Recently I saw an excellent speaker at an HR conference. She was enthusiastic, smart, well read and incredibly informed on her subject. Her topic was increasing employee involvement and I was very interested in her presentation.
Turns out she’d worked for a big company and she’d pioneered using online bulletin boards to solve work, and non-work related problems, by giving them a common space to solve problems. She gave examples of corporate problems that were solved quickly and efficiently. There was even a story about a worker who was able to locate a donor match for surgery quickly and efficiently.
There was only one problem, she never got the audience involved. During previous sessions speakers got the audience involved asking questions, making comments and offering solutions. It was truly an interactive experience.
But during the talk on employee involvement, nada. One person asked a question in ninety minutes. One.
Her session had great information. But she never modeled the topic she focused on, getting people involved.
We all have to be careful when we try to cut the same kind of corners at work. We should understand that our words are important, but not usually the most important part of our presentations. No, there is often a much bigger message that we need to understand and respect if our message is to gain maximum leverage for our audience.
It’s our actions. Read the speech that you’re about to give to see if your actions are aligned with it.
If they aren’t aligned, you’ve got options. You can increase your walk. You can decrease your talk. Anything to get them aligned will help the cause. Yours!
About The Author: Bob Rosner is a best-selling author and award-winning journalist. For free job and work advice, check out the award-winning workplace911.com. Check the revised edition of his Wall Street Journal best seller, “The Boss’s Survival Guide.” If you have a question for Bob, contact him via firstname.lastname@example.org.