Speak From Your Heart

Occasionally I see a presentation that is really great.  That was the case yesterday.  I was at a meeting at a very large pharmaceutical company.  If you’ve been paying attention to the presidential election in the USA, you know that the entire pharmaceutical industry is under fire.  Health care costs are out of control, and many people blame the cost of medicine.

This company is working hard to adapt to its changing business environment.  They are in the midst of massive organizational change.  Nat Ricciardi is a senior leader at this company.  He embodies all of the five keys to success that I discuss in Straight Talk for Success.  He is self confident.  He creates positive personal impact.  He has been an outstanding performer over his entire 36 year career.  He is a dynamic communicator and one of the most interpersonally competent people I know.

Yesterday, Nat was the last person on a very busy agenda.  He took the stage and immediately won over a tired audience.  He had to stop because he ran into the dinner hour.  But he stayed at the venue, eating dinner with the meeting participants.  After dinner, he continued with a Q&A session.  He didn’t finish until he made sure that he answered every last question.

Nat delivered a dynamic presentation for a variety of reasons.  He knew his material.  He knew his audience.  He was able to present his thoughts in a manner that addressed the audience’s concerns.  It helped that he was a senior executive presenting to a group of employees in a company that is in the midst of massive change.

However, there was one thing that put Nat’s presentation over the top.  He spoke from his heart. 

It was clear to everybody in the audience that Nat not only knew his material, but that he really cared about what he was saying and how it impacted them.  He told personal stories about his life and career.  The strength of his talk was his willingness to share his humanity with the audience.

And that’s the common sense point here.  If you want to become a dynamic communicator, you need to speak from your heart.  Make sure your audience knows that you care about them as much as you care about the information you are presenting.  Give people a glimpse of you as a person.  Share your stories; your triumphs and failures, as well as your thoughts and feelings on your topic.  Show that you care – about yourself, your material and the people to who you are speaking — and your audience will hang on your every word.

That’s my take on the importance of speaking from your heart in order to deliver a dynamic presentation.  What’s yours?  Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts.  Also, please tell us about the best presentation you’ve ever seen – and what made it so.  As always, thanks for reading – and writing.


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