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Leveraging Thought Leadership

Feb 20, 2022

What's the best way for a speaker to help their audience connect with their ideas? 

Many organizations have brilliant employees with a great depth of knowledge, but when it comes time for them to share that knowledge, they have trouble finding their voice. How does a speaker connect with their audience? How do you evoke emotion, and gain the investment of your listeners?

Our guest today is Dr. Nick Morgan, one of America’s top communication theorists and coaches. He is also the President of Public Words, coaching speakers and business leaders in methods of connection, helping them develop their ideas, and bringing their insights to life with powerful language that will move people to action.

We discuss why it's best for thought leaders to focus on their insights, narrowing their area of expertise and making their ideas accessible to learners. Nick explains that speakers should share stories that are relevant to their audience, otherwise it won't hold interest. In addition, your story should identify a specific problem that the audience understands, and illustrate concrete solutions. That's how a speaker connects emotionally with their listeners.

One method of establishing an emotional connection is by telling stories of conflict or failure. While many have difficulty sharing such personal stories, Nick describes why these are exactly the stories your audience most needs to hear. They want to understand the stumbling blocks you faced, and how to overcome those challenges and reach success.As a coach of some of the world’s top speakers, Nick shares great advice for breaking through the primal fear of public speaking. He discusses why speakers should establish a clear narrative, and how to gain confidence through repetition of those stories. 

If over the last two years you've felt disconnected or misunderstood during virtual conversations please check out Nick's book Can You Hear Me?: How to Connect with People in a Virtual World.

If you are planning to add speaking to your repertoire, or even if you're an experienced speaker, this episode is a trove of wisdom. Listen in!

Three Key Takeaways:

  •        To make an emotional connection with your audience, you need to find the intersection between thought leadership and listener relevance.
  • Share your thought leadership expertise in a narrow band,  and seek out an audience that needs your insights.
  • Be passionate about your thought leadership. The audience can only be excited if you're excited, too!