Generating the Right Emotion in a Corporate Meeting
Generating the right emotion in our events is something that we take pride in. When we design meetings, one of the first questions we ask is, “What is the feeling that we want to generate in this meeting?” The answer will be different for every company. Some will not even want to answer the question until the very end of the planning process when the substance of the meeting is squared away. The truth is that it’s the most important consideration to make. Is that to say that substance is not important? Absolutely not. Substance is essential! But so is emotion. A football team with lots of emotion and no substance will run onto the field energetically, passing some high-fives as they run, but will lack the knowledge to fulfill their plays. The team with lots of substance and no emotion will come out strong, but lack the ability to push together as a team when the game gets hard. Substance and emotion are both important, but emotion gives us the drive to finish strong, no matter the substance we are given.
Practice What You Preach
It’s an old saying, but it really works to practice what you preach. There is nothing more hilarious than seeing companies or individuals talk big, but perform small, and then wonder why they’re not getting the right reaction. Some of my personal favorites:
- A church sign reads, “We welcome new members!”, but when you go inside, nobody says one word to you.
- A husband repeatedly tells his wife how much he loves her, but then he avoids her, cancels dates, and spends more time with his buddies.
- You call a business and immediately get put on hold. The message that plays every 20 seconds, for the duration of your 30 minute holding period, says “Your call is important to us. We will be with you shortly.” Really? I’m important to your business? I don’t think so.
So you can clearly see why it’s important to practice what you preach. In a “meeting,” or emotional experience, it is equally important to practice what you preach. If you are creating a meeting for a bunch of accountants about the company’s outlook for the future, and where you plan to be in a certain number of months, you’ve got to get them pumped up. You can’t throw out the goals in a monotone voice. You can’t use the same old slides. You can’t use that same CEO who has no emotion. It will not excite your accountants. It will not get them pumped up. It will not create the results you want. You can’t throw out the goals in a monotone voice. You can’t use the same old slides. You can’t use that same CEO who has no emotion. Instead, you need to get excited yourself. Whoever is speaking or presenting needs to be an emotional presenter. They need to show that they love their job. They need to show how appreciative they are of their audience. They need to help their audience have some “aha” moments where they start thinking, “I never realized that.” They need to emotionally connect with the audience. They need to be believable by practicing what they preach! Then, and only then, will you find success through emotional experiences.
Why Is an Emotional Connection So Important?
You want a successful experience, don’t you? Why wouldn’t an emotional connection be important? Too many presenters forego the emotion in order to get through their part more quickly. The problem is that when you speak, you should be trying to change the hearts, minds, and attitudes of your audience. You should be trying to move them so that they will get excited about your presentation. Too many presenters forego the emotion in order to get through their part more quickly. We can see from the history books why emotional connection is important when communicating or presenting an idea:
Never heard of him? Neither have most people. His partner, Paul Revere is pretty popular, though. You see, when Paul Revere took the “ride” that he’s so famous for, Richard Dawes was doing the same thing. They went two separate ways, carrying the same message that the British were on their way. The difference that made one forgotten and the other go down in the books is that Paul Revere became involved in the community. When he spoke, he used passion and emotion. Richard Dawes, on the other hand, was boring. He did not get involved, and he did not communicate with passion.
A past Chairman of the Board for Coca-Cola. Not only was he spot-on with the information he presented, but he could move an audience like nobody I’ve ever seen! His emotion spilled through and he was powerful. The first part of every presentation was personal connection time. He spoke to the people as individuals. He called them by name. He knew things about their personal lives. He sent well-wishes to some, congratulations to others. After he had connected and everyone felt comfortable, he would drop the important information. I believe he was the best at using an emotional connection. He truly was the master.
Do You Value Your Audience?
Part of the reason that an emotional connection is so important when presenting is because it shows that you value your audience. Whether they are your associates, your sales force, or even your dealers, emotions are very effective in helping them realize their full potential in order to remain motivated. Part of the reason that an emotional connection is so important when presenting is because it shows that you value your audience.
Emotion is electricity! It is power that takes a message to individuals. It is power that creates messages. It is power that turns on the light bulbs in your audience members’ heads. Without electricity, power stops. Without emotion, the message stops. The power of the emotion has to start in the board room during the planning stages of any presentation, and carry on through the execution of the message. Something else to keep in mind is that you need to let the emotional electricity flow back to you! Your audience will send back the same type of emotion if you power the room successfully, and you can use that power to create more! It’s an amazing process that happens when managers pay attention to their audiences, employees, and work associates. Emotion is electricity! It is power that takes a message to individuals. It is power that creates messages. It is power that turns on the light bulbs in your audience members’ heads.
The Proof Is in the Pudding
Emotional experiences work! They worked in history, they work today, and they will always work. In the day and age of digital connection, people long for a real emotional connection, whether they realize it or not. Solidify the relationships you have at work! Show emotion! Connect with customers and employees! When you do this, presenting will come more naturally, and your audiences will know that you are adamant. Only 3% of communication is the words that come out of your mouth. The other 97% iswhat you DO.
DO allow your audiences to see, experience, and feel.
DO express emotion.
DO practice what you preach.
DO create emotional connections with employees, co-workers, and clients.
You can always show emotion without giving a spoken message, but you can’t give a spoken message without emotion. Make sure you use the right emotion and energize your audiences! When someone attends one of the meetings that Corporate Magic creates, they often make comments like, “I belong to a great company and feel so special because of the effort they put forth to make this an important event, just for me!” Do you think someone who makes those comments will perform better on the job? I do. What are you waiting for?