Covid-19: Golden Tips for Professional Speakers, Trainers, Coaches, Consultants, Facilitators, and Businessmen

Covid-19: Golden Tips for Professional Speakers, Trainers, Coaches, Consultants, Facilitators, and Businessmen

Andrew Chow  03/11/2020 3
Covid-19: Golden Tips for Professional Speakers, Trainers, Coaches, Consultants, Facilitators, and Businessmen

Write The Future (WTF) isn’t always a bad thing; it’s just the perception of a commonly known acronym.

What does WTF stand for? Where’s the Future or Write the Future? Let’s consider Where to Focus (WTF) instead. Virtual Training may be mainstream training in the future.

What is the one word you would use to describe the world now? Uncertain? Opportunistic? Challenging? Whatever word you use will shape your action and plan for the future. Use one word to describe the future of the professional speaking business. Be careful of what you are writing now about the future.

What is your message to the world now? Are you marketing your brand or branding your marketing by focusing on empathy? You can achieve influence by building trust with your customers that you will be there for them in this trying time. Serve more than you sell.

While we are concerned that changing our business model may not lead to a better revenue model, it is better than not evolving at all. Your opportunities and money follow your business model.

Digital transformation is not about just leveraging technology; it is about learning the technology quickly and teaching it to others. Technology enables a speaker to be a producer-speaker or transforms a trainer into a producer-trainer.

Our mindset and potential must be shaped by our adaptive resilience, optimism, creativity, and pragmatism. Our legacy is not in our accolades or achievements. It is in our lasting impact on the rest of mankind and future generations. It is never about ‘me;’ it’s about ‘we.’

What’s Happening? The World and Us

  1. “When you walk with purpose, you collide with destiny,” said Dr. Bertice Berry. So if we walk only with Profit, we will collide with Destruction. Choose wisely who you walk with.
  2. If you’re not using your voice for good, shut up! Slow down; don’t do too much; focus on what brings you joy.
  3. 2020 is the year for customers, not prospects.
  4. Start with a beginner’s mindset. Small pivots will add BIG changes. Don’t chase the perceived competition. Get out (virtually) and talk to customers. Change starts with you; be BOLD! Love Generation C (Communication, Collaboration, Connection, Compassion).
  5. If you want to see Covid-19’s big picture and its effect, see it as the “next future” instead of the “new normal.” Nothing will be normal in the future. What’s next will always be exciting.
  6. This pandemic has a time-compression effect. A day in the Covid-19 era is like a week in the past. A quarter in Covid-19 is almost like a year ago. What realities and opportunities are we seeing this period?
  7. Focus on the business challenges in the Asia Pacific and the areas where we need to focus to be relevant to customers today. Their priorities must be our priorities if we want to thrive right now. They want to keep business afloat, manage the newly-formed remote workforce, and scale their operations quickly.
  8. We can be legends when we stop thinking about ourselves. When we ponder for a moment, we will create magic for those in need every day. It’s never about you. It’s always something bigger than you. When the old order cracks, new shoots will sprout. Reimagine, redefine, reinvent. Right now is a defining moment for all of us.
  9. A TED Talk is not just about storytelling and statistics presentation; it is about sharing an idea and raising your tribe of advocates. If you can’t explain your idea in three minutes, it is probably too complicated.
  10. A great TED Talk has a string that runs through your entire talk. A single idea is a thread. Explain your idea like you would write a Tweet, or write it down in 25 words on the back of a business card.
  11. It’s not about your desire to be on the TED stage; you do it because you want to transform an audience. But don’t give it all away. Leave the audience curious. When you share your point of view and it changes others’ perspectives, it is a successful TED Talk.
  12. The changes in how we work and communicate can produce a positive impact on our lives and help us find new meaning in our work. This is a big reset to our definition of the world around us.
  13. A pandemic is a marathon, not a sprint, which is why so many people got exhausted—they went out too quickly.
  14. What will change and what will change forever? Expect deep structural changes, which means we won’t go back to ‘normal.’ We were being disrupted before Covid-19; the 20s was going to be the decade of disruption. Covid is just accelerating it.
  15. Today we can work for any location in the world from the comfort of our homes. The future of work will see many of us playing multiple roles and interchanging them seamlessly.
  16. The cure for Covid-19 will not be a straightforward solution. The road to creating an effective vaccine is as complicated as finding out the future impact of this pandemic. Don’t make it worse by contributing false information or data. Take the virus seriously; listen to scientists; be patient—we have a long journey to get through.
  17. Behind every warrior in a crisis, there is always humility of the heart. Fight the invisible enemies with compassion for your people. Don’t ask, “Why me?” Instead ask, “Why not me?”
  18. Stay focused and true as you run your business. Choose the business that will resonate with you. Choose the business partners whose ethos and values are aligned with yours.

Who You Need to Be: Your Message, Influence, and Reach

  1. To discover your signature move of the brand promise, you have to identify your talents, clarify them with your trusted circles, and magnify them by being true to yourself. Do it with integrity first; profitability will follow.
  2. After every virtual presentation, thank the “haters” for their comments. Those comments will help you to improve and scale up!
  3. Thought leaders should choose social media platforms that showcase the color of their lives, the caliber of their minds, and the composition of their hearts.
  4. The purpose of content is to educate, inspire, and engage. The purpose of content marketing is to convince your prospect to move from having the awareness to taking action.
  5. Be someone’s intern if you really want to learn from the best-of-the-best on social media. You will gain insider stories, see the whole process, and be in the front row when the engagement is happening.
  6. It is the presenter’s job to be interesting rather than the audience’s job to be interested in what you said. Hope is not a strategy. Identify the sticky information about you. Leave out the white noise. Keep it simple.
  7. Writing a book in 100 days is possible when you have a topic, an outline, and the discipline to break 100 days into 10 blocks of time. Think 10x10.
  8. A book is like your enlarged business card. It will be read and not get filed. It will be shared and not get stored somewhere. It is a springboard to other income streams.
  9. Convert your talks into a book. At 160 words per minute, a one-hour talk will be 10,000 words.
  10. The reason why video is so engaging on social media is that it appeals to three groups of people: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic.
  11. Use your voice. Your voice becomes the soul of your message when you have timbre. To enjoy global success, be the “one voice” others need to hear.
  12. Stepping into your bravest message may lead to massive exposure to people, media, and fame. Do not doubt yourself.
  13. The discovery of developing deep connections will help you to locate the roots of your inner influence that will stay intact and functional, even in the toughest times.

Where Do You Focus: Business Models and Revenue Opportunities

  1. If you want to develop the mindset and motivation to spot opportunities, take initiative, and embrace change. Think like an inventor. It is time to get creative, rethink, reframe, and retool.
  2. Two expressions leading to inventions: UGH = Problem sound. Oh = Clever idea to fix it.
  3. How to pitch for a gig using the PCT way: Problem - what's the burning problem? Credibility - why are you the right person? Transformation - what does the world look like after you deliver the goods?
  4. There is no point in trying to be a speaker if you are not good at it.
  5. Don’t trade time for money. You need to raise the leverage game by identifying multiple streams to lead your audience to greater success. Review how much you have earned from speaking, coaching, consultancy, books, etc. in the last 90 days.
  6. Sell your online course even if you have not started to create it. Build your tribe early; quality is more important than quality. Choose a platform that allows your students to interact and reflect on their learning long after they have finished your online courses.
  7. The future of learning and development is the future of leadership, culture, and processes. If you are naturally visionary, you need to look at the details now. If you are a natural perfectionist, you need to start looking at the big picture now.
  8. Focus on the new jobs of the future to determine new training needs analysis and skills gaps.
  9. We build a better world by linking our work to the big picture: value proposition, business model, and ecosystems.
  10. The five core foundations to powerful delivery: 1) rate of speech, 2) the right volume (5-6), 3) the pitch and melody of the talk, 4) your tonality, and 5) the pauses—they speak louder than your words sometimes and give the audience time to think.
  11. To improve your talk, record all the videos, and review them in three rounds. First, listen to the audio-only. Can you hear yourself clearly? Second, watch the silent footage to see your body language, facial expressions, and gestures. Third, transcribe them and look out for fillers, stop words, and repeated words.
  12. Showmanship + technical skills + production value are needed for success. Work like a speaker. Produce like a magician.
  13. “Be so good that others can’t ignore you.” – Steve Martin
  14. Luck = preparation + opportunity.

How Do You Do It? The Technology and Tools of Today’s Speaking Business

  1. The future is hybrid reality: virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality. The secret sauce is having mixed intelligences: social intelligence, emotional intelligence, artificial intelligence, and your own intelligence.
  2. How should speakers be marketing themselves in the next 18-24 months? Pick your lane. Know what the demand (pain) is out there. Have a unique position, prepare a fabulous speaker one-sheet, and start giving speeches (speak for free sometimes) to others to become a speaker whom everyone wants to hire.
  3. What kind of a speaker are you? A prophet? A profiler? A funnel? Or a mercenary? Focus on your message, not your method.
  4. The speaking business model is about merging your product, promotion, and profit together. The sweet spot is when you can achieve influence, impact, and income.
  5. Where relationships flourish, a powerful virtual community is formed. The same principle applies because behind the computers, people crave deep, intimate, and meaningful connections.
  6. Building virtual communities is not JUST about getting attention. Building virtual communities is not JUST about growing numbers. Building virtual communities is not JUST about being savvy about technologies.
  7. Know the different types of members in the community; they each serve a role and are very valuable.
  8. Every hero needs a sidekick. Every speaker needs a virtual assistant. Know who to hire. Know what to automate and what to delegate.
  9. A podcast is powerful because the content is easy to consume, it can easily go global, and it is infinite and intimate. It also lifts others easily and builds relationships. It can also be produced by repurposing other content.
  10. You can launch your first podcast in 30 days. Days 1 to 5: plan. Days 6-10: produce artwork and decide on the tools and technology you need. Days 11-16: record the first three episodes. Days 16 to 20: post-production with intro and outro. Days 21-25: upload. Days 26-30: begin marketing.
  11. Trainers must enlarge their virtual toolkits, not just to deliver great training but to deliver a great virtual learning experience.
  12. “Instead of asking people to share their reflection of a lesson, give them time to write a script instead. Make it into a short one or two-minute video with music and a caption. It produces powerful personal reflection and retention from the rest of the participants. They learn more about how to articulate themselves and a new video tool.” –
  13. Every trainer needs to make their workshop into a show. Streamyard is able to bring a group presentation into a talk show where the presenting group becomes a panel and the rest become the audience. It interacts on social media and adds creativity and flair to your training.
  14. Gamification and leader boards make training fun. Collaborative discussion tools make training insightful. Knowing how to pace and space them out will make your virtual workshop lively. Consider using quizzizz, jamboard, mindmup, and even G-suite tools.
  15. Virtual Engagement and business models are not just about using technology; they are about leveraging it to be more efficient. The effectiveness of delivery will still need to depend on the presenters. It is both an art and a science.

Who You Are: Your Mindset and Potential

  1. Life is about what we can do for others. Focusing on someone you can help sows the seeds of growth. Asking, “How can I help?” is the beginning of giving.
  2. Self-leadership begins with self-love, self-acceptance, and self-awareness.
  3. Leading from within means following your compass of passion, mission, genius, and value. Find your location. Determine your action. Focus on your mission.
  4. The art of suffering is to tell yourself every morning to start strong, stay steady, and end well.
  5. To know whom you can help, do these three things: Ask yourself, “What do I need to hear now?” Know that what you say to yourself matters. Lastly, give yourself a lovely label.
  6. The collective genius of a mastermind group is to gather seven to nine people whom you look up to and challenge each other to get better. Topics and format may differ. Learn to ask each other for help.
  7. Even if you are the organizer of a mastermind group, you should not be the only one speaking. Learn to be an observer, and come ready to serve. Be a facilitator and a timekeeper. Think collectively; don’t take control.
  8. Service is care in action. We need to create a generative responsibility. What are we going to do with the rest of our lives? When all of us take personal responsibility, we create shared responsibilities.

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  • Kiely Shaw

    Thank you for these amazing tips

  • Mike Henry

    Self leadership starts with a positive attitude

  • Joanne Tupper

    This was incredibly helpful

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Andrew Chow 

Digital Marketing Expert

Andrew Chow is a successful social media and public relations strategist, entrepreneur and speaker based in Singapore. He is also the best-selling author of a highly popular series of books: Social Media 247, Public Relations 247 and Personal Branding 247. Andrew has spoken in over 15 countries within 5 years and addressed more than 20,000 people on Digital Marketing, Personal Branding, Enneagram, Public Relations and Branding. Andrew’s career of 30 years; has seen him work with an array of clients including AXA Insurance, Abbot Medical Optics, Singtel and Sony Pictures, M1, Starhub, and Sennheiser. Andrew had more than 300 interviews and features about him or his business since 2005 from more than 40 local and regional media. He is listed as the Top 10 Most Influential Speaker in Singapore in 2013 by the Singapore Business Review. He won the Spirit of Enterprise in 2008 and the Successful Entrepreneur in 2010. Before he served as the President of the Asia Professional Speakers – Singapore (APSS), he also won the coveted Spirit of Service Award from the Industry. He loves travelling and held his solo Photo Art Exhibition for 3 days in Singapore to raise funds for a charity – Teen Challenge. Andrew is known by the moniker @ideasandrew in all his social media platforms.


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