Lead Mentor Speak

Today I went down the memory lane on my years at Apple: the culture, the internal code, the people, the skills, mentoring, fearless feedback…

We live in a world in dire need of more mentors everywhere.
But What do Mentors do?

– Model Desired Behavior
– Fearless Feedback, Safe Learning Environment
– Ask Questions and Challenge Ideas
– Insights from their Own Successes and Mistakes
– Accessible to People they are Mentoring
– Encouraging, Supportive Professional Ally

Before moving to Romania I had it on my heart to share the wisdom and professional and social skills, to anyone willing to learn. To influence change within my world. Finding such a group proved harder than I thought. I had wondered which is harder: to be a leader without people to lead? Or to be a leaderless follower?

Once you see clearly, once you advance in knowledge and experience, you can’t unlearn, you can’t unsee the light.

Sometimes the enthusiasm gets people too hyped too fast and then deflate. It’s safe to say that I trust the steady growth. Though enthusiasm is paramount.

Today I got to read a book entirely. A book I had been putting off for years, a book called “100 things”. The anticipating of a meeting got me going. When immersed in my uniquely flavored training, this book seemed too broad. Read with the perspective of my experience, years of training customers and team members, I realize I was doing all these instinctively or by watching others over time.

Public speaking has always fascinated me. And I had ample opportunities to practice, though I have one observation: you have to be in the mindset (aka mood) to stand and speak in front of an audience. Though practicing doing it when you are not in the mood is a great exercise.

Here is something to ruminate on from the book:

“What you may not realize is that being the presenter gives you automatic authority. Through an inherent social reaction to a leader, as well as through learned behaviors, people have an automatic initial reaction to obey someone who is in authority. When you walk in front of the room, whether in a small meeting room or a large auditorium, the assumption is that you are the leader and you are in charge. That authority can be quickly diminished or lost, based on what you do, but it is yours at the very beginning. In the rest of this chapter you will learn what you might unconsciously do that diminishes your authority, as well as many things you can do to keep and enhance your natural authority.

Make sure that your walk to the front of the room shows confidence: Stand up tall with good posture, take your time, don’t rush, don’t fidget with anything while you walk. Plant your feet firmly on each step. If you are the presenter, then you are the leader. Your audience wants a strong leader. If you walk confidently, your audience will be inspired to “follow you” into the presentation.

Before you begin to talk, “set” your body. Stop, face the audience, stand firmly with even weight on both feet, look at the audience, smile a little bit, take a deep breath, and then begin. It will seem like too much time has passed without talking, but it will not appear that way to the audience.”