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Making a difference

Over the years, I’ve met quite a number of great speakers who had no idea how good they were.

Often, they would rather avoid the stage, sometimes even dislike the mere thought of standing on a stage. They usually identify much more with being the person in the background, doing the work, while the spotlight is for others.

So, where does the mismatch come from? I think it boils down to the fact that, when they have to do it, they take speaking seriously, much like they do with every aspect of their work. They don’t speak because they want to, but because there’s a reason to speak up.

First of all, they realize it’s simply part of their job. But more importantly, it’s an opportunity to make a difference. And so they prepare thoroughly and try to figure out what truly matters to the audience, so that they can actually make that difference.

They don’t show up to show off. They show up to share.

And that’s a huge contrast to the other kind of mismatch where people consider themselves to be a natural born speaker but, in reality, are far from being one.

In my experience, these people tend to think that they don’t have to prepare that much and that they can just go out there, wing it, improvise a little bit, and simply be the great speaker that they think they are.

But the truth is that even a little preparation changes the game. It’s what makes the difference between good and great speakers.

And so if you think that you’re not a great speaker, that you don’t really like the thought of standing on the stage, probably that’s a chance for you too.

Why not take it as an opportunity to make a difference, prepare well, and then go out there, tell your story and make that difference!

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