Whether you’re a corporate exec, a midlevel manager, or an independent striver — and whether you want to start a success or grow one — you need to be able to meet the market. Figuring out how to interest and influence others, particularly when it requires or invites significant change, can be intimidating. When you’re walking a challenging path, it’s good to have a guide.
A guide can be a person or a handbook, and you can get both from Sam Horn. She describes herself as an “intrigue expert and TEDx speaker who helps people create one-of-a-kind projects that scale their income and impact for good.”
I’d say she’s an amazing communicator and coach. Since coming across her TEDx talk, I’ve read several of her books and met with her. Sam sounds the same whether she’s on the stage or the page: full of funny and relevant stories, practical experience, and plainspoken wisdom. Here’s a three-act plan for getting unstuck and moving ahead based on the sense and savvy in her books:
Act I: How Do You Feel?
If your self-talk is undercutting your progress, or you know what you need to do, but can’t get on with it, try What’s Holding You Back?: 30 Days to Having the Courage and Confidence to Do What You Want, Meet Whom You Want, and Go Where You Want.
Reading this book is like chatting over the fence with a nice neighbor who also just happens to be a self-help guru, and wants you to get out of your own way and use your potential. Its practical, put-one-foot-in-front-of-the-other advice will help you make progress on things you really care about.
Act II: Make Sure You Appeal
Nobody gets “found” anymore. It doesn’t matter how truly wonderful you are. You need a hook to help your product or organization stand out from the crowd or no one will even notice that you’ve got something special to offer. For this stage of the game, POP!: Create the Perfect Pitch, Title, and Tagline for Anything is full of solid techniques to help you name and describe your idea or initiative.
The book is loaded with great examples of how to be “Purposeful, Original, and Pithy” and grab the attention of your target audience quickly and effectively. The techniques are broken into bite-sized chunks, so all you have to do is follow the steps. You don’t need a marketing department to get value out of Pop!, and it’s so entertaining you won’t feel overwhelmed by the work.
Act III: Get the Deal
How can you show that what you’re promoting has specific value for your audience? You need to cut through the bloviation and distraction to make a deeper connection, full of credibility and promise.
Got Your Attention?: How to Create Intrigue and Connect with Anyone helps you take your project or proposal on the road. To get your audience to take action, you also need communication, collaboration, and a commitment to helping them accomplish their purpose. The content is very current, it doesn’t feel like a grind, and it’s delivered in quick bites, so you can tackle each a chunk in just a few minutes.
Now Make It Real
You can think of this journey as moving forward from the inside out, starting with you as the center of your own attention, toward a focus on what gets the attention of others, and then locking in relationship to get a buy-in or a go-ahead. Whether you’re a corporate exec, an entrepreneur, or a soccer parent, if you apply Sam Horn’s sense and savvy, you’ll surely enhance your own potential, pizzazz, and performance.