One of my newest friends just happens to be one of the best motivational speakers in the land.George Walther is a Certified Speaking Professional (as am I) and is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame (I’ll be there only in my dreams).
He has a ton of experience, is the author of a handful of business books which have sold who knows how many gazillion copies, and is generally a “big deal” in the professional speaking world.
I was just at a convention in Arizona for the National Speakers Association and spent some time hanging with George. What struck me is that in a room filled with plenty of ego (trust me…professional speakers are not short of this commodity) George is the guy that would win “Most Like My Neighbor.” In other words, in spite of his impressive accomplishments, he is totally down to earth, kind, easy to be with, and well — funny.
Iin every industry the most qualified people are also the very ones who are easiest to like. And the pompous, self-important jerks are more likely than not to be insecure snobs who often can’t back up their bluster with skill.
What’s my point?
If you want to act like a big deal, consider doing the opposite. Don’t tell us about your credits, your experience, and your prestigious clients. Just be yourself, and your professionalism will shine through way brighter than if you “act” the part of the pro.
[Hey George! I know you’ll read this: don’t let this go to your head. I happen to know you like Pabst Blue Ribbon, and with questionable taste like that you clearly have at least some things to learn. : ) ]
Motivational Speaker, Fan of George Walther, Fellow Drinker of Pabst
My most recent client was Craneware. Craneware is a:
…leading supplier of business intelligence and revenue cycle software that provides clients with chargemaster management software and products designed to optimize legitimate reimbursements and assist in managing the revenue cycle through better information, workflow, pricing strategy, capture of lost revenue and best practice modeling.
I barely know what this means, and this is after 3 conference calls, some study and spending a day with them. (Ok, so I’m teasing….they sell software solutions to hospitals and medical providers.)
Imagine this for a tough audience: A group that as been HAMMERED with content and powerpoint for two days. They know they will be working into the night — if you count the teamwork exercise and the company dinner. Then imagine that they know there is a speaker at 2 pm (nap time!) but they haven’t been told that the speaker will be fun, professional, or (gasp!) funny. All they know is that they have to show up.
Tough crowd. But seeing them start at a DEAD stop and then move forward until — at the end of the keynote — that room was buzzing with energy and laughter was worth the trip to Arizona. (Ok, the check was nice too.) But we had a great time in Phoenix, Arizona.
Thanks Craneware. If you’re looking for a motivational business speaker to pick up your troops at any time of the day…. even nap time…. I’d love to be your guy.