These are the notes I wrote on the board for our student staff meeting today.

I was reminding them of what I think are some key principles when connecting with all the visitors we encounter every day.

  • Make the audience the hero – It’s not about you. Put yourself in the mindset of those you’re speaking to. How can they come out of this encounter better and happier?
  • Style & substance – Offer more than charm and wit. Your style needs to support meaningful content, not just entertain superficially.
  • What’s your gift? – Don’t stand before an audience wondering what you can get from them – laughs, applause, approval.  Instead, focus on what you can give to your audience. What value can you add to those you encounter?
  • Do less, better – Focus on the essentials. Cut the excess, even good stuff, to shine a brighter light on what’s most important.
  • Be impeccable – Aim for perfection. Be careful with even small details. Get it right. Keep pushing yourself to constantly improve.
  • Shine! – Don’t be afraid to be awesome. Be bold and confident.

These are notes to my staff, but they’re just as much notes to myself. I need to be reminded regularly to not be content with good enough. Why not be extraordinary?