Saturday, August 30, 2014

Speaking of Fear in Business, Halloween, and Scary Topics

In a delightfully fun conversation with two association executives, the CEO and the director of meetings for a large trade association, they labeled me "The Scary Speaker".  

The topics that I proposed to present at their event, which would include the opening keynote and two breakouts, will cover "Networking", "Negotiations", and "Presentation Skills".  They noticed the coloration between each topic was that people were scared of these themes.  

It is true, these are scary.  But in business we must conquer many fears to reach our full potential.

They will be hiring me to cover "The Trifecta of Fear" (as the CEO dubbed my three talks) and we joked that it was too bad their convention was in the April, and not in October. (I think they envisioned me in costume as Dracula or Frankenstein while on their stage.  Booooo!). 

What is it that causes business professionals fear the very skills that will guarantee them more success?  It could be the perception of what it means to network, negotiate, or speak.  In each case there is a relationship and communication involved.  And when dealing with other people, we clearly face the unknown.  This makes us vulnerable to make mistakes, or to be judged (and nobody like those options). 

When I speak and train on these subjects I like to think I am "The Fear Buster".  All opportunities come from people, thus we should not be frightened about how we engage with those whom we encounter.  

In most cases the people we meet networking, those on the other side of a negotiation, and the audiences where we present are all on board with wanting to see us succeed.  That is important to remember.  Once learned, simple strategies for all these topics should forever make them less nerve wracking.

Conventions that are planned by fun people who engage speakers on a personal level are always the best ones.  I know the conference that these two are conjuring up will be bewitching and enchanting (too much with the Halloween theme?).

Have A Great Day

thom singer

1 comment:

Ilene Haddad said...

Well, you're not so frightening, but the topics definitely are. That's why I try to outsource my weaker skills as much as I can. Unfortunately, that's not always possible, and I have to go outside my comfort zone. Wait a minute—maybe that's a good thing?

Now that's scary.