When a speech is more than just talk something happens. When the speaker inspires the audience to do just one thing they would not have done before, all the time and effort invested into the speech is worth it.
You don't have to be a 'motivational' speaker to inspire your audiences to take action. And the actions they take can be very concrete and even quantifiable. How do you do this if you're a serious business speaker?
First, you remember to put the audience first. This means: talk about their needs, their sticking points, their challenges. The audience that believes you know them and care about them becomes responsive to your calls for action. They feel a contract has been made--you gave them something and they will give you something back.
Next, tell your own true story and make it relevant to your audience and your point. When you're telling about how you climbed the mountain, ask them to imagine how they would feel facing such a climb? As you overcome obstacles, as them questions and use analogies so they make the connection between overcoming mountain climbing obstacles and doing better work.
Then ask them to take action. Describe this action by painting a vivid word picture.
Here's an example: "Pause at the door of your office or cubicle. Take a deep breath. Stride purposefully to your computer. Type the vision you created today in a large font. Print it and post it where you will see it often."
Here is what not to say: "Remember your vision and be sure to implement it when you get back to work."
The action taken after a speech is what gives the speech value to your audience, and also to you. Putting the audience first, using well-written and delivered stories and providing a clear call-to-action all add up to a high return on the investment of your speech or presentation.
How do you make your speeches more than just talk? Share your ideas through our comment link.