Guest Post from Speaking with Strategic Impact Author Kate LeVan & a Book Spotlight Giveaway

This morning, we have the pleasure of hosting a guest post from author Kate LeVan as part of the book tour for her latest book:Speaking with Strategic Impact.  .  Read her thoughts on a smart move for a smart woman, check out her new book and enter to win a prize in the book tour giveaway at the end of this post!

Guest Post from Kate LeVan, author of Speaking with Strategic Impact

A Smart Move For A Smart Woman
Sometimes, it seems politically incorrect to do what is best for an audience.  In these cases, you still must consider your relationship with the audience as primary and see these situations as opportunities to gently introduce colleagues to a better way. Here’s one example.
My client prepared a short presentation for a conference, after which she was told she would participate in a panel discussion with four other presenters who had done the same. No other guidance was provided until right before the event, when I got a frantic call.
She had learned that the organizer and other presenters—who clearly hadn’t yet prepared their respective remarks—decided that they would huddle on a couch up on the huge stage and casually banter about industry trends while the audience looked on.
My client was disheartened because she had spent time preparing a researched point of view and motivational message for the association membership and saw this as an opportunity to position her company as an industry leader. She figured that all her time had been wasted and that she had no other option than to play by the new rules.
As I saw it, the situation had all the marks of a group of people who were a) avoiding their responsibilities as guest speakers; and b) trying to make themselves feel safer by resorting to the lowest common denominator—sitting up there and winging it for ninety minutes. My other observation was that the organizer/moderator probably didn’t know how to structure the interaction in a way that would provide the audience with any real value.  This presented an opportunity for my client: there was a void, and she already had what was needed to fill it.
My client expressed concerned that she would appear overly confident and show-up the other presenters. I told her that this might be an unintended consequence, but that she needed to get clear about her real audience—the membership. Besides, her thematic approach, heartfelt words and professional delivery would make the moderator realize that inviting her was the smartest decision he ever made.
In the end, she presented as we had rehearsed with the slight adjustment of beginning her opening from a seated position. As she got into her point, it seemed natural to ask that one key slide be shown.  She later reported that it was as though the event suddenly came alive. Her inspirationaltag line caught fire andeveryone—the moderator, audience members, andeven the other presenters—kept referring to it and her insights as they built on her point of view. The program was a success for everyone—but especially for my client who had stepped up to add real value.
So, connect with your audience first in a way they expect. Earn the right to (subtly) ask them to tolerate something a bit different in the interest of giving them the most satisfying and productive outcome possible.  If you do it for the audience and not to grandstand, you can’t go wrong.

Meet the Author

Kate LeVan trains, coaches and collaborates on business communication effectiveness with major corporations worldwide and as an instructor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. Her training consistently receives top ratings from executive development program participants for its simplicity, applicability and career-changing impact.

Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook

About the Book 

Speaking with Strategic Impact is for business people who make their living—or their mark—through presentations long and short.

It’s a must-read if you’re a consultant, analyst, pitch team leader, roadshow executive, technology specialist, project manager, internal or external marketer, sales rep, subject matter expert or innovator.

Do your presentations unexpectedly fall flat? Do others hijack your meetings? Do you spend more time compiling slide decks than actually influencing decision-makers? Has someone vaguely told you that you “should look more confident up there” or that you “lack gravitas”? Have you watched TED Talks but wonder how you can bring that level of effectiveness into real business presentations?

Speaking with Strategic Impact gives you the key to leadership presence and persuasion. More than just tips and tricks, it outlines a discipline for navigating real business situations with consistently superior outcomes that’s favored by top business schools and Fortune 500 companies. You’ll get specific strategic and tactical advice to keep you on the mark in your presentations and meetings—and differentiate you from the vast majority of business presenters.

Read Speaking with Strategic Impact to master the means by which you make a living and a difference in the world!

Buy the Book

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  1. Thank you for hosting me! I hope your readers find the article valuable.



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