This my 1st Insight Article based on my recent Colorado Springs Seminar…
It seems the mantra of choice for any presentation I give to a group nowadays is “edgy, hard-hitting, and unconventional”. For me, speaking in front of a group is a delicate balance of showmanship, authenticity, truth, and impactfulness.
Essentially, I believe if I speak to a group of people, I should make an impact and make a difference, not just burn up time. I know there are a lot of ways of doing so but the trick is to do it in a way that resonates with my own personality and style.
I have attended too many seminars and presentations where the “bullshit factor” and “sleaze factor” is high. I tend to believe I can get at least a nugget of wisdom from almost any speaker but jeez, why do I have to put up with a high “bullshit factor” and “sleaze factor” to do so?
And while there are credible and informative speakers, some are basically so boring, monotone, and “sanitized” for political correctness, the truth and impact gets lost.
My attitude is that I am an imperfect human being but always seeking to improve my performance. However, I also believe that life is too short to continually “filter and sanitize” my communications especially in areas which I consider important and personal. My business, my work, and my team are areas that are both important and personal to me. I tell it like it is, good or bad.
I understand there is professional etiquette and social graces but it can be taken to the extreme. If an occasional 4-letter word slips out of my mouth, then so be it. If I happen to make a negative broad generalization over a certain occupation or industry such as real estate agents and the brokerage industry, then so be it. However, keep in mind that it is only a generalization and it is context sensitive, not an attack on any individual. As a general rule, I do not judge the life worth of people or whether they are fundamentally “good or bad” people. I tend to make judgments and negative statements in context-sensitive manner. If my audience reads more into it and start taking things badly and personally, I would say that is their issue.
One of the reasons I have made little effort to promote myself to speak more is that I like to have a great deal of control who my audience is. Going forward, I intend to keep my “edgy and unconventional” approach and people will be forewarned. It is like going to see an “R-rated” movie. If someone wants a “G” or “PG” presentation, go elsewhere. But if an audience wants something more gritty, real, and can deal with a “PG-13” or “R-rating” presentation, come to me.