I hope you’re winding up a great holiday weekend filled with an attitude of gratitude. THANK YOU for your time and your attention. I hope this weekly series is contributing to your Leadership Communications growth. If there is anything you’d like me to address, please let me know.

Clean up –> Last week I introduced Lisa Lopez without even mentioning her website! That was an oversight and thank you to those of you who asked about it! Find Lisa here: https://www.livinglifepurple.com/

Now, I want to share the lessons learned from my talk in India. I’ll use the Blue Angels 80/20 format, with 20% being what I could have done better and 80% being what I think worked.

In this video, I am speaking to nearly 700,000 people at Gurukunj Mozariin near Nagpur (Tiger Capital of the World!), Maharashtra, India in honor of social reformer and saint Tukdoji Maharaj, who said: “Humanity is my religion – our highest duty is to each other.” It was an exciting and powerful event. And I was honored to be there.

Let’s start with what I could have done better. I took my script to the podium. That was a total mistake! The organizers wanted us to read the speech since it had been pre-translated for the TV screens. I should have politely declined because I had this talk memorized.

The script became a magnet for my eyes tempting me to second guess myself. I’ve seen this happen to others, now I know what it’s like. Big lesson learned. If I had a do-over I would have left the paper behind. That way I could have also escaped from behind the podium!

That said, I’m proud of my talk. It was slightly bifurcated – starting out focussed on women and then enlarging to all humans – but I think it held together and the messages were mutually reinforcing. It also turned out to be a message that was more important – and which needed to be heard there – more than I realized. I was allocated 3 minutes and I went 2:57.

My purposeful opening got a great reaction. Shouting the name of a big hero of the audience, who was also a big supporter of women – Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj (that’s his full name) and adding the local language “ki” at the end – which makes what I said need a response – got their immediate attention and excited involvement. I spoke a bit of their language, while demonstrating I knew something about their world and heroes.

In the large VIP Tent setting you’ll see that there was minor chaos on the stage and the TV monitors with the translation were all outside the VIP tent – to benefit the less fortunate. So, the audience closest to the actual stage didn’t see the translation, which made it much harder to keep their attention and interest.

Finally, I wish I would have smiled more, but I am happy that I talked slowly and deliberately. I separated my words so that they would be clear and understandable for people who are not native English speakers.

If you noticed other things, good bad or indifferent I’d love to hear from you – just hit reply and let me know!

How John Bates blew his TED TalkBy JOHN BATES / ABOUT AUTHOR
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