Be an ‘Unexpected’ speaker and change your world.
Sun Tzu Principle: “Take advantage of the enemy’s unpreparedness, make your way by unexpected routes, and attack him where he has taken no precautions.”
Being a speaker with platform presence is not rocket science kind of intelligence. Really. I’m not a rocket science kind of smart. But I have learned how to stand in front of a audience and hold their attention… to move them… to cause them to think, believe and want to take action.
Engaging with an audience carries responsibility. It comes with a requirement of creating something, something vital to the retention of attention. As a speaker, you have the responsibility of inspiring curiosity in that audience. And, it is not restricted to just being a business speaker at a conference, a sales meeting or an event.
Whether you are a teacher, a lawyer, a manager, a CEO… if you are communicating with an audience — be it one person or one thousand — you have a responsibility to arouse curiosity. You have a responsibility to be an unexpected speaker.
Let me give you an example of what I mean. You may have heard of Jaime Escalante, the Bolivian immigrant who completely changed a very tough high school in Los Angeles.
The 1988 movie, Stand & Deliver tells his story. He motivated struggling, unmotivated kids to believe in their ability to excel at math and science and he did it by arousing curiosity as a communicator. He was an ‘Unexpected’ communicator. Without even knowing it, Jaime Escalante was using an Art of War principle.
What is curiosity? It’s a lot of things: enthusiasm, questions, energy, human connection, motivation, on and on. Curiosity allows us to be different. To do things differently…and to have fun doing it.
Here’s the action point of the day: Engage the heart and mind of your audience the next time you are speaking. Ask questions. Probe and allow them to come on the journey with you.
Don’t be ‘normal’. Be different. If you’re curious you will always want to be different. If you’re different, you’re memorable and when you’re memorable the audience is less distracted. Suddenly everyone becomes more curious.
Even the “difficult audiences” can be opened to the world of curiosity. Jaime Escalante proved that! That is being an unexpected speaker… and he changed the world for his audience.