People Don’t Want Speakers They Want Guides

I just finished producing and hosting our first version of You Lost Me Live with David Kinnaman in Washington DC.

YLML helps young people and those who lead them see the incredible number of opportunities that are sitting right in front of them to take the ways of Jesus public.

My team and I design live events that engage the audience by asking them to help shape the content. Short presentations ignite public conversations. Spontaneous interviews take place with expert practitioners who are “discovered’ right in the event. All wrapped up in live music.

We see this kind of design as the future of live events- public conversations that leave people feeling more like they were at a concert than a conference. An experience that engages and exhilirates rather than exhausts people.

In a recent study people were asked to identify the biggest mistakes teleseminar presenters make
(this applies to live presenters as well)

1.Lecturing too much. When teleseminar leaders lecture too much,
it’s like the adults in Charlie Brown, after a while it all sounds like blah, blah, blah.
Lecturing is dead. People can check out without even leaving the room. Smartphone?

2.Too much content – yes, teleseminar (and live) leaders can actually can give too much info! Audiences are not as stupid as they used to be (Google). Now they can watch(Youtube)and read (Wikipedia) about you on the way to the event making you less important as a celebrity but more necessary as a guide (due to info overload)

3. Too much focus on themselves and not enough focus on the attendee – Too many teleseminar leaders want to talk all about themselves and what they know. Remember, the teleseminar attendee is thinking, “WIIFM – What’s In It For Me” Live interaction lets the presenter know directly what the audience is wondering about. Instead of them doing Q&A with you, you do Q&A with them. When you are answering a question they want answered they will truly listen.

4.Not engaging the audience – This is all too common. By not engaging the participant, they cannot retain nor apply what they have learned, making the teleseminar (and the leader) forgettable.At JHP we like to say “people remember what they say not what you say” Get them talking to each other about your ideas and you engage them. It’s like people who cant stop talking about the band they just heard or movie they just saw.

One thought on “People Don’t Want Speakers They Want Guides

  1. Interesting! At church we are trying out not having sermons, but rather breaking into groups of fifteen to twenty with a fascilitator leading discussion rather than a teacher lecturing. About half the people are really needing to be coaxed out of their shells, but already (only four weeks into the experiment) most people seem more engaged.

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