You conversation or presentation, like a house, needs a strong foundation.
In San Francisco there is a skyscraper housing offices and Million Dollar Pus condo that is slowly sinking because the foundation was not done correct. In New Orleans, built in swampland, there is the tallest building in the state that has survived multiple hurricanes because they went 500 feet down to build the foundation on bedrock. Foundation matters when building, not just building but your conversations and presentations as well.
The good news is that anyone can learn to build a strong foundation for their conversations. The key is taking the time to create clear and concise answers to the three questions everyone wants to know: where are you going, what do you stand for, and what can you be relied upon for. When you can answer these three questions you are prepared with a solid foundation for any conversation you find yourself in.
People want to know if they want to go to the same place you are going, here at heroic voice we call this knowing your vision. In every conversation and presentation you have to be able to vividly take a snapshot of the future you are working towards so your audience can decide if they want to get to the same place.
Once they know they want to go where you are going, then they need to know if they connect with the things you stand for, or your values. Clearly expressing your values is the second part of the foundation for all conversations and ensures your audiences they are in alignment with you and what you stand for.
The final piece of a solid foundation is expressing your vows, the thing the audience knows they can count on from you. If they are going to partner with you in any way, be it as a client, as someone to support you or as someone to speak highly of you to others, they want to know you will do what you vow to do.
When you have developed the ability to answer these three questions, clearly express your vision, values and vows, you have built a strong foundation for any high stakes conversation you find yourself in.