Relevance is Not Enough

Relevance and PassionIt only gets people in the door.

It’s like having a high school kid spin a ‘50% off everything’ sign in front of a run-down store. You like to save money, so you decide to stop. Then, you find out that the store is mangled and the inventory is weak. The owner clearly doesn’t give a hoot. Will you buy anything?

That’s what its like when a leader without passion invites you to his or her world. You’re attracted by the idea of ‘saving the baby seals’ or ‘conquering the world of widgets.’ The vision is relevant to you in some way, so you give it a shot.

Then you get in, realize that the operation is a mess, and bail.

Give a Hoot. Actually, Give Several Hoots.

Passion is the element that stimulates connection and arouses emotions. It’s the fire that you’re trying to spread. When you stand in front of a room full of people and unapologetically bare your soul, you tear down walls. You connect.

Sure, half of the room will think you’re crazy and walk out unaffected. Don’t worry about them. They aren’t who you were trying to reach. The folks who stay in the room are the ones who come alive when you share your vision. They’re ready to go to battle with you.

Congratulations, you’ve earned their emotional buy-in.

Emotional What?

Emotional buy-in. It’s that magical connection that’s made when a little piece of your listener is sold on your vision. This is painfully essential to developing any sort of leadership influence. You don’t get the opportunity to lead until they discover the desire to follow.

This is dangerous. When people buy into your vision, they buy into you. Don’t you dare let them down by portraying yourself to be someone you’re not. This isn’t about satisfying your ego. If you don’t truly believe in what you’re saying, then don’t say it.

Thoughts on Conveying Passion

Here are some closing thoughts on passion in a neat little package:

  • Purpose – What do you stand for? You need to be able to communicate that effectively and poignantly.
  • Action – What are we going to do? Don’t be a leader of simply words. Get out and do something.
  • Soul – Why do you care? What do you feel? Don’t be afraid to wear your heart on your sleeve here. This is where connection is born.
  • Steadfastness – Will you break when things get tough? Your passion is defined by your willingness to do what it takes.
  • Intensity – How important is this thing? Don’t be afraid to get loud. Remember, half of the room will think you’re off your rocker. The other half will fall in love with you.
  • Opinion – Are you afraid to offend? If you’re standing for social change, you’re going to rub some people the wrong way. Don’t let that stop you.
  • Nerve – How bold can you be? Tomorrow, I’m going to write about the topic of boldness and why it is an absolutely essential trait for any great leader.

Stick around, subscribe, and we’ll dig into that tomorrow.

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