Do you remember this scene from the movie “Best Man Holiday” when Harper (played by Taye Diggs) asks his old college buddies (and the boyfriend of a dear friend) to boil their core values down to three words? Lance (played by Morris Chestnut), an NFL football player in the film, quickly rattles off his big three—“faith, family, football”.
Can you rattle off the principles you stand for? Recently, I thought about my three core values as I prepared to deliver a speech on business storytelling. I traced my defining values—caring, coaching and competence—back to the small Caribbean island of Nevis, the homeland of my maternal grandparents. My grandmother Adina passed these values on to my mother Helen, who passed them on to me.
Caring, coaching and competence—my values—tell you more about me than my resume. They represent who I am and what I stand for. As a business communicator for more than 20 years, I have seen a slow decline in our ability to connect and communicate with each other.
We have very short attention spans, and they’re shrinking every year. The average person’s attention span dropped from 12 seconds in 2000 (before Facebook, YouTube and Twitter were around) to only 8 seconds in 2013.
That means, when you talk to people, you need to be a skilled communicator to hold their attention. That’s why I teach business executives and professionals how to deliver their message in an interesting way. We need competent communicators who can connect with any audience, no matter how short their attention span is.
I believe communication is the key to solving problems at home, in the workplace and in the political arena. That’s why I love standing before a group or sitting with a client coaching them on what to say or do to express their ideas with passion, enthusiasm and power. Coaching presentation skills is my way of adding more effective communicators to our community, corporations and schools. Those are my core values.
The next time you’re in a job interview, at a networking event or making a business presentation, please share one or two of your core values. You’ll be more memorable if you include your values in a story or example that illustrates the essence of who you are. Remember, your core values define who you are better than your resume!
Stories are a great vehicle for connecting people. Learn how to share your personal or professional values through storytelling. If you want to build your business storytelling skills, email me at Rosalyn@portercoachyou.com