I just returned from NYC where I participated in the “Steal the Show” masterclass by Michael Port and Amy Meade.

This year’s focus for my own personal development is upping my game in speaking engagements.

What I learned is much more powerful.

While I learned how to cull down messages and make key points, watching the brave souls who bared it all on stage is where my real lessons came from.

lessons learned

As part of the masterclass, four people were given the opportunity to deliver their keynote speech and receive one on one coaching and feedback from the experts in performance.

I learned that:

  • It’s hard to change something you have been doing for a long time. It may seem like a no-brainer, but it was fascinating to watch it in action. The feedback and suggestions were heard and then supposed to be implemented, and sometimes it took several tries for many of the specific actions to be incorporated.
  • Practice is critical to master anything. I’ve preached about prep and practice for 18 years now. I was recommitted to the need for this. While so many people are afraid that it will kill spontaneity, Michael shared that spontaneity comes when you are so well-rehearsed and practiced that you are really present with the other person or people and can adjust in the moment to capture something powerful.
  • Listening to someone who is vested in your performance is smart. Even the most successful athletes, entertainers, and business professionals have advisors, mentors, and coaches. Seek out those smarter, more successful, and networked than you to stay on top of your game.

Are these life lessons or business lessons? I think these three fall into the category of both.