It’s Oscar Night: 5 Things Every Entrepreneur Can Learn from Hollywood’s Biggest Night

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Photo provided by Ahmet Yalcinkaya, Unsplash

It’s Oscar night. The night when Hollywood’s biggest stars gather together to salute the year’s biggest moments in film.

I look forward to the Oscars, and all of the big award shows, the way some people look forward to the Super Bowl. Why? It’s the night when creative artists achieve their dreams. And we, as viewers, get an insider’s look at all the preparation that goes into creating a role, script or film.

Films like La La Land, Hidden Figures or Lion are so captivating it’s easy to forget about all of the time, resources and people it takes to produce it.

As visionaries, entrepreneurs can get overwhelmed when beginning a creative project like launching a podcast or online course. All of the questions pop up: How do I start?; What do I need?; How long will it take?

Hollywood writers and directors begin a film with a simple concept. It’s only then that they can create a timeline, budget and team to bring it to life.

Whether you want to create a film or podcast and whether or not you have a million dollar budget, there are 5 key things you can learn from Hollywood’s biggest night.

Dreams Need Teams

During their acceptance speeches, actors rattle off all list of names of people who have helped them during their careers. That list includes acting coaches, agents, wardrobe and make-up teams, fellow actors, production crew members, writers and more.

Dreams needs teams. Who do you have on your team? Who would you like to add – virtual assistants, bookkeepers, marketing agencies, web and graphic designers or customer service representatives?

Who can you add to your team this year to help you achieve your goals?

Never Stop Learning

Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling took dance lessons for their roles in La La Land. Lucas Hedges worked with a dialect coach to perfect his Boston accent in Manchester by the Sea.

Actors enhance their skills from physical fitness, to learning a new language or accent, or learning to dance and sing.

What skills can you improve this year? There are many areas entrepreneurs can improve from writing blog posts or marketing copy ; improving networking skills to build relationships or perhaps a technical skill like editing video or audio for a podcast.

Success is an Iceberg

What you see on the big screen is the result of months, and sometimes years, of work. It takes years of writing, casting, filming, producing and editing to take a film from concept to the movie theater. What is left out of the final edit of a film are all of the set backs and challenges from delays in production, budget issues, casting changes, location and weather issues among others.

It’s easy to watch others succeed and fall into a trap of “compare and despair”, especially when you’re not reaching your goals, or they’re taking longer than you planned. Like an award winning film, remember you’re only seeing the finished product. Look below the surface and remember all of the work it took to get there.

Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight

Great actors have a way of making acting look easy. Flawless even. However, even stars like Meryl Streep and Denzel Washington have to work to perfect their craft. Some actors never win an award, despite being nominated, and others take years to win Oscar gold. Leonardo Dicaprio received his first Oscar nomination for What’s Eating Gilbert Grape in 1994. Twenty-two years and four nominations later, he won Best actor for his role in The Revenant in 2016.

Enjoy the Journey

“It’s an honor just to be nominated.” How many times have you heard an actor say those words? Whether or not they are disappointed by not winning, many would continue to be an actor for the pure joy of it. How many working actors are there who are not household names, never get to wear the fancy dresses or grace the cover of the magazine? Yet they continue to work as professional actors.

With 2017 in full swing, I know you have big dreams you want to achieve. Take a cue from the Oscars and you’ll be on your way to many golden moments!


What idea do you want to bring to life? Begin today by scheduling a complimentary strategy call.

5 Speaking Secrets Every Introvert Should Know

I love speaking at live events. It’s an opportunity to share my message, connect with others and create an impact.

For an introvert like me, speaking in front of a group requires a lot of energy. Over the years, I’ve learned to manage my energy while building my speaking platform.

Being an introvert doesn’t mean you have to shy away from the stage. In fact, many actors, musicians and artists have built successful stage careers, despite their introverted personalities.

Here are 5 tips introverts can use to help navigate public speaking opportunities.

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Practice, practice and then practice some more

Speaking is like any muscle. You have to keep using it in order to stay in shape. The more you practice your speech, the more you will be comfortable with you material, which lessens the fear of forgetting what you’re going to say. Speaking to groups on a regular basis will boost your confidence making the experience less intimidating.

Connect to your story

There is nothing more inspiring to a live audience than a passionate speaker. If you feel nerves creeping up, remember why you are there. What inspires you to do the work you do? How do you serve others? What have you learned that you can share with the audience?

Taking a moment to connect to your story will keep the nerves at bay so you can deliver your best performance.

Be of Service to Your Audience

When speaking to a group you are sharing information with those who need it most. The audience wants and needs the wisdom, advice and solutions you have to offer. Thinking about the information that is most important to the audience will take the focus off of you.

Channel Your Inner Sasha Fierce

There are numerous actors, musicians and artists who are introverts including Harrison Ford, Christina Aguilera and Lady Gaga. Even a powerful, fearless performer like Beyonce admits to channeling her alter ego, Sasha Fierce, when she takes the stage:

“Sasha Fierce is the fun, more sensual, more aggressive, more outspoken side and more glamorous side that comes out when I’m working and when I’m on the stage.”

Take a cue from Beyonce (and let’s face it, who doesn’t want to be as fierce as Beyonce every now and then?) and create your own persona the next time you take the stage.

Schedule Self-Care

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Speaking in front of a crowd – whether that crowd is ten people or ten thousand – requires a lot of energy. For introverts, performing and socializing with a crowd will drain your energy leaving you feeling depleted.

That’s why it’s important to schedule time for self-care before and after any speaking engagement. Carve out downtime before an event so you can reserve your energy for the stage.

After a speaking gig, you may feel a buzz from the energy of the crown and adrenaline rush. Don’t be fooled! That buzz will wear off leaving you with a “hangover.” Leave time after an event to rest, get a massage, or other self-care activity that will restore your energy.

Are you an introvert looking for support with building a speaking platform? Schedule your complimentary consultation to get started.

What is the message you were born to share?

What is the message you were born to share?

Do you have the desire to be a speaker, but worry you don’t have a story to tell?

You are not alone. I hear this a lot when speaking to entrepreneurs who feel called to share their message in a bigger way, but don’t think they have a powerful story.

Have you ever looked at the pros – those entrepreneurs, speakers and thought leaders who have built a big platform, deliver amazing TED talks, and grace the stage at national events – and think to yourself, “I could never be like them because I don’t have a story.”

Perhaps you think your story isn’t compelling or “BIG” enough.

If you’ve ever felt like you don’t have a story, I’m here to tell you:

Everyone has a story to tell. Yes, even YOU.

Let’s dive into a few ways you can craft your signature story:

Define Your Story

Like finding your voice, your story will take time to develop. It’s important to take time to uncover your story.  To dig beneath the surface to uncover gems – the experiences, challenges and adventures you’ve forgotten about.

Here’s an exercise you can try: draw a line on a sheet of paper. The line represents your life with one end representing the day you were born; the other, the present day. Begin to fill in all the key milestones in between – graduations, marriage, moving, career changes, children, writing a book, traveling, and so on.

Review all of the events and achievements over your lifetime. What did those experiences teach you? Is there a pattern or theme? That’s usually a key element of your story.

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photo courtesy on Unsplash

What’s the Journey?

What is the transformation you help your clients achieve? For example, if you’re a health and wellness coach, you help your clients improve their nutrition and fitness levels.

If you’re a business coach, perhaps you help your clients transition from being in debt to increase their profitability and bring in more revenue.

Or perhaps you help empower your clients to silence their inner critic so they can reach the next level in their life and business.

Whatever the service you provide, you’ve most likely walked a similar path in your own journey. That transformation plays a key role in the signature story you’re here to tell.


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Photo courtesy of Aaron Burden, Unsplash

Play Reporter

Have you ever looked in the refrigerator but couldn’t find the milk? Only to have your spouse point out it was right in front of you?

Sometimes the answers we seek are right in front of us, but we’re too close to see it. That’s why it’s helpful to recruit a friend to help you uncover what’s you’ve become blind to.

Invite a friend to interview you about your goals and what’s driving you to share your story. Here are a few questions to help you get started:

1. Briefly describe your business / career.
2. Why did you start your business? (if you’re a corporate profession: Why did you choose this field/industry?)
3. What are you passionate about your work?
4. What do you enjoy most about the clients you work with?

5. Why is sharing your story so important to you?

6. What do you want to be know for? What are you the expert in?

7. If you could leave an audience with one message from your talk, what would it be?

Have your friend recap the conversation. What did she learn? How would she describe you and your work?

You may be amazed at what’s right in front of you!

If you’d like support with crafting your powerful story, I’d love to help. Reserve your complimentary session, so you can take the first step towards the spotlight!

7 Ways to Prepare for Speaking Opportunities in the New Year

As the year comes to a close, there are a few ways you can prepare for speaking opportunities in the New Year.

Here are 7 things you can do before December 31 to set yourself up for success:

1. Update your bio – Is your bio current? Give your bio a refresh to reflect speaking engagements, media, interviews or awards you received in 2017.

2. Compile a list of recent speaking engagements – Where did you speak in 2017? Create a list with the name of the event, date and topic you presented. This list will come in handy when applying for speaking opportunities in the New Year.

3. Gather testimonials – Do you have testimonials from past speaking engagements? Like your business services, testimonials provide social proof of your speaking skills and value. Using the list you created above as a guide, reach out to each event organizer and ask for a brief testimonial you can use on your website and speaker materials.

4. Create a list of speaking opportunities for 2018 – You may have a list of key speaking engagements you’d like to book for the coming year. In addition, ask your network for recommendations of events, podcasts, livestreams and other speaking opportunities. It’s a great way to expand your reach.

5. Mark your calendar – Carve out time on your calendar in January, at least 15-30 minutes a day, to focus on your speaking strategy. This time can be used to build connections, research new opportunities and write proposals to book your next gig.

6. Update your social media profiles – Does your LinkedIn profile include speaking? Why not? Highlighting your speaking experience will make your profile stand out from other thought leaders in your industry. The next time an event planner is looking for a speaker, your profile will pop up to the top of the list!

7. Update your website – Like your bio and social media profiles, your website should reflect your most current speaking engagements. Create a separate page on your website to showcase your speaking experience and watch the opportunities flow your way!

Looking to ramp up your speaking in 2018? Schedule your complimentary call and get started today.

Build Your Speaking Platform in 3 Easy Steps

Wouldn’t it be great to begin 2018 knowing exactly what to do to grow your speaking platform?

As a heart centered visionary, I know you’re here to do big work in the world. And you feel called to speak to make a greater impact.

Speaking is a great way to connect with clients, establish your thought leadership and grow your business.

While there’s no formula for success, there are a few key ingredients that will build a foundation and make your visibility soar.

Find Your Voice

We all have a voice. Yet, finding your voice is one of the greatest struggles for many entrepreneurs. Once discovered, it can also be the key to standing out from the noise.

To help define your voice here are a few questions to get started:

What 3 words would you use to describe yourself? Is this how you would describe your speaking voice?

There are others who do the work that you do, but what do you do differently?

What are your strong opinions or beliefs?

A second way to define your voice is to think of a story you want to share with your audience. Now, pretend you are telling the same story to a friend. Do the styles match up? Do they sound the same?

Finding your voice is the first step to being visible. It’s also the way to engage your audience and developing a following.

Define Your Story

What is the message you were born to share? One of the concerns I hear most often from clients is that they don’t have a story to share. Or that their story isn’t compelling, special or unique.

Everyone has a story to tell – even YOU.

Like finding your voice, your story will take time to develop. Dig beneath the surface to uncover gems – the experiences, challenges and adventures you’ve forgotten about.

Here’s an exercise you can try: draw a line on a sheet of paper. The line represents your life with one end representing the day you were born; the other, the present day. Begin to fill in all the key milestones in between – graduations, marriage, moving, career changes, children, writing a book, traveling, and so on.

You’ll remember events and achievements you’ve forgotten about, which may spark your signature story.

Build a Platform

Your speaking platform is the foundation that will get you to the next level. That means, getting speaking experience under your belt. If you’re new to speaking, start small. There are numerous opportunities available in your local community from Meet Up groups to associations to the Chamber of Commerce. You can also be a guest for online podcasts, livestreams and webinars.

When you have a track record it makes it easier to book larger speaking opportunities.

In addition to your experience, building a foundation includes growing your community (online and off), perfecting your story, creating speaker materials and having a strategy to set you up for success..

When all of those pieces come together you’ve build a platform that will launch you to the next level. Continue to build the momentum and raise your visibility. Beforeyou know it you won’t have to seek out speaking opportunities. They will come to you!

Ready to take your speaking to the next level in 2018? Reserve your complimentary session and watch your visibility soar!