Impact Audiences with Interactive, Interesting, International Insights

When speaking publicly, how do you make sure to impact your audience with interesting, international insights?

The Professional Convention Management Association hired me to speak yesterday at its annual convention in New Orleans. As usual, my talk was highly interactive and practical, covering client development issues in places as disparate as Buenos Aires, Boston and Beijing. Even though slated for the end of the day, the audience stayed engaged and the 1 1/2 hour program seemed to fly by…  Why? Something felt different about this program…

Well, the audience actively participated–REALLY participated–and shared lots off interesting, international insights. Some audience members shared insights gleaned during their work experience in Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Asia.  Others gave their perspectives as natives of Holland, Mexico, China or Turkey.

This highly interactive session gave me, as a speaker, an international insight: It really helps to make programs as interactive as possible–ESPECIALLY when discussing an international topic. The world may be flat, but it’s still big. In our global economy, select audience members will have interesting, international experiences that are different than the speaker’s–and sharing those benefits everyone. It also makes the audience feel really involved, as if the entire room is engaging in an interesting, international discussion.

So, whether you are speaking to prospective clients at an industry conference, or to fellow lawyers at a CLE program, solicit and encourage interactivity–and especially international insights– from the audience.

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