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The Unselfish Way of Networking

The Unselfish Way of Networking

I must confess. I am not a fan of networking. I have been to events where business cards have been thrust upon me and elevator pitches regurgitated into my lap. I leave feeling empty and uninspired. I have met many people in my work as a public speaking coach and trainer who don’t enjoy networking. The events that I do enjoy are the ones where business cards remain firmly tucked away, and people are genuinely interested in others.

I feel drawn to connectors – these are the people you meet at networking events who are not seeking reciprocity or short term gain, they are eager listeners and they bring people together in an attempt to help others.

Be a Connector

I was reading an article written by Linda Murray about the Super Networker or the Connector, and it reminded me of the business opportunities that I have had this year as a result of the connectors in my life.

Malcolm Gladwell coined the term connector in his book The Tipping Point where he describes this person as ”one who knows many people”

The way I like to define a connector is: Someone who has a genuine desire to helps others by introducing them to people who can help them or be helped by them. I don’t think it is a numbers game, even if your network is relatively small you can aim to be a connector.

What makes a good connector

  • The ability to listen deeply
  • The skill of asking the right open ended questions
  • The willingness to help others without any expectations
  • A love of people and the ability to find the good in others

Six simple ways you can be a connector

Here’s how you can be unselfish at networking. Remember, that by attending networking events you will become a better speaker as it’s a great way to practise.

Attend networking and business events and listen more than you speak.

Be an active listener and aim to speak less. When you do speak, think of a question you can ask the other person that will help you find out more about them.

Use an empathic listening style. According to Otto Schamer and Katrin Kaufer in Leading from the Emerging Future empathic listening is when the listener is willing to see reality from the perspective of the other and sense the other’s circumstances.

When you leave the event, make a couple of notes about any particular person who stood out with a skill that you know others may benefit from, and make the effort to find out more with a follow up conversation.

Share information that you know others will enjoy

If you discover a great book, resource or article on a topic that you know will interest someone in your network send it to them in an email or message. Chances are if they enjoy it, they will reply which allows you to reconnect and they will pass it on to others. Can be as simple as ‘thought you might be interested in reading this’ – I really enjoy getting a short message with some new content to read. The best way to do this is to send others’ material not your own, as connectors avoid overt self-promotion. This is an efficetive way to carry on the networking conversation.

Be willing to share your expertise

If you are known for your willingness to offer tips and valuable advice to others you are more likely to be known as a connector. If you are a coach or consultant do you offer a complimentary session? are you open to a virtual or face to face coffee catch up to provide some tips to someone that a connector has sent your way?

Do a simple yet courteous email introduction

Introduce the two parties by way of a simple email, then leave it to them to do the rest. It is best to ask permission first to avoid any awkwardness.

I once had a lady write to me to suggest I needed a videographer (she took a dislike to my homemade video!) she copied in the videographer into the email. I then got a full quote in my inbox with the message – you wanted to know what my package rates are!! I didn’t and in fact, I had seen some of the videographers work and wasn’t that impressed. Meeting someone at a networking event is not permission to add to your mail list.

Stay in touch with your network

Keep in touch with your business connections so that you remain abreast of their area of expertise, and how they can help others in your network. If they are changing focus in their business or offering a new product or service, that may be a good time to consider what new connections you can facilitate.

Say Thank You

When someone gets in touch either directly or via an introduction as a result of a connector then remember to thank them. I’d like to thank all the wonderful connectors in my life and I look forward to attending more events where elevator pitches and business cards swaps are ditched in favour of deep listening, thoughtful questioning and serious thought about ‘who do I know who may be of interest or help to this person?’

Happy Networking!


About the author

Lisa Evans helps leaders and entrepreneurs to craft compelling business stories and become exceptional speakers. Lisa is a certified speaker coach, TEDx speaker coach, four times author, NLP practitioner, graphic recorder and visual storyteller, and improvisational actor. 

She has coached thousands of leaders across a range of industries, including resources, banking, finance, engineering, retail and sales as well as not-for-profit and community associations. 

If you wish to take advantage of a complimentary session in order to chat about how you can become an exceptional and successful speaker with a stand-out brand, then use this link to book a time to chat.

Here’s how I may help you

Whether you have a hidden story of your feet, or you want to nail your next presentation, I can help you.

My services include: 

Business Storytelling Coaching – together we can get started to create your suite of stories. A minimum of three sessions is recommended 1:1 in person or virtually via Zoom.

Executive Speaker Coaching – if you have an upcoming guest speaking opportunity, funding pitch, conference talk or you want to be an outstanding speaker, we can work together on your technique. You will see the results after one session.

Storytelling for Leaders Interactive Workshops – I can come to you, or we can host a workshop offsite for your team. From half-day to two-days immersive, this customised workshop is an ideal way to kick start your business storytelling strategy and get the whole team telling stories. 

Keynote/Guest Speaking at your next conference or event – I have several topics to choose from ranging from a 30-minute talk up to a 90-minute interactive session.

Storytelling is not ‘one size fits all’

Storytelling is not ‘one size fits all’

Adopting a narrative strategy will help you succeed in business storytelling. Different stories have different purposes and lead to different actions, so a one-size-fits-all approach to storytelling will not set you and your brand apart.

You know the importance of storytelling in business, and maybe you have created a story that encompasses parts of your business journey and values. That’s a great start, but there is more to do in order to stand out as a leader who is successful in business storytelling. 

You may think that you don’t have stories that are appropriate for sharing at work, or that others would not be interested in what you have to say.  When you discover how storytelling works and what makes a good story for a leader to share, you will never be stuck for material again. 

Why storytelling?

In addition to the essential soft skills that every leader needs today, the ability to tell the right story, at the right time and with the right audience, is also vital. It may come naturally to some, but if you are yet to find out how storytelling fits into your communication style, you’ll be pleased to know that it is a skill that you can learn quickly. The ability to engage, influence, inspire action and get noticed as a stand-out communicator, rests on your ability to balance data with emotion, and one of the most effective ways of doing this is through the power of storytelling. 

According to Stephen Denning, storytelling is more than an essential set of tools to get things done: it’s a way for leaders to embody the change they seek. Leaders establish credibility and authenticity through telling the stories that they are living. When they believe deeply in them, their stories resonate, generating creativity, interaction and transformation.

The pitfalls of storytelling

There’s more to telling a story than having compelling content. Telling a good story relies heavily on how you tell that story. As a speaker coach, I often hear stories read out loud from notes, memorised and delivered in a robotic monotone or from a static standing point behind a lectern. Words matter, but your message won’t land the way you hoped for if your delivery fails to connect with your audience.  

Some storytelling pitfalls to avoid: 

  • Rinsing and repeating the same story over and over 
  • Choosing the wrong story for the occasion or audience
  • Reading your story word for word 
  • Telling a story that’s meant for reading (writing to speak is different from writing for a reader)
  • Sharing an ego-centric story that is all about you

Creating a winning story every time

The good news is once you have a reusable storytelling formula, you can then create many different stories, meaning that you will have access to a suite of stories that both you and others in the organisation can share. When you use a practical story formula you can tweak, revise and revitalise your material stays relevant.  

Would like to book a complimentary session? I will share with you my five step storytelling framework so that you can get started on your story strategy.

Storytelling on purpose 

Before you start creating a narrative strategy for yourself and your organisation, there are ten questions to ask yourself and your team.

10 Questions to ask before you begin your business storytelling journey 

  1. Why tell stories? 
  2. What is the ultimate purpose?  
  3. What type of stories do we want to share? 
  4. How will we know the story is having an impact? 
  5. How many stories do we need?
  6. Who will we share our stories with?
  7. What medium will we use?
  8. Who is the best person in the organisation to share a particular story? 
  9. Who else in the organisation may share these stories?  Perhaps customers, leaders of all levels, sales team?
  10. How do we continue harvesting stories that are relatable, relevant and repeatable?

The suite of business stories every savvy leader can apply

There are different types of stories that make up an overall narrative strategy. Here are the six indispensable stories that sit well in any leaders communication toolkit. 

  1. The Core Story 
  2. The Founding Story
  3. The Client Journey
  4. The Aspiration Story
  5. The Values Story
  6. The Change Story 

Each story will serve a slightly different purpose and have a different narrative strategy. If it seems overwhelming, then the best place to start is with the Core Story also known as your signature story. This essential story includes the essence of you and helps others to connect on a slightly more personal level.

Why not get the whole team sharing stories?

When your suite of stories are fleshed out, there are multiple applications of storytelling in your leadership journey.

If you would like to host a facilitated business storytelling session for your leadership team then let’s chat.


Here’s how I may help you 

I am one of Australia’s leading executive speaker coaches, and my specialty is helping leaders to make an impact through the power of business storytelling.

To decide on the next step to level up your speaking and storytelling, let’s start with a brief chat.

My services include: 

Business Storytelling Coaching – together we can get started to create your suite of stories. A minimum of three sessions is recommended 1:1 in person or virtually via Zoom.

Executive Speaker Coaching – if you have an upcoming guest speaking opportunity, funding pitch, conference talk or you want to be an outstanding speaker, we can work together on your technique. You will see the results after one session.

Storytelling for Leaders Interactive Workshops – I can come to you, or we can host a workshop offsite for your team. From half-day to two-days immersive, this customised workshop is an ideal way to kick start your business storytelling strategy and get the whole team telling stories. 

Keynote/Guest Speaking at your next conference or event – I have several topics to choose from ranging from a 30-minute talk up to a 90-minute interactive session.

Changing Hearts and Minds. How to Speak Persuasively.

Changing Hearts and Minds. How to Speak Persuasively.

When we speak, we are selling our message, our unique insight, our brand, our ideas, and our service. If that service is intangible, it’s even more important to be able to speak persuasively, so that others are aware of the value that we offer. 

We are all in sales, whether directly or not. 

A presentation with a strong persuasive element can provide information to people in a way that inspires them to take action. 

The art of persuasion is a skill worth learning. The ancient Greeks believed that every person should study public speaking and the art of persuasion. 

According to Aristotle (c. 384 B.C. to 322 B.C.) an Ancient Greek philosopher and scientist, there are three forms of rhetoric used to influence people. 

Ethos, Pathos and Logos. 

To speak persuasively you need to understand and apply each of these three elements.

To speak like a leader and stand out with your presentation skills, consider the wisdom of Aristotle when you next speak.

Ethos

The Greek word ethos refers to ethical appeal; it’s how we convince an audience of our credibility, character and reputation.

In establishing your authority to speak early on in your talk, you can demonstrate expertise in your field. You can include this as part of your speaker introduction or by reference to a particular piece of research or work in the area. A well-crafted introduction and opening that has a balance of establishing credibility and addressing the ‘what’s in it for them’ is an ideal way to start. 

It’s easy to call yourself an expert. How do you demonstrate ethos in your presentations to back up your claim? 

So, how do you consider ethos when planning your next high stakes presentation?

1. Know your topic  

Ideally, you will be speaking on a topic in which you are a subject matter expert and keep abreast of current trends and insights into your theme. No one expects to attend a talk with stale or irrelevant information, so keep your content fresh and topical. 

2. Know your audience 

What does the audience understand about your topic of expertise? Are they fellow industry experts? Or do they know little to none about the subject? When you take the time to find out what you can about your audience, you can pitch your message at the appropriate level. No one wants to be baffled by jargon, and equally as ineffective is to water down material to an audience who crave the details. While you can never please everyone, if you find out who will be attending your talk, you are more likely to deliver content that reaches the intended audience. 

3. Demonstrate confidence and presence

How you deliver the message is as important as what you say. When you work on your body language, natural movement, gestures and voice, you can present in a way that gains attention. Things to avoid are; saying sorry, shrinking, speaking in high-pitched tones, and speaking ‘at’ rather than ‘with’ people. Learn to work and control your breath and your voice, so that you can stand grounded, and speak with authority as well as authenticity. 

Logos

speak persuasively using the concept of logos

Logos is how we appeal to logic and reason, and we can do this by providing evidence to support our message. Think about what data, facts and figures you can include that supports your message and gives it logical appeal. When we don’t get the right balance of logic versus emotion, we are less likely to appeal to our audience to take action.

Here are three ways that you can include logos to your presentation:

1. Use stunning visuals

I am not a fan of slides, as too often they are used poorly. However, when the right slide is used at the right time to provide relevant information to support your case, it works well. Think about how you can present your information and data in a way that is highly visual, engaging and memorable. 

2. Develop a logical argument

Your audience won’t be on board if your material is not presented in a clear and compelling way. A sound and logical argument is part of the premise for your speech. Use vivid, descriptive and sensory language. Providing a persuasive argument does not have to mean overloading with technical blurb or jargon. So long as you can make the connection between your point and your case, your overall message will be more persuasive.

3. Use real examples 

Real examples and case studies that are relevant to the context and content for a particular audience will go a long way. If the audience is unable to connect with your logical argument, they won’t come on board with your message. 

Pathos

speak persuasively using the concept of pathos

Pathos is how we appeal to the emotional side and connect with the feelings of our audience, and is a tool that we can use to create a shared experience. If they don’t feel anything, they don’t do anything differently, and it’s not necessarily the warm and fuzzy feeling you want to elicit. There may be times when creating feelings of anger and frustration may be the required catalyst for change. As speakers, we are not in the business of making people feel good; we are in the business of helping people to change for the better. 

Here are three ways that you can add pathos to your next talk

1. Use analogies and metaphors

When you use figures of speech, including analogies and metaphors, you can create an emotional connection by tapping into the emotions felt by your audience. It may be a simple image or model that you show or a brief example. 

 2. Have some fun

To help your audience to take action, allow them to enjoy the experience. Even if your topic is heavy, consider how you can use light and shade so that you can lift the room. It’s not about being deliberately funny; it’s about uncovering the humour using everyday examples and observations. You don’t have to be a natural comedian to add fun and humour into your talks. Humour elicits emotion.

3. Tell stories

There is no better tool available to us as speakers than the ability to weave stories through our material. Let your stories do the work, use storytelling as a tool and take people on a journey.  

If you utilise pathos well, your audience will feel the same emotions that you do. Your audience will feel the pain, the joy, the hope, and the fear of the characters in your stories. They will no longer be passive listeners. They will be motivated to act.”

Andrew Dlugan

Here’s how can I help you

If you are looking for a keynote speaker for your next event let’s chat about how I can help make your event a success.  

If you would like to work with an experienced and certified Public Speaking and Business Storytelling Coach to help you prepare and deliver a pitch, award or conference presentation, then let’s chat about how we can work together. Wherever you are located in the world we can work together via Zoom or if you are based in Australia we can work together in person.

If you’d like a complimentary analysis of your speaking style and message or you’d like to chat about how I can help you transform your communication and speak persuasively then please get in touch.


As a Certified World Class Speaking and Storytelling Coach, I’ll help you mine, refine and deliver captivating stories for your business or brand and speak persuasively. Whether it is the boardroom, ballroom, platform, podium or stage, together we will craft powerful presentations with compelling stories that are hard to forget.

I help leaders who want to make an impact with their message through speaking and storytelling so they can be confident, memorable and credible as a communicator. 

When Data Meets Story – Why business storytelling is the key to compelling technical presentations

When Data Meets Story – Why business storytelling is the key to compelling technical presentations

If you love presenting data, then you’ll love business storytelling. Why? Because stories are the best way to get across an experience in a relatable way to your customers.

When you add a story to your data, you can simplify your material in a way that offers greater meaning, interpretation, and insight.

When you incorporate a narrative dimension to your data, you will make your analysis more relevant and interesting.  

If data excites you (but possibly not those on the receiving end), if you include narrative you will reach out in a way that increases your chances of creating a spark of excitement in others too.

Business Storytelling: Data is only data until you add a story, then it becomes data that people care about.

When you are creating the story to partner with your data, here are some questions to consider.

  • What can I do to help decision making?
  • What does my data describe?
  • And how is that relevant on a larger scale?
  • Or to put it simply, why should others care about the data?

A good story takes people on an emotional journey where the protagonist is taken out of the ordinary world into the unknown to face challenge and conflict.

The monomyth or the Hero’s journey is the best-known story structure. In a nutshell,  the hero is called to set off on a journey, leaving the familiar known territory (the ordinary world) and enters the unknown (special world). It is during this part of the journey that the hero faces uncertainty, challenge, and adventure. At some point in the journey, the hero meets a significant mentor and exchange of wisdom and learning takes place. This knowledge transfer may be in the form of a new skill or teaching, or perhaps a tool or way of being. The hero is now transformed and empowered with this new knowledge, the hero returns with the ‘elixir’ (new skill/tool) back into the old world and shares their newfound wisdom with others.

If you love data here’s five reasons why learning to tell stories will change the way you present:

  1. Data helps people to come to a decision, and when you are presenting data, your goal is to move someone to action.  By adding a story layer to your material, you will increase the level of trust and influence. People will care about why your data is essential and how it relates to them. You will draw people in with your business storytelling rather than push them out.
  2. When you add a story to your data,  you can combine the analysis and evidence along with the human element. A great story is evidence of a transformation, and when you can include characters and context, you will bring your data to life. As a technical presenter, if you share a story that includes narrative and analysis, you can connect with your listeners at the same time as demonstrating your credibility.
  3. It can take time and effort to share data. A visual story or metaphor, as well as spoken word business storytelling, will enhance your data by cutting through quickly and will make your data instantly look more compelling to customers. This may include an oral story or a visual story.  When you add the ‘human face’ to the data and weave this through, there is no doubt that you will reach people faster.
  4. Stories provoke thought. When you can tell a story about your data, you are inviting others to reflect on how the content relates to them, and in doing so, creating a shared empathy – a reason for others to want to know more about your business. Every great story has a shape, a structure and characters. When your characters are everyday heroes who are realistic and relatable, other people can imagine themselves in your story. Even better, when you create an “ah-ha’ moment, something for the audience to learn or take out from your data. You will spark action.
  5. A good story well-told is memorable. When you wrap a story around your data, you will create a way for your listeners to not only remember, but also repeat your findings. Another way to help your business storytelling stand out is to leverage metaphors. The metaphor you chose will reflect how you want your audience to think about your data or facts.

When you tell your business’ story aim to bring the characters to life, a masterful storyteller will make use of voice, body and emotion to create a compelling narrative that is hard to forget. Have fun weaving stories throughout your data.

Lisa Evans, MBA is the Director of Speaking Savvy and the Founder/Curator of Stories From The Heart. An award-winning speaker, Certified World Class Speaking and Storytelling Coach, TEDx Speaker Coach, Author and Improvisation Actor, Lisa works with leaders to mine, refine and deliver captivating stories for their business and brand. Whether it is the boardroom, platform, podium or stage, Lisa will help you craft a powerful presentation with compelling business stories that are hard to forget.

Bullying led me to a career as a professional speaker

Bullying led me to a career as a professional speaker

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. How bullying ultimately led me to a new career.

A toxic workplace almost destroyed me.

On 15 March 2019, it is the annual National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence. A day for schools and the community to stand together on this issue.

It’s a long time since I was in school. I do remember we had a set of unspoken rules and some people you simply avoided. I didn’t really pay much attention to bullies during my school years because it did not directly impact me or my close friends.

My three daughters made it through school without any incidents. I can only imagine how awful it is for kids who are bullied at school, the heartbreak their parents must go through, and the resources that it takes to try to stamp it out.

I became the target of workplace bullies

I first wrote about this in 2016 and have spoken about the issue of workplace bullying a few times since. Each time I speak about this issue people share similar stories. Some of the people I have spoken to have feared for their lives and have suffered devastating consequences of a toxic workplace. It is all too uncommon and bullying is one of the top reasons for absenteeism and lost productivity.

Face to face with my former bully

I was one of the escalating numbers of Australian employees targeted by bullying behaviour in the workplace.

As a former nurse of over 20 years, I often heard the expression that nurses ‘eat their young’ but my years of nursing were not like that.

Maybe it is because I worked in an intensive care environment for many of those years. When dealing with life and death situations, it takes focus and teamwork as well as trust and empathy, most of the time we were simply too busy! So I survived intact through that stage of my life.

It was when I had a complete career change and moved into the public service that I experienced bullying.

I was already coming to terms with a major life change

At the time, I was coming to terms with some major life challenges. A virus wiped out most of my hearing and as a result, I had to walk away from a career of over 20 years as a midwife.

I was fortunate to get the gift of a cochlear implant, and that was the beginning of my journey learning to hear again.

I was going well in my rehabilitation (it takes a long time for the neural pathways to learn to hear differently). I was juggling frequent visits to the audiology research team, intense learning at home as well as a full-time job and three teenage kids. Then the new manager started, and so did the systemic and prolonged bullying.

Smart bullies often don’t get caught

The bully and her allies were skilled at their cunning craft. They made sure they spoke out of earshot of others, waiting until no one else was around to verbally attack. Other behaviours included: sabotaging work, taking credit for work others had done, tossing humiliating remarks in meetings, spreading rumours, excluding members of the team and giving subordinates meaningless work.

I became the new target after speaking out after I saw others bullied by the same individuals. Initially, I didn’t understand why I was targeted. I was excellent at my job and respected by my peers.

From what I now know bullies often target people who are more technically competent or perceived as more successful than themselves.

As the toxic workplace became unbearable, it became harder to go to work. Some days I’d get off the train in the city, cross the platform and get back on another train home. The final straw came when I suffered a panic attack in the lift of the high rise building where I worked.

It got to the stage after 18 months where I couldn’t function at work. I sought the help of an independent counsellor. Up until that time, I had naively thought, perhaps the bully and I could talk things through, maybe even form a positive relationship. I was hoping management would stand by the policies that were there to ensure a safe workplace for all, but that did not happen.

The counsellor said to me that bullies don’t change, she recommended two options; either I could lodge a lengthy formal grievance process or walk away and get another job.

It was eight years ago that chose to walk away. What makes me disappointed is that I shouldn’t have felt like that was the only option.

That night

One evening I attended the book launch of  Bitch Fight by Vanessa Vershaw – a book about women bullying women.

As I arrived at the registration desk, I looked down at the sea of name badges, laid out neatly in surname alphabetical order, and I scanned the table for the letter E’s.

The brain is powerful when it comes to self-protection. I wasn’t looking for it, but one name leapt off the table, grabbed me by the throat and took my breath away (her surname was not the same letter as mine).

It was the name tag of the woman who was the leader of the small group of the nastiest women I have ever encountered in any workplace. At that moment I had an intense range of emotions purely by seeing her name in print. At that stage, I didn’t even know if she was in the room.

The impact of bullying is massive

How ironic that I was at a book launch on the topic of bullying, and the very person who led me to a complete meltdown was listed to attend the event. As I stared at that name on the registration table, her name in print screamed at me and I felt the same rise of bile in my throat that had become a daily occurrence at the start of my working day.

My survival instinct kicked in

I wanted to bolt through the door and leave as fast as I could, but I feared I might come face to face with her in the lobby.

I didn’t run despite my gut feelings. I managed to sit and listen to the speaker who bravely shared her experience of being bullied at a workplace.

My former bully was in the room sitting not far from me, a few rows behind. I wondered what was going on in her mind? Perhaps she had been a target of bullying behaviour herself. Maybe she felt some regret for her behaviour. I’ll never know.

Sending love and forgiveness

I didn’t speak to her, but if I had the chance (or the courage), these are the words I would have said – thank you.

In a new supportive workplace, I thrived. I got back on track with my cochlear implant rehabilitation, and I began my public speaking journey which helped me to build my confidence.

For the past eight years, I have immersed myself in learning the art of speaking and storytelling. I have discovered my voice and now teach and empower others to do the same.

I probably wouldn’t have followed this path if not for that person who bullied me – thank you.

We are the authors of our own stories. Fear is one of those stories we tell ourselves. That night I chose to write a new chapter of my story.

To my former bully – if you are reading this.

Thank you for giving me the courage and resilience to walk away and start over. Thank you for allowing me to redefine and recreate my story.

Every day we have choices and challenges. Today I choose to surround myself with positive people who support me. I don’t stick around with those who pull me down, and I have a zero tolerance for any form of workplace bullying.

Take care and above all be kind to yourself and others.

How can I help you?

Do you want to be part of a growing tribe of storytellers?  Join the story tribe online here and get your free “Find A Story in 5” guide.

If you are looking for a keynote speaker for your next event I have several speaking topics. Let’s have a chat about how I can help make your next event a success.

If you would like to work with an experienced and certified Public Speaking and Business Storytelling Coach to help you prepare and deliver a pitch, award or conference presentation then let’s chat about how we can work together. Wherever you are located in the world we can work together via Zoom or if you are based in Australia we can work together in person.

If you’d like a complimentary analysis of your speaking style and message or you’d like to chat about how I can help you transform your communication then please get in touch.

As a Certified World Class Speaking and Storytelling Coach, I’ll help you mine, refine and deliver captivating stories for your business or brand. Whether it is the boardroom, ballroom, platform, podium or stage, together we will craft powerful presentations with compelling stories that are hard to forget.

I help leaders who want to make an impact with their message through speaking and storytelling so they can be confident, memorable and credible as a communicator.

Image. Max Lovensly Unsplash

This article first appeared on LinkedIn.

Boost your visibility as a leader with public speaking

Boost your visibility as a leader with public speaking

How to improve your public speaking as a leader

What skill can you work on that will improve your performance and success in multiple areas? I believe that improving your spoken word communication, will help you develop and excel in many ways including – boosting your confidence, raising your presence and visibility, enhancing your personal brand, developing your charisma, and building your credibility and leadership influence.

As a leader you want to be visible, self-assured and a great communicator. You have got a message to share, and an opportunity to share it by giving public speeches. Whether your message is about business, a cause you care about, or some other type of communication—your message won’t be well-received if you don’t present it well. If you’re not already an excellent public speaker, or you consider yourself to be ordinary, why not master the art of public speaking to become outstanding?

All the world’s a stage – William Shakespeare

Three ways to get better at public speaking

Speak More

Say yes to every opportunity to speak, even if it makes you feel uncomfortable. Be proactive and strategically seek out opportunities to speak. Don’t wait to be asked or until you feel you are more experienced. Do it now! Speaking is serving, and there are people who will benefit from hearing your message.

Get a coach and be coachable

If you want to fast track your spoken word communication, then work with a coach. I recommend you choose a coach who is not only a skilled teacher of the craft but also is in the public speaking arena themselves at a professional level. When you are coachable you are ready to do what it takes to excel including, putting in the work to self-review, prepare and practice. You are open to listening to feedback and willing to take a look at your own performance in order to improve it. When you commit to the work and you have the right coach you will get results and experience a transformation.

Practice often

There are no shortcuts to practice. It takes time to become masterful at public speaking and it requires dedicated and targeted practice. The 10,000 hours rule coined by Malcom Gladwell was taken out of context and is widely misquoted. It’s quality practice rather than the time spent doing something. When I wanted to learn to play golf, I couldn’t find a left-handed coach. I practised and practised but still didn’t improve. When I eventually found the right coach, my technique improved. I had been putting in the hours but I had been practising the wrong thing.

Not sure if a public speaking coach is right for you? I am happy to have a chat with you to find out what your current level of speaking is and what your goals are. Book a time to chat here or drop me an email lisa@speakingsavvy.com.au


About the author

Lisa Evans helps professionals to craft compelling business stories and become exceptional speakers. Lisa is a certified speaker coach, TEDx speaker coach, four times author, NLP practitioner, graphic recorder and visual storyteller, and improvisational actor. 

She has coached thousands of leaders across a range of industries, including resources, banking, finance, engineering, retail and sales as well as not-for-profit and community associations. 

If you wish to take advantage of a complimentary session in order to chat about how you can become an exceptional and successful speaker with a stand-out brand, then use this link to book a time to chat.

Here’s how I may help you

My services include:

Business Storytelling Coaching – together we can get started to create your suite of stories.

Executive Speaker Coaching – if you have an upcoming guest speaking opportunity, funding pitch, conference talk or you want to be an outstanding speaker, we can work together on your technique. You will see the results after one session.

Tailored Workshops – I can come to you, or we can host a workshop offsite for your team. From half-day to two-days immersive, this customised workshop is an ideal way to kick start your business storytelling strategy and get the whole team telling stories.

Keynote/Guest Speaking either in person or via virtual means at your next conference or event.