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Leading So People Will Follow by Erika Andersen

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Speaking in Terms That Engage the Audience

I once had the uncomfortable experience of being in the room while a CEO addressed a group of her junior employees in a way that was almost completely unintelligible to them. They were young people, mostly entry level and mostly just out of school, and this executive was talking about the need to build a better story about the company’s future for the Wall Street analysts on the next quarterly market call. Her audience wanted to understand, and they wanted to be engaged—in fact, they felt honored that the president was spending this time with them—but as she droned on and on, I could see them starting to glaze over and get restless. She was talking at them rather than to them, indulging in a monologue ...

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