What a Brand Idea!
November 27, 2009 1 Comment
Ahh. . .unstructured time to think, to dream, to write. . .gotta love these 4-day holidays!
I’ve had time to work on the homework (actually, work ahead!) for the Apprentice Program of the National Speakers Association-Minnesota Chapter. http://www.nsa-mn.com/ipsd.php
One suggested activity was to answer 8 questions to determine key concepts that define your message. The questions are from Meryl Runion’s Brand Aid: http://www.speakstrong.com/articles/speak-strong/brand-aid.html
Answering these 8 questions made me dig deep into myself, what I value and what value I can provide. I found it to be a worthwhile exercise that I will probably repeat from time to time as I refine my message. If you want to focus in with laser-like power on your message, I highly recommend thoughtful consideration of the 8 questions!
Below are my answers to the questions (more guidance on each question is given at the above website):
1) What is your vision of a perfect world?
Imagine a world where…Where people feel accepted, valued and understood and everyone is approachable and open to making small talk that leads to closer relationships and more significant results (more commitment, more collaboration, more sales, and less hate, less prejudice, etc.).
2) What is the contrasting current reality?
Instead of this perfect world, we have a world where…people avoid, ignore, irritate and offend others, often unintentionally.
3) What obstacles prevent the world from being like your perfect world?
The obstacles to my perfect world are…self-centeredness, being too busy, lack of confidence/self-esteem (fear of looking foolish or stupid), old habits, lack of knowledge.
4) What do people need to know to create your perfect world?: To create this world, people need to know…the importance of small talk, how to be approachable, how to initiate and sustain small talk and move it into deeper communication. People need to know how to communicate to resolve their differences in a mutually beneficial manner.
5) What principles do people need to believe in order to create your perfect world?
My perfect world is based on the beliefs…that all human beings are unique and have and give value. That face-to-face interactions are important and can not be completely replaced by technology-enabled communication.
6) What do people need to do to create your perfect world?
The steps to create the perfect world are…1. Adjust Attitude. Sincerely seek to understand as much as to be understood. 2. Adjust Body Language. 3. Listen fully and reflectively. 4. Empathize 5. Accept 6. Bridge the gap by finding commonalities 7. Learn and practice the dance of conversation.
7) What do people need to stop doing to create your perfect world?
To create this perfect world, people need to refrain from…Judging others and themselves! People need to refrain from body language, tone of voice and words that convey negativity—disdain, disinterest, dishonesty, hostility, etc.
8) What about your answers are unique to you?
I am the only one who…talks about small talk not only as a means to an end but also, and perhaps the biggest “result” of all, as a way to encourage a world where people feel accepted and free to connect without judgment.