"No matter where you’re from, how old you are, or what your background is, we’re a lot more alike than we think. Our strength comes from sharing experiences and being together and when you’re down, someone else will lift you up. It’s something we know is so special and so important when we build our trips." - Danielle Thornton. On today's episode, I interview Danielle Thornton and Allison Fleece, co-founders of WHOA Travel, a community of kick ass women from all over the world. They put together adventures that help women get out of their comfort zones while accomplishing goals in a likeminded community. When I learned about what they do, my first thought was, I need to talk to them! You'll learn what the women who take their adventures learn, what motivated Danielle and Allison to start their company, and how it is helping women to find their voice and change their lives. What I love most about this interview is hearing their zest for life and their outlook. They say, "Shared like-mindedness is what bonds women at the end of the day" and "If you've got that inner voice telling you there's more to this life, it's because there is." If you are an apprehensive public speaker and could use a new outlook on your speaking adventure, look no further than this episode. As the women of WHOA would tell you, "If not now, when?"
Fear. It's one of the things that stops us from getting on stage, stops us from saying what's true for us, and stops us from asking for what we want. In today's episode, you'll learn how to reframe fear so it not only helps you, but walks alongside you like a good friend. My guest, Christina Stathopoulos, is the Founder and Head Coach of Hear Her Roar, a private coaching practice for women. She is an Accomplishment Coaching-Certified Coach who specializes in working with high performing women who are keen on developing bold voices, perfecting the work/life balance, and creating a life that serves them. As you hear her career journey, she discusses decisions motivated by fear and what she did when she realized her whole life had been built on running from it. She gives us tips on how to invite fear to the stage with us, how to think about nervousness differently, what it might look like to reframe negotiation and hard conversations, and what she does today when fear pops up. Christina is walking her talk and will give you a lot to think about how you handle fear in your own life. Rather than conquer it, learn how to befriend fear on today's episode of Claim the Stage.
Last week, I brought you a couple of interviews with the women of speaking school. Today, I continue that trend by bringing you conversations with three more women who've graduated from my signature course, the Speaking School for Women. You'll hear from Sandra Costello, a photographer who experienced a life changing moment that made her reevaluate everything. She tells us how she discovered what she wants to speak about, what she learned about herself, and what's she's doing today. You'll also hear from Mindy Rodenburg, a branding professional who infuses Southern hospitality into everything she does. She'll share a hilarious moment from the stage and give her best advice for women who are considering paid public speaking. My last interview is with Dawn Powell-Morris, a woman who changed her direction after figuring out her brand during the course. She is now working on another huge project before taking the stage and she'll tell you all about it. Listen in as they share their insights, reflections, and ah-ha moments on today's episode of Claim the Stage.
If you are interested in enrolling in speaking school, there are 8 spots left as of 1:00 PM EST on Wednesday, February 1, 2017. Registration closes when the spots are filled and school starts February 21st. Get more information here or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
My signature program, the Speaking School for Women, is back February 21st. The school only opens twice a year and I'm often asked what the experience is like. In today's episode, I talk with a couple of the women who participated in it and ask them about their time in the school, what has happened since then, and their best advice for aspiring speakers and students. This is part 1 of a two-part series in which I get a chance to talk with women I consider to not just be past students, but also friends. Today you'll hear from Meghan Godorov, a career coach who focuses on helping mid-career professionals get unstuck and move forward with their career and Kelsey Flynn, a communications professional, standup comedian, and speaker on the subject of digital detox. These women are funny, insightful, determined, and having fun living life. Next week, I'll talk to three more women who will share their experiences with speaking and their advice for you. Enjoy!
After last week's episode about the STAGE System, I received a lot of questions about what it actually looks like to take the steps I outline in my method of speech craft. The questions weren't all simple - many of them had an undertone of anxiety and fear that made me realize I needed to talk a bit more about the process of arriving at your personal style as a speaker. This episode outlines that journey and I teach you how to do it so you don't make yourself crazy in the process. This is a shorter episode than normal, but don't let its small size deceive you - it packs a punch! If you haven't already listened to episode 32, I'd recommend starting there and then coming back to this episode. It'll make a lot more sense. Enjoy!
Hey friends! Welcome to my first episode of 2017. I'm back!
Rather than create another boring slide show or endlessly rattle through tons of data, what if you could learn an approach that teaches you to build a presentation that showcases your personality, highlights your unique experiences, and allows you to deliver your stories and information in a way that feels good to you?
After giving 700+ talks, I’ve realized there is a formula for being yourself on stage. I put it all together and created the STAGE System which is an acronym for style, truth, art, group, and energy. It gives you a chance to pause and ask yourself who you want to bring to the stage. If you are naturally funny, how can you incorporate some humor into your talk? If you went through a life-changing experience, how can you tie that into your subject? If you love interacting with the audience, how can you make that a big part of your speech? By using the STAGE System as your guide, you build your talk so you are in your element and really shining on stage.
If you want to craft a speech that puts your personal stamp on every presentation, you are going to love this episode.
Are you aware of how often you use weak language? In this eye opening episode, Dr. Phyllis Mindell, a pioneer and expert on professional communication, walks us through the many mistakes women make when it comes to sharing our opinions, giving feedback, presenting our work, and asking for what we want.
She tells us:
--the ONE word we must avoid almost all the time when speaking
--why you should take a second before you speak and the questions you should ask yourself before you open your mouth
--when women tend to use weak language the most
--how to rephrase your statements so you are not in opposition with your audience
--how to be a sweet, gentle, tough broad
--the one statement you never want to use at work and should also avoid at home
--the four most common mistakes women make on stage and what to do instead if you want your audience to trust and respect you
--the secret of all good communication
Find out more about Dr. Mindell's work at www.thewordgrandma.com launching on her 80th birthday, January 30, 2017.
Kara Martin Snyder has made a career of turning around chaotic, painful situations ranging from bankruptcy cases to constipation. Her wide ranging skills come from making a huge shift in her 20s when she realized her job was killing her. What she has done for herself and others since then is inspiring and a great example of how you can take a literally shitty situation and turn it into a whole new career path. Kara shares how she helps frazzled, Type A women to face their health concerns and feel better through her coaching, podcast, and speaking engagements.
In this episode, you'll learn how Kara prepares for her talks by tempering her ego and her pacing. She shares her advice for cutting down your material so you don’t overwhelm your audience, we discuss the value of hydration, a good meal, and sleep as speech preparation, and you'll learn how to rescue yourself and your audience from a tanking talk. Kara also shares why you should start speaking now and say yes to opportunities even if you think you’re not ready. You'll also hear the cringe worthy story of a moment that went being the most shameful event of her life to an enlightening revelation that changed her course forever.
Alison Podworski knew at the age of 9 that she wanted to be a television news reporter. After years on TV, she transitioned to work in PR and opened her own agency to assist small business owners, speakers, authors, and other types of clients with their PR needs. In today's episode, Alison shares her #1 piece of advice for every business owner, no matter what age or stage. She tells us what PR really is and why speakers need a PR strategy, how to get national attention by focusing on local media outlets, popular misconceptions about PR, what a PR agency does and how they help increase your chances of getting media attention, how to create a compelling angle when pitching yourself to the media, steps to take to promote your speaking gig yourself through social media and press releases, what to do if you have a limited budget but want to start building up your PR opportunities, how to think of yourself as an expert if you don’t think you are ready for that title, and so much more! This episode is action packed with all things PR. If you're ready to get noticed and start building your brand in a big way, you'll love what today's show has to offer. Enjoy!
“Speaking is a great way to demonstrate thought leadership, expose your brand, and get business. Speaking is a business development effort.”-Steve Markman
Today's guest is Steve Markman, president of Markman Speaker Management, a speaker placement firm. Steve helps speakers get both paid and unpaid speaking engagements by using his 30 years of event and conference experience. In this interview, he shares with us the most important thing a conference organizer is looking for when they hire a speaker, the falsehood among speakers that stops them from landing big speaking gigs, the one thing a paid speaker must have on their website to get hired, what your speaker video should include to showcase you as a speaker, and the #1 reason you won’t get hired for a speaking gig. Steve also shares the most common negative feedback speakers receive and how to avoid it, and how to present like a pro. Find out the three most important questions to ask yourself to get started as a paid speaker, and much more! Steve really knows his stuff and this is the perfect episode if you have any interest in being seen as a leader or speaker in your field.
When Stacey Shipman was in 6th grade, she won the "Quietest Girl" award and now she is a brave communication expert who helps people do things they think they can't do. This episode is all about the art of the interaction and how to create a genuine connection with your audience through engagement. She teaches us the first step to go from presenting a monologue to creating an interactive experience, what the "Rule of Threes" is and how to use it, how to incorporate humor into the questions you ask your audience, and she tells us the biggest mistakes speakers make when trying to engage the crowd. She says, "A presentation is a work of art. It's a creative opportunity to put words together and deliver them verbally. It's a living thing." She also shows us a unique way to quickly build trust with our audience, how to show up as yourself instead of someone you think you "should" be, and so much more. If you want to learn how to build a meaningful conversation and a memorable experience for your audience, you don't want to miss today's episode of Claim the Stage!
What is "embodiment" and why will it make you a better, less fearful speaker? My guest Donna Brooks says, “Embodiment is living the fullness of your incarnated experience. It’s that moment when you feel rich and full of life in yourself. Without that, it doesn’t give our audience the fullness of what we can offer and express to them.” In this week's episode, we're taking a whole new approach to speaking by using fear as the doorway to connecting with your audience. You'll learn how to create a playful, fun, light experience for your audience rather than putting them under stress and wondering when it will end. Donna will also teach you how to reduce fear over time and use it to energize your speech, how to stop abandoning yourself on stage to create a better experience for you and your audience, why you should stop trying to entertain your audience (and what to do instead), and you'll learn the two questions to ask yourself before every talk. And, great news! You don’t have to follow the old fashioned public speaking rules to be an effective speaker. Find out how to do all of this and more on today's episode of Claim the Stage!
How do I book my first gig? What if I'm not an expert? How do I know what my value is? In this special episode, instead of me asking the questions, you're the guest interviewer! I took your questions from social media and email and compiled a list of the top six. If you're interested in writing a book, learning how to build a speaking business while working full-time, how to determine how much information is too much in your speech, what to do when you feel like everyone around you is a success (and you aren't), and how to find your authentic voice, you've come to the right place. I tackle all of these topics and more in today's episode of Claim the Stage. PS: I'll be doing more episodes like this, so keep the questions coming! You can submit yours at email@example.com. Enjoy!
Lara Hogan's first public speaking experience was horrifying to say the least. Not only did she live to tell about it, she also continued speaking and has become an authority on the subject. Besides presenting on stage, Lara is also the author of the new book, Demystifying Public Speaking and an Engineering Director at Etsy. In this episode, Lara shares why being an actual human helps you to be a better leader, how to create a conversational tone while also being rehearsed, how to use notes effectively in your speech, why it’s important to know what you’re actually afraid of when it comes to public speaking (and what to do about it), how to feel like a superhero on stage by wearing the right clothing, how to get started as a speaker if you are not the typical expert/guru, why you should challenge yourself to say “I don’t know” five times a day, and so much more. You'll also find out why donuts should be part of your regular celebrations. Get Lara’s book at www.ABookApart.com and find out more about Lara at Larahogan.me.
We often hear that being our "authentic self" is the best way to connect with our audience and build a strong personal brand. But how do you show up on stage as yourself if you're new to speaking, scared of doing it wrong, and worried about where to put your arms? In this episode, speaker coach Sally Zimney gives us practical advice to find our authentic voice on stage, teaches us the common misconceptions of what it means to be a great speaker, and shows us how to create a memorable talk every time. Sally's experience as an actor and speaker combine to create her philosophies and unique take on what it means to be a speaker who creates an amazing experience by simply being you.
Do you ever wonder if you're doing everything you can to be seen as a strong presenter with a confident voice? In this episode, public speaking expert Laurie Schloff teaches us how to create an effective message, how to deliver a speech like a boss, and how to get over fear and nervousness on stage. I ask her one of the golden questions I'm always asked: Can you tell right away if a speaker has what it takes to be one of the greats? and we also talk about the little things like dress, microphones, using the stage appropriately, how to stand, how to use your arms, and how to use vocal variety to create impact. I share a few stories about my own mistakes on stage and Laurie gives us pro tips that will help you avoid the weird things I've done. Enjoy!
Hiking, bears, blisters, oh my!
A few months ago, my friend and I set out on a seven day, 75 mile hike of the Appalachian Trail in north central Maine. Being an inexperienced hiker who is also Type A and goal oriented, you'll hear all the highlights (and low points) of what this hike held for me. I share what I learned about my beliefs, the stories I tell myself, how I see the world (and how it changed), when I hit my breaking point, how I got out of my tent each day (it wasn't pretty), and much more. I even give you a challenge at the end which could end with you being featured on my podcast! It took me two months to finally get enough perspective of this experience to share it with you and I hope you enjoy the retelling of pivotal moments that will forever change my life. If you want to submit your story to be featured here in December, email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for listening...enjoy the adventure!
Sarah Feingold was the first lawyer and 17th employee at Etsy. Now, she's General Counsel at Vroom.com, a public speaker, and a jewelry maker. In this episode, we talk about (and laugh about) the legal basics for aspiring professional speakers. This includes how to act like a lawyer when creating and reading contracts, how to be taken seriously as a speaker, how to know what you can protect through trademarks and what should be freely shared, and how to share your content while also protecting yourself. Sarah reminds us that all contracts ARE negotiable, and teaches us how to avoid a legal nightmare stemming from a speaking gig. Sarah also shares her personal mission statement, which I totally love: "I empower the dreamers, partner with the doers, educate the thinkers and inspire the aspiring. But most importantly, I hold hands with my spouse, sing with my child, and melt metal with fire." If you want to learn the basics of protecting yourself before getting on stage while laughing along with us, check out this episode.
As speakers, we know marketing ourselves is important. But how do you create a strong platform for yourself that adds to your credibility, social proof, and builds your brand? What about using content marketing to land you a publishing deal and subsequent paid speaking gigs? In this episode, Dorie dissects her key moves that took her from writing on her own blog to publishing a book through Harvard Business Review and then Portfolio, an imprint of Penguin. Dorie has become a recognized expert in the space of personal branding, reinvention, and business success by taking the steps she outlines in our interview. If you want to learn from someone who started at the bottom and worked her way up, this episode is for you.
In-demand professional speakers become well known because they have perfected one very important part of their message. It’s the one major thing that sets them apart from the unknowns and you will learn it in this special live, interactive podcast I recorded on September 7th, 2016. In this class, you’ll learn the two most important questions to ask yourself before getting paid to speak (and I’ll teach you how to answer them), you’ll find out how to determine your real target audienc, learn how to determine what you'll be known for, and you'll build a plan to start booking a gig with your new speaker brand. This episode also includes live coaching and an introduction to the Speaking School for Women, my signature course, which starts September 26th. Enjoy! Learn more about the Speaking School here: angelalussier.us/speaking-school
Val Nelson is an introvert and former wallflower who absolutely cringed at the idea of speaking up in front of a room. She now actually enjoys public speaking, in small doses. She has faced her fear of self-employment and speaking up, and now enjoys having a thriving business as a soulful business and life coach. Her specialty is helping introverts bring their gifts to the world, and keep breathing along the way. No extrovert mask required. In this episode, we cover the real differences between being an introvert, an extrovert, and an ambivert, tell the truth about whether or not introverts make good public speakers, discuss how introverts can get over their fear of being on stage, and Val shares how to go about becoming a well-known speaker in your field. We also cover the downsides of speaking for introverts, what Val has learned about herself as an introvert speaker, and common misconceptions. As an introvert myself, I learned a ton from Val in this action-packed episode and I'm sure you will, too. Enjoy!
Ever wondered what it would be like to have a motivational speaker in your pocket? In this episode, I interview Thando Zono, a motivational speaker, author, All-American athlete, and my intern! You'll learn about how Thando wrote a book while also attending grad school, hear some of her advice for speakers, and listen as she tells us how everything changed for her when she became an author. She also shares the funny story of how she became my intern, tells us the three most important principles in her book, The Pursuit of Excellence, and teaches us how to create a culture of success. Thando is a ball of positive energy and she seeks opportunities at every turn. Her outlook, advice, and vision for excellence are inspiring to say the least. Enjoy!
If being memorable is something you care about as a speaker, this episode is for you. Jim and Jenn Poage are the authors of the book FLAIR: Design Your Daily Work, Products, and Services to Energize Customers, Colleagues, and Audiences. FLAIR shows how to add meaning and joy to your offerings and communications to create a positive and lasting impression for your target audience. In this episode, we discuss companies that do flair well, and the ones that miss the mark. Jim and Jenn teach us the six elements of flair and we dig into the ones that are most important for speakers to use. One of the areas Jim focuses on is the value of stories and how to WOW your audience by including them in your talks. My favorite part of the interview is when we talk about the concept of offering a "meaningful and joyful essence" through our work. They remind us that in order to provide value, we must remember, "It's not what you do, it's what you provide." Learn more about how to leave a lasting impression on your audience and stand out above the rest in this week's episode of Claim the Stage.
One day in the 1980s, Martha Johnson was concluding a three-day training of sales professionals when she asked a pivotal question that would forever change the direction of her work. She made the bold move to ask her audience if they were planning to implement what she had just taught them. Not a single person raised their hand. How Martha responded to this shocking truth is what makes her a true pioneer and gifted trainer. In this episode, you'll learn the five steps of Martha's trademark "Willingness Check" that will help you to uncover what may be stopping you from taking action and accomplishing your biggest goals. If you dream of booking reoccurring $5,000+ speaking gigs (but aren't), want to speak in front of audiences of 1,000+ (but haven't yet), or see yourself becoming a leader in your field (but feel stuck at "unknown"), you are going to love this episode. Grab a pen and get ready for an interactive episode that will have you thinking deeply about why YOU might be unwilling to go after what you most want. Get a copy of Martha's 5-step Willingness Check by emailing her at Martha@taketimeforyou.net.
I'm often asked if being funny on stage is a prerequisite for "making it" in the speaking business. In this informative and entertaining interview with Cathy McNally, master of all things humor, you'll find out whether or not tickling your audience's funny bone is as important as you think. Cathy also teaches me two improv games (which we play, totally unscripted) to help me (and you) increase my ability to be funny on the spot, identify where the jokes lie, and get comfortable delivering stories in a way that elicits a laugh. When Cathy works with her clients, she is teaching the fundamentals of storytelling, finding places to insert vulnerability, and training her students to land a well-crafted joke. In this episode, you'll learn all of this and more! It includes: whether or not being funny is something you can learn over time, how to make a joke if you're someone who can't remember scripted jokes (that's me!), how to use physical comedy, how to practice being funny, and you'll get to hear me make a total fool of myself as I attempt improv with a pro! Cathy also offers a tip sheet which outlines some of her key takeaways. It's at my website: angelalussier.us/podcast Enjoy!