeal to them all. The same is true here.

In each audience there will be people who just aren’t persuaded by what school you went to or what clothes you wear. There will be people who make decision solely on their gut, on emotion, and if you’re unable to appeal to that person, you will not influence them. And finally, there will be analytical people in your audiences. Are you giving them the stats and evidence and logic they need to make an informed decision, because if you aren’t it’s highly likely you’re missing out on business or changed lives.

Ultimately , my hope and vision for you is to allow these concepts of persuasion, ethos, pathos and logos to sink deep into your subconscious. For you to take them with you for the rest of your career so that when someone needs a sale made, they can call you, a relationship built, they know who to ask, or someone to change the world, you are the one on stage delivering that message.

Till next time stay on the offensive. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And remember what Jim Rohn said, “you cannot change the destination of your life overnight but you can change the direction.”

Jonathan Andrews

Out.

The Science of Persuasion and Pathos – IWTYTS

I’m excited now to uncover with you Aristotle’s second pillar of persuasion. His concepts can be seen throughout histories most influential orators. On demand they would allow their audiences to feel specific emotions at very specific times.

With pathos, you can too.

It’s not enough for a speaker to simply rely on Ethos or credibility because there will come a time when either you will not be a credible source on a topic or your audience isn’t that impressed or persuaded by ethos. You’ll need to dig deeper into your tool belt as an influencer and remember how essential emotion plays in your ability to persuade.

While ethos translated into credibility, pathos means experience.

The job of the speaker is to create an experience for the audience by appealing to the emotions that exist within them. By drawing out these emotions the speaker keeps the audience feeling engaged and interested. It’s important to recognize that emotion doesn’t need to only mean sadness, anger and fear but should also include joy, excitement, and a myriad of other feelings.

It’s our responsibility as communicators to choose which emotions are appropriate at any given time, and learn how to evoke these emotions. Typically, the best way to give the audience a memorable experience is to evoke contrasting emotions throughout the speech, almost like a smooth roller coaster of ups and downs.

Rollercoaster image

With high pathos, your audience is more likely to feel connected to you, trust you, be persuaded by your message, and follow through with your calls to action.

Let’s talk the how:

Stories

This includes personal stories as well as simple anecdotes or even stories of others. For example, if I’m talking about mental health awareness I could say something like, “asking for help for the first time can be hard – I remember sitting down with my dad with a scar I cut into my own arm nervous and unsure about what I was going to say…”

Painting the picture of sitting down with my dad with the scar on my arm, feeling nervous and uncertainty, draws your audience into your memory. This is often the quickest way to establish emotional connection with the audience and is likely going to be one of the most memorable moments of the presentation.

Pro Tip – Lead by example. Mirror the emotions you would like your audience to feel. Believe it or not – it works! If you are describing a wonderful moment, for example, amplify and show the joy in your face, voice, and posture. On a subconscious level the audience will see the way you are speaking and use that as a cue for the emotions they should experience.

So avoid the mistake of 90% of speakers who tell as sad story with a smile on their face or share their vision with a monotone voice. Ensure that your non-verbal communication reflects the emotions you want your audience to experience, it will magnify the impact.

Analogies and Metaphors

These comparisons allow you to build on the understanding and emotions an audience already feels for something. For example if you speak about gang violence, you might

Screen Shot 2018-05-14 at 5.40.52 PM.png
Iain Gabriel in Action

plainly state that, “We have a problem in our city…” On the other hand, you might say, “we have a cancer in our city…” The latter analogy draws on your audience’s pre-existing feelings about cancer, and makes them want to move or take action towards a solution.

I’ll bring my good friend Iain Gabriel onto a future video for you to learn first hand from a masters of taking advantage of metaphors and analogies.

Humour

Humour typically involves story telling and often allows the audience to connect to you on more of a friendship level. The audience laughing and having a good time also allows them to stay attentive and engaged with the content.

Disconnected audience are not easily persuaded.

Do This.

As you go out and try tell better stories, use more vivid language and analogies, make your audiences laugh and lead by example. As a final tip, Aristotle intended for us to associating positive emotions with our main calls to action (whatever your cause or takeaway) and more negative emotions surrounding the issues we seek to address.

You, like histories most influential orators, are now armed to go on stage and into your everyday life to use pathos, to use emotion to elicit your desired response in every interaction. Whether that be action towards your cause, buying your product or just simply living a better life.

My question to you is, what are you going to do with it?

Till next time stay on the offensive. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And remember what Jim Rohn said, “You cannot change the destination of your life overnight but you can change the direction.”

Jonathan Andrews

Out.

LLL v3 – Don’t hold back your people

I fundamentally misunderstood the purpose of leadership as President of CSI Pitchmasters.

I thought club membership growth was a measuring stick of my leadership.

I thought successful events was an indicator of my influence.

I thought being called, “the best president we’ve ever had,” meant I was doing everything right.

I was certainly and without a doubt wrong. The truth is I failed as a leader.

Not because anyone said so, as you can see from above I’ve been praised over and over again for my dedication to our members, for representing our club professionally, and for ensuring that we meet our club key performance indicators, I say I failed because I know it in my heart of hearts that anyone could have done what I did this past year.

Dissapointed in mirror

It’s relatable to being a peacetime general. In good times, when you’re growing, when the revenue curve is going skywards, you don’t really see leadership. In fact, it’s not really that important. Everything’s working with or without great leadership. When you need leadership is when things go wrong. It’s when the curve flattens, you’re losing members/ employees, the economy tanks.

But my lousy leadership wasn’t that I didn’t make more problems that I could stand up heroically and solve. My biggest mistake is that i didn’t take advantage of the most important function of a leader during peace times. Developing other leaders.

The leaders most important task is to take good people and make leaders out of them.

You see, in any organization whether that be a non-profit like CSI Pitchmasters, your own business, or even your families and communities, people are the only assets that can continually appreciate. Systems become outdated, buildings deteriorate, machines wear down, but people can grow, develop and become more productive and effective if they have a good leader who understands their value.

Over the past 12 months I’ve been surrounded by 5 incredible board executives and over a dozen members all of which I’m extremely fond and proud of. Saying that I haven’t seen tremendous growth in them right before my eyes would be a lie. But their incredible growth is a by-product of an environment we’ve created, nothing to do with my personal leadership. In fact, it’s so clear to me now that on many occasions I was standing directly in the way of their growth. Here’s why: I didn’t give my team the space to fail and win and because I was insecure.

I took on jobs that should have clearly been delegated. And tasks that would have been huge confidence boosters for members, ended up on my plate because I didn’t set proper expectations and encourage members to take them on with pride and enthusiasm. When I look back, most of the talk about being an awesome president was because I took on so much work, personally.

We all had it twisted.

The best leaders would have inspired, delegated, and encouraged its members to take on the work and grow personally. They would have consistently modeled the behaviour they wanted to see,  mentored the team to acquire new skills, recognized their personal accomplishments and established the right support systems incase there were challenges.

That is the role of the leader!

Not taking on all the work, but ensuring the team grows in the pursuit of accomplishing lofty projects. If you’ve experienced this problem as well or want to be wise and avoid these mistakes as a leader completely, follow these two principles.

It’s in a leaders best interest to let your team win or lose

Understanding your teams abilities will multiply your effectiveness. The first step to great leadership is to surround yourself with people of great potential. That wasn’t my problem. My problem was that I didn’t know how to properly delegate responsibilities and tasks. Instead of recognizing my teams strengths and capabilities, I did everything myself. When I should have been confident in my team and motivated them to take on projects, I stepped in and stunted their growth potential.

team sleeping GIF by gamingWhat I’ve learned is that it’s important to give your team opportunities to show you and themselves that they are capable. Fostering leadership is about putting people in a position to become leaders themselves. And to do that without micromanaging. I didn’t clue into the fact that it was actually in my best interest all along to let them win or even fail because then you both know moving forward whether or not they’re suited for that task. Once you know what your team is and isn’t capable of you can delegate appropriately and multiply effectiveness.

Great leaders are not threatened by people with great potential

Gary Vaynerchuk has an excellent analogy where he says that as an entrepreneur building a company he wants to build the biggest building in town. And he wants to do that by building the biggest building in town… Unlike how most other business people do it by tearing down other people’s building.

Gary v biggest building

When it comes to my relationships with people I’ve definitely never purposefully tried to build a bigger building by tearing down anyone’s building, but I sure have been threatened by others buildings. I’m being very transparent for the sake of drilling deep into my own personal psychology when I say that I do avoid giving others opportunities, or share their work when I love it, or hold on to my own personal learning because I’ve convinced myself that if I do, they will build a bigger building than me.

Joze Piranian bumped me out of the Speaker Slam Grand Slam first place spot by .5 in November of 2017 and I still haven’t shared his incredible speech on Facebook (until now). I don’t share valuable insights that I know could help my roommate, Iain, because he’s already so damn smart and it exposes my insecurities. Finally, I don’t pass along all of the best practices in selling I’ve learned with specific members of my team at work because with it I know they’d outsell me.

Why? Because I’m not secure as a leader.

It’s an unproductive, disempowering, and candidly a pathetic place to come from as a leader. Fortunately I recognized the need for change.

Great leaders, the type of leader I want to become, are not threatened by people of great potential.

Great leaders want to lift them up and help them soar higher. I’ve learned that in order to be a great developer of people you need to be personally secure, because taking people to the height of their potential may mean they will pass you by…

And that’s okay. Our job as a leader isn’t to look good or to be at the top of some hierarchy. It’s to work hard and model the behaviour we want to see in our people. It’s to mentor and coach potential leaders to achieve big goals, goals bigger than the individual.

It’s about developing other leaders.

This radically transparent reflection, while painful, is necessary. It’’s not only necessary for me to be completely honest with myself, but it’s also critical for you, if you also want to step into a leadership role, to see yourself in my example. To decide whether or not you’re truly developing people or if you’re holding them back because of micromanagement or insecurity.

Do this.

  1. Give your team the space and opportunity to win and lose. Taking on all the work may get you short term credit and pleasure, but it doesn’t lead to long term satisfaction, trust and results. I want to challenge you to give your teams more challenging tasks and coach and encourage them until they’ve stretched into the leader they have the potential to be.
  2. Seek ways to elevate your team higher than yourself. Just like you move beyond mentors and coaches when you’re ready, the same should be happening with your people. If you’re maximizing your responsibility as a leader they should surpass you in skill and ability as well. Give them the strength, encouragement and recognition they deserve. It will only make the world a better place.

Till next time stay on the offensive. Aggressively pursue a better version of yourself. And remember what Jim Rohn said, “you cannot change the destination of your life overnight. But you can change the direction.”

-J

Out.