Surviving and thriving through changes to thought leadership modality.
An interview with Nick Morgan and Joseph Michelli that originally aired on February 9th, 2021, as part of our Leveraging Thought Leadership Live series on LinkedIn.
During the last two years, speakers, consultants, and thought leaders have moved their presentations from in-person formats into relatively unknown digital space. Now, as we settle back into a face-to-face workplace, we look back and consider the lessons learned from online experiences. What would a new, hybrid style look like?
What better way to investigate these topics than to talk with two doctors, who are both experts in their fields!
Dr. Nick Morgan is one of America’s top communication theorists and coaches. He is also a keynote speaker and author who helps people bring clarity to their great ideas.
Dr. Joseph Michelli is a consultant, psychologist, professional speaker, and New York Times Bestselling author. He’s been voted a Top 5 Global Guru in Customers Service for more than 7 years!
We start by laying the foundation: discussing what the standard business model looked like, pre-pandemic. Then, we move forward, and explore how each of our guests found ways to deliver great experiences virtually. We talk about their successes, and the hardships they struggled to overcome — such as developing trust and transparency through a computer screen.
The future of keynote speaking and conferences is still uncertain, and many thought leaders are exploring “hybrid” models, moving fluidly between in-person and remote presentations. Nick and Joseph discuss how they believe things will continue to play out, giving examples in the ways their businesses were returning to the “old normal,” and how they continue to incorporate digital modalities.
While this interview took place some months ago, the advice on how to build trust with a virtual audience is evergreen!
Three Key Takeaways:
- Virtual relationships can get clogged up and degrade over time – whenever possible renew that relationship in person.
- If you are going to make video work you have to go deep fast. Forge a strong relationship right out of the gate by being honest, trustworthy, and transparent.
- Virtual speaking means having to grab the audience’s attention in the first 90 seconds. Speakers who don’t have some form of interaction are missing a trick for their toolbox.
If you need a strategy to bring your thought leadership to market, Thought Leadership Leverage can assist you! Contact us for more information. In addition, we can help you implement marketing, research, and sales. Let us help you so you can devote yourself to what you do best.
Peter Winick And welcome, welcome, welcome. This is Peter Winick. I’m the founder and CEO of Thought Leadership Leverage, and you’re joining us on our LinkedIn Live, which is an extension of the podcast, which is Leveraging Thought Leadership.
Peter Winick So I want to introduce to two folks that happen to be doctors. But we’re not a medical show today. Let me start with Joseph Michelli. If you don’t know his work, you should. He is an in-person and virtual speaker, a leadership engagement, customer experience, customer loyalty and consumer advocacy. He’s a New York Times best seller many, many times over. Some of his books are the Airbnb Way to Delight the Starbucks way. The Zappos experience I just was asking would not tell me what his next book is. I will have to wait and be quiet when it comes out like I always do. But his books are amazing.
Peter Winick And then my second guest is Dr. Nick Morgan from up in Boston. So he is also an author. He’s one of America’s top communication theorists and coaches. He has coached many, many folks on the Fortune 500, both giving testimonial at Congress, as well as The Today Show and many other places. And he’s very, very, very, very well known in the speaker community. Everybody always says, if a speaker needs help, you got to call the doctor. And that is Nick. Anyway, thank you both for coming on board today.
Nick Morgan Pleasure.
Joseph Michelli I just wish I had hired Nick before I did the show today. That’s all I got.
Peter Winick There’s always after?
Joseph Michelli Yes. He’s going to do a postmortem on my performance.
Nick Morgan I got notes. I got notes.
Peter Winick We’ve got autopsies. He’s the Quincy, M.D. of the speaker world. So let’s start with you, Joseph, your – your sort of business model was fairly predictable pre-COVID. Write a book every couple of, you know, embed yourself in a company. Write a book based on that experience. Put in the hard work. Put in the effort. And then you were out there very, very often speaking not just about the latest book, but about your general experiences and what’s the same and what’s different.
Joseph Michelli Well, so I was on that path right when COVID hit. I was going to do a book about Godiva chocolate. It was going to be there. That was in the 94th year of their existence. It was going to come out in their 95th year. Everything closed down. Their high street locations were closing down as they were going head-to-head against Starbucks. And I couldn’t get to the plant. So as a consultant in this space, clients of mine that were having all kinds of challenges trying to lead. And so I just started asking them, how are you surviving this? And how are you delivering great experiences to your people and your customers? In 140 interviews later, we had a book. And so rather than pursuing my typical formula, I pivoted my formula to leverage the insights of my leader community to be able to get them to speak to a book called Stronger Through Adversity, which was published. And it’s wonderful for me because it has the CEOs of Verizon and Target and all these great brands who engage in the conversation, and then they became promoters of the book.
Peter Winick Sure.
Joseph Michelli That was a different formula for me. I never really had that happen.
Peter Winick And that book, not only did you pivot the theme of the book, but that company book came out lightning fast with respect to typical publishing cycles.
Joseph Michelli Amen, I mean, first we wrote it fast, right? So we were doing interviews and writing the book and then moving interviews around. It was it was definitely crazy. And then the publishers agreed to get it out in 2020. So we did that book throughout the early part of 2020. Publishing cycle was reduced down from, say, a six month publishing cycle to about, I think three months or two months. It was amazing and it came out was very well received and very –
Peter Winick Yeah.
Joseph Michelli Now people are tired of talking about it, but at the time people were still trying to figure out how to manage it.
Peter Winick Right. I think it’ll it’ll be one of those books that people look back on in five years as sort of a period piece. What was the pulse of the of the leadership of the universe at a moment in time, right? Yeah.
Joseph Michelli So I hope so.
Peter Winick Yeah. Nick, what’s new and what’s the same in your world? What are you. Because you’re sort of the. Centerpiece of the.
Nick Morgan Yeah. From the the speaking world, as it did at 911 and as it did in 2008-2009, shut down. And I, like a lot of others, had six months bookings that just vanished. I’ll never forget, I was sitting in Calgary. Airport. Getting ready to take a flight home after seeing a client. And I was getting these texts and email messages saying, cancel, cancel, cancel. What’s going on? I’d heard of COVID at that point, as was February, but it didn’t seem like it would be that big a deal. We were still thinking, Oh, a couple of weeks it’ll be done.
Peter Winick Right. Sure.
Nick Morgan As we all know, it didn’t quite work out that way, but the business end picked itself up and went virtual. But the virtual has been a sort of a pale imitation of the real life in-person one. There are fewer of the many, many conferences just postponed. And and it still hasn’t come back yet. Where it’s an industry that depends on the courage of attendees, the attendees have to feel safe en masse. And then, of course, then there have to be there has to be money in the budget to to pay for the travel and that kind of thing. So there are a number of things that are going to have to get rolling again. And it’s a big flywheel. Business is going to take a while to get that flywheel going again, but it will come back.
Peter Winick And so when you say welcome back, I want to sit there for a moment because, you know, everybody’s got an opinion. But it’s interesting to me in that the longer we’ve been without events, a couple of things have changed that we’ve been without it anything. We’ve get acclimated to remote work and all these things that we’re quarantines, remote learning, etc., etc. And now it’s like, Yeah, remote work. It’s just work that’s just not done at the same proximity, right? So you know, and you put it nicely back in terms of, you know, the faith or whatever that attendees have, I don’t know that when that switch goes back on, if it’s so binary, because I think one of the things that we’ve learned is if the average mid-level executive at a Fortune 1000 was going to it doesn’t events a year we’ve learned that this is a great format to exchange information to present to give out ideas. It’s kind of lousy for connection and community. So there’ll probably be a spike in, Oh my God, I want to get out of the house, will be spring break, whatever. But I think the economics, it’s going to be harder to make the business case. I think internally organizations of people also want to go to 13 events this year. Yeah.
Nick Morgan Yeah, sure. I mean, I think it’s hard to predict at this point. Anybody who says they know exactly what’s going to happen is a whole lot smarter than I am or a whole lot more willing to B.S. you. I would say it’s clear we’re going to have some sort of dual market and maybe the top end conferences and the top end get togethers will stay. And some of the sort of more routine ones, let’s put it that way, will shake out and become virtual. I choose to see it as an opportunity. I was talking about this with a with a buddy just the other day, and he was remembering fondly, having once jumped on an airplane and taken a 30 hour plane trip, roundtrip plane ride to do a one hour meeting. And we were saying, yeah, those days are gone. And then as we thought about it, we thought, well, on the other hand, if you did that, that would send an incredible message of why this is really important to me to do this thing. And so now we have we have these two tiers. We have routine meetings that let’s just do a short film. And then we have these the face-to-face opportunity, which suddenly becomes a bigger deal. So I see it as an expanding pie in the long run. But in the short run, it sure doesn’t feel that way to speakers and meeting planners.
Peter Winick As we look at another sort of upside or differentiation, I wanted to get your take on this, Joseph. Is that well, now for putting on an event, the default is hybrid. At a minimum, it’s not remote. It will never be all in person. Now that we’ve learned the hybrid piece, why not do that? And that allows organizations to increase reach. Right now, we could say, let’s invite everyone in Europe. Let’s invite everyone all over the place. It doesn’t have to be a top 300 or whatever to get the message. How are you seeing sort of speakers react to that, saying, hey, give us a lot more of your stuff for the same money or more people get to hear the message. How are you?
Joseph Michelli I just I guess I’m in a different reality. I mean, I didn’t speak much during 2020 and 2021. Those were all virtual, right? I mean, that was definitely the world I lived in. But it’s not been that way for me since I’m a mid, mid 20, 21. I did five days straight with 500 people in an audience for an organization. Last week I was in Dallas and did 2200 Dennis and I’ll be in Orlando this weekend. And two weeks from that I’m in Nashville and I’m just not feeling it. I mean, I do believe that there is a decrease in the market for this, and I think there’s value in having all of our meetings that we can on virtual. But I think organizations and just having pent up demand for your point.
Peter Winick Yeah.
Joseph Michelli So there’s that there’s that possibility. But I also think people are starting to say we’re going to figure out how to cope with this. We’re traveling for all kinds of other reasons. We are reasonably vaccinated across the country. There’s a sense that we’re not as likely to die from COVID as we were at one point in the short. And so to me, I just I’m not that I like having the option to say to an organization, look, I your budget isn’t what it needs to be for you to hire me to do a keynote. But I can give you a virtual and I can show you that it has impact and positive stuff. So, I’m opening up some markets where I get to stay at home that I probably would not have priced into in the old days. And I still get a sufficient amount of other events that makes it worthwhile to get on a plane.
Peter Winick So I like to just sort of done a two-tier piece because what was interesting is, you know, as a keynote or as a speaker, everyone used to talk about their rate. Oh, that’s great. You know, I get, you know, whatever, 15, 25, $50,000 for a gig and it’s 45 minutes. Except when you live in Seattle and the events in Orlando, exactly three days of your life that you’re only getting paid for that 45 minutes. So I do love this. Okay. If you want me in person, that’s great. I prefer that. I love it. There’s nothing that replaces that connection. But that’s going to cause this, if you like, remotely with a couple of disclaimers. It’s not even a change, but it’s pretty damn good. And by the way, it might be a fraction of the price, but actually opens a different market for you without cannibalizing the other side of that. So I kind of like that as an approach and we are seeing that I think in the beginning and early or second quarter 2020, nobody knew what to do. It was like, oh, you know, a lot of speaker friends of literally $1,000,000 worth of business vaporized in hours. And now you had 30,000 speakers doing things for 2000. I think the dust is starting to settle in terms of where that goes because it was a little bit frantic. I wonder, do you remember that, you know, a lot of your work is on the speech writing, the coaching, sort of the delivery, the physical, whatever. And I saw that some interesting thing where some of that is that the keynote has a sense of the, you know, everything they get the music when they come in, the vibe that they’re creating, when they walk in, how to anchor themselves, the physicality and all that went out the window. There’s none of those. Well, I can say that most of those things aren’t valid. We’re all living in a box of strangers. So what kind of work have you done to help people to sort of master this modality, this them?
Nick Morgan Well, as it happened, I got interested the topic about six years ago, six or seven years ago, because I was starting to get the question as I went around the world speaking about body language and storytelling and those kind of things. I’d finished my speech and the first question, somebody shoot the hand up right away and be ready for this and say, Well, Nick, this stuff about body language is really interesting. Thanks for that. But I have a team that’s based in in India and California and France. I never see them. So how does this body language communicate or work over or over the virtual thing? So before the pandemic, people were asking that question and my first reaction was, well. It doesn’t. And I thought, I’m supposed to be an expert in communications. That’s not a good enough response. So. So I started.
Peter Winick So is not one of the typical answers.
Nick Morgan It’s not a good one. No, it’s not my best shot.
Peter Winick Note to self.
Nick Morgan Yeah, note to self. Although it may – a little fun little factoid. Huh is the only universally understood word, lets say or sound, in any language. So.
Peter Winick Huh.
Nick Morgan Yeah. So that one will get you – in any language. Yeah. Good job. Yeah. So anyway, I did the research and I wrote a book that came out in 2018 called. Can you hear me? Yeah. Nobody wanted to buy it because nobody was using video communications much. Right. The numbers may surprise you. 5% or 10,000 companies were using video conferencing on a regular basis.
Peter Winick Because it was awful.
Joseph Michelli Yeah, right.
Nick Morgan It was like, why do it when you can be in person? And so that all suddenly switched in 2020. And the one bit of good news for me was the book started selling and people started asking the questions about it. But what I found in my research was that it’s impoverished, not a huge surprise to those of us who’ve been doing it for the last two years. It’s impoverished a number of ways. And so, the question became, how do you fill that up and how do you make that more satisfying? And the book is full of lots of tips on ways to do that. But on the whole, you know, my best advice was if you could start a relationship in person, do it. If you can renew a relationship over time in person. Do it because the every virtual relationship gets clogged up and gradually degrades over time because of the little misunderstandings that happen in two dimensions and on the phone and that kind of thing. And so, it’s just it’s not the perfect medium, but it’s good enough. And that’s the point. And that’s what Joseph is saying, is it’s good enough for some things. And that’s what you’re arguing. So, we have this another string to our bow now. That’s a good thing.
Peter Winick Yeah. I think that’s and I think there’s also been. How would I put it that there’s this equalization maybe of introvert to extrovert. Right. So, there’s people that master the room, the people that have a maybe a big physical presence or present a big physical presence. And they do that. And then, you know, I have a lot of speaker clients, shockingly, that are amazingly introvert. You know, put them up in front of a stage of 500 people. No problem. Tell them we’re going to the cocktail party with the client the night before. Not happening, break out in hives, whatever. And I think there’s a little bit of maybe it’s because we’re all working from home a little bit more comfort. There were folks that might have been quieter have come into their own on this format. I don’t know if any of you have experienced that as well, Joseph.
Joseph Michelli Well, I think it calls for more transparency. I mean, you know, I work with a lot of CEOs who were they were communicating from the boardroom most of their life with because of all of the, you know, the ivory and walnut. And now they’re communicating from their bedroom. So suddenly there’s this this transparency and vulnerability that happens. And we’re all on an equal footing other than whatever our titles say. We’re all looking at pretty much the same in this format. So, I do think it has created a different.
(Brief loss of internet connection on Zoom)
Peter Winick He’s keeping us in suspense.
Joseph Michelli We were lost. Well, you and I, both of you and I just demonstrated the challenges of this technology. Peter, you disappeared. I guess Nick was, again, the communication expert. He stayed on when we were completely incommunicado.
Nick Morgan Me and Verizon were just like this.
Joseph Michelli It’s all about the I think it’s the tower.
Peter Winick If you’re enjoying this episode of Leveraging Thought Leadership, please make sure to subscribe. If you’d like to help spread the word about our podcast, please leave us a review and share it with your friends. We’re available on Apple Podcasts and on all major listening apps as well as at ThoughtLeadershipLeverage.com/podcasts.
Peter Winick So you know, at some level we all need to run the business providing value to our clients. That’s what we do. That’s what we get paid for. We have very, very different domain expertise and experiences and potentially different clients. And I think a lot of this is forced all of us to reexamine the how the how we didn’t really go. Well, if you’re a consultant, you jump on a plane, you work with your client. If you’re a speaker, coach obviously is going to do that in person because that’s a physical component of your owner. Obviously, that’s what you’re going to do. And I think it’s been really interesting. I’ve been calling it sort of the Covid Renaissance, where everybody’s had to recreate, rethink, and the world’s giving us permission to experiment and not a requirement works. But how are you guys? Sort of. Processing that.
Nick Morgan You know, I found one thing actually works better on Zoom or video conferencing of choice. And that was when I worked start to work with a client on the content of a speech. It used to be pre-pandemic. We’d get together for a day and then we try to jam it all in in that day. And then of course, we’d work on the idea afterwards and over a period of weeks, pass drafts back and forth. So we got to the place we loved. But what we found on Zoom, doing the same thing on Zoom was we were going to go a whole day. Nobody wants to do it. 8 hours on Zoom. That would be awful. But what we did instead was we do an hour and a half something like that and then come back the next day and do another hour and a half. And what we found was sleeping on it, having that extra time actually led to better ideas and richer thoughts and interesting tangents. And and the client would come up with a story that he or she hadn’t thought of before. And so that result actually was a plus and gives us now a new option, a new way to work.
Peter Winick So funny that you say that because we do our initial work with clients is typically there’s a bunch of pre work, but the big piece of it is spending a day together. And obviously when you’re traveling, you know, you want to get the most theoretically the most into that day. You’re not going to spend four days and do a quarter daytimes. All right. I thought the way we were, we were working, but we do it the way we do. And we found there’s a lot of power in that pause. Right. And saying, you know what? 3 hours on Zoom is about Max. To do what used to be a day and whiteboarding. You’re not dealing with the carb load after lunch open to that usually be honestly be clapping whatever and I think that sleeping on it and it might take a little bit longer to get an engagement done, but I think the outcomes are a little better. Both of you were going to say I might.
Joseph Michelli On the consulting side, my day started today with a client from South Africa. I would not have consulted with a client in South Africa in the past because my model was so narrow, a time zone was an issue, and the way I thought about how I consulted would have meant I didn’t go to South Africa. I know I’ve been to South Africa. I love going to South Africa, but not unless the client’s really well prepared for some pretty expensive stuff. And then I still worry that we’re not going to get deep enough into it. And I just didn’t believe that we could create value as much as we do now through this media. So it’s forced us to rethink our workflows probably in a lot of different ways and who and how we can have that.
Peter Winick You know, I think it’s a self-limiting belief, to some degree, right? Because I think most of us, whether by design or not, are sort of following the sun. Right. So my early calls to start in Europe and then Europe, blah, blah, blah. Whereas before, you know, if you’re traveling all the time, it’s just not possible financially, physically without investing and all that.
Nick Morgan Yeah, I mean, I think the opportunity on Zoom to or on video conferencing, I’m using Zoom as a verb like everybody else. But I don’t mean to imply a brand endorsement is if you’re going to make it work on video conferencing, you’ve got to go fast, deep. You got to make a strong connection right out of the gate. And I think that’s actually changed. Or. Improved in some ways the way consultants like me work, because, you know, when you’re in person, it’s natural enough to start with sort of chit chat, get to know you stuff and you can easily blow 45 minutes over coffee and just talking about the weather and Boston are magnificent sports teams but what’s.
Joseph Michelli That will take a Yankee fan so that’ll take at least two or 3 minutes I would imagine.
Nick Morgan I just thought I’d throw that in there, to get your goat. But yeah, but what’s actually happening there is not the chit chat. What’s happening is the two bodies, two people or the several people involved are sending out non-verbal signals to each other. Do I trust this person? Can I work with this person? They’re starting to build a bond. And so, the chit chat is the least important part of that. Now, the question is, what do you replace that with when you get on Zoom? And the answer is, you’ve got to do that work verbally. You’ve got to go deep with questions and honesty and transparency. And I think that’s turned out to be a good thing. I think for me, speaking for myself, I’m learning new ways to work that get to the point faster and go and go deeper than I would have had to.
Peter Winick Sure.
Nick Morgan – in person.
Peter Winick And I think there’s a level of luck rather than a non-fun way. The depth, you know, so, so a lot of coding, not all, but elements of many keynotes and to some extent all of them keynotes were more on the entertainment side. Oh, tell me more stories. What was it like when you were in the Olympics or how high? Here comes the joke and all that sort of stuff. There’s really no patience for that or need for that sort of the entertainment exclusivity side of that. Like we can all watch Netflix, Google streaming stuff all the time. So it doesn’t mean I don’t want you to be fun or engaging or whatever, but get to it like I want to I want to just an hour with you. What am I going to take away? What am I going to learn? What am I going to understand from this versus what you just saw? Whatever an Olympic skier or all my ski that that’s like. It’s a great story. No disrespect to them. That entertainment side of the house, I think there’s less of a demand for that.
Joseph Michelli I think that’s brilliant. I hate to give you that, Peter, but it really is, because.
Nick Morgan We can go now. Thank you. Thank you.
Joseph Michelli You know, if you think about it, we’re all kind of like doing movies, little, little Internet movies right now. And so if I watch you on a live stream or if I watch you on a video that you prepare or I watch a video of your speech, it’s all the same, really, in some way. We’re watching the screen. And the beauty of a live event is you’re in the presence of these people and you can say, hey, I was I was with them. And look at my selfie with them. I mean, taking a screenshot of the three of us together is not quite the same as us getting that money shot at an event. And so I think it causes this to turn out to be a little bit detached, like you’re watching something outside of your body. And I think that that’s not what you want in an event. So figuring out how do you how do you pull it in? How do you kind of make some kind of real human connection? It’s hard. It is really hard. And that’s why I’m not giving up hope on the need for humanity to have live events and there is going to be a return of it mitigated by all the concerns we have for an endemic virus.
Peter Winick So, Nick, to your point, where you got to sort of get to it quicker, I can tell you that you’ve got hundreds of stories of speakers spending months working on that opening, that first 90 seconds of this, the story and the music and what’s the image on the PowerPoint or whatever. It’s not so much a hook, but how do you get me to lean in and sort of go, Oh, this is going to be a good hour? This is like, what do you sing that from a from a speech writing standpoint or delivery? How do you how do you hook me early?
Nick Morgan Well, of course, the power of storytelling is never going to go away, and storytelling works in two dimensions as well as three. I think, though, that the really the best way to bring in a virtual audience is to engage them, is to get them doing something. And I think speakers are missing a trick if they don’t have some form of interaction. There are all kinds of ways that that can get complicated, in ways it can be done well and badly, this sort of thing. But what I found at what I’ve seen my clients do when they when they get some genuine interaction going and that pulls people in and holds them there, whereas if you’re just preaching at them, then you’re just another URL, you’re competing with YouTube, you know, and I can click right over to that. Or Internet shopping. I can click over Amazon.
Peter Winick You an example or two, because it’s so easy in the ballroom thing to say, Hey, go to your neighbor and ask them this, you know, break out photo. You know, why don’t you discuss how you would answer this question or how have you seen that objectively in the zoom as a verbal.
Nick Morgan Well, I use an example that I’ve used, which is in talking about virtual communications, I’ll say to people, How many of you have sent the email, good job, nice job or great job. Everybody sent that email. So, I always get 100% response. So that’s nice. That gets get some clicking or they find the pull button or whatever they need to do. So, they’re engaged. And then I say, Would it interest you to know that 60% of the time that email or text in the virtual world is taken as sarcastic? Right. So, when I said that, I used to use that example, 2018, 2019, talking about my book in person and I get an audible gasp. Now, speaking selfishly as the speaker, I really missed that audible gasp. That was a lot of. Oh, that was a good save for me. Yeah. Thanks. Yeah, I appreciate it. But what I get instead is an engagement from people because they really want to understand that it doesn’t make sense. Like, how could anybody misunderstand that simple two-word email. “Nice job.” How could you possibly read that as anything but nice job. And then? So then I’ll get the response of the question and the commentary, and then I’ll say, Well, roll your eyes and say it. Nice job. That changes it instantly. And they start to get it. And then they realize start to realize the power of nonverbal communication and the danger of communication that doesn’t have that envelope of human intent, the wrapping of human pen around it. So, if I just send you words, you don’t know what to make of.
Peter Winick But if I were to say to you, nice job, whether it’s on the phone or over Zoom, you would know clearly if I was being sarcastic or offensive.
Nick Morgan Yeah, pretty much. Yeah. I mean, there’s some ways you’d get in the details if you want to, but there’s some ways in which even on Zoom or even on video conferencing, the signals are muted. They’re not quite as clear.
Peter Winick Sure.
Nick Morgan You’re when you take a three-dimensional face and turn it into two dimensions, then I don’t see quite as much of the facial expression as I do in person. That’s one thing. Another thing is your voice is narrowed down to. The. Frequency response of your voice. So I’m not getting as many of those warm overtones and undertones and on and on. We could talk about the technical details. I love to geek out on that stuff.
Joseph Michelli But I mean, I think there were so many lessons in that. Mix that up, though. I mean, first, these asking people how many of you write so it’s to invite into the forum. And then he did the next cool iteration of it, right? So, he goes from how many of you to you might be interested in know it? And it’s just an invitation to peek into and it takes the interest of it. Given that this is a reality for you, you might be interested. And there’s a pause to that which says, Yeah, I am. Okay, now let’s go forward and let me pull the switch on you, which causes you to go off like, oh my gosh, I didn’t mean that to have that impact. You know, I do very similar. You know, one of the things we talk about is are you stronger through this adversity? And on a scale of 0 to 10, just put in the comments a number that tell me where you’re at. And I’m kind of just scrolling the content there and I’m seeing a lot of seven. I’m seeing a lot of eight. There are a couple of people who are in the twos. Right. You know, for some of you must have felt like you’re just holding on to get through the round and others of you actually believe you’re going to come through this stronger. And now I’m speaking to both parts of the like. I’m getting a little bit of a sense of where the audience is. And I’m speaking to different parts of the audience and trying to say, I see you, I see you.
Peter Winick Aren’t you also getting a sense, Joseph, of well I did this three times last week, and the averages are in the eight – this groups in the fourth. Wow. They’re feeling it more. And you might not say that out loud. You woohoo.
Joseph Michelli Yeah. And it may soften my approach. But I think the really in the downside but I think the point is it’s not going in and saying, hey, let me tell you how you could be stronger through adversity. And it’s that sense of I’m curious, I’m interested. So, if you want if I want you to be interested in me, I don’t need to be interesting. I need to be interesting.
Peter Winick Yeah, I love it.
Nick Morgan I think that’s absolutely right. Yes. It’s the idea that people want to be seen. They want to be heard. And we’ve all been isolated to a greater or lesser extent during the during the pandemic. And so that need to be seen as a human being as only grown. And so I love Joseph’s way of interacting and asking people how they are. So you get a sense of the. Of the audience.
Peter Winick That’s very cool. So, as we start to wrap here because we’re running out of time, I’d love to get some thoughts from each of you on what you’re excited about for the rest of this year. What’s most exciting to you and most?
Joseph Michelli I already spoke with you, Peter. The year is done, man. I have nothing left to look forward to. Terrible. Go ahead, Nick. This new, exciting life ahead.
Nick Morgan Well, it’s like you. It’s mostly done. But as of today but yeah, I just launched a networking hub for speakers and we’re starting very small and try to grow it very organically. But for me, that was a way of replacing some of the comradery and fun I had out in the road. Road, essentially half the time. Pre-pandemic. And so, I realize that speakers will have a lot of questions right now about what the future is going to look like, and then they just have a need to interact with each other. We always say that the speaker is the most alone, the loneliest extrovert on the planet because you give the speech the end of the day, then you’re in your hotel room. And unless you plan things out really, really well, you’re sitting there with a bottle of wine and greasy pizza watching a movie you probably didn’t really care that much about. So that’s the speaker’s life. It’s alternately wildly extroverted and then introverted, and we have to deal with that cycle. So, networking among speakers can really help with that. So, I’m excited. About that. And I’m starting a new book.
Peter Winick Of course, when’s that coming out?
Nick Morgan Oh, 2023, maybe 24. A lot of research to do.
Joseph Michelli So I’ve thought of an answer now, Peter. I think as I said before. But so I am really starting to think about product sizing now. I mean, because my model has always been very labor intensive for me. Either I’m keynoting, I’m consulting, or I’m writing the book. Those are the things I got. The book is at least a multiplier of my writing weekly blog, so that’s another intensive process. So, I’m really starting to figure out how do I take all this stuff I’ve created over my career and start compartmentalizing it into products that I can try to figure out a market to sell to online? And I’m excited about just making that transition.
Peter Winick But we should definitely talk, as that’s how I spend most of the hours and most of my days helping people think that through. From the strategic perspective.
Nick Morgan I would like to just to do it for me, if you wouldn’t mind. Personally,
Joseph Michelli It’s a lot easier that way.
Peter Winick Anyway, this has been fantastic. And you know, Nick, I’m just reflecting what you said. Many nights a greasy pizza in a bottle of cabernet don’t sound like the worst option, but.
Nick Morgan Well, they sound better now, you know?
Peter Winick Yeah, exactly. Well, I appreciate you coming on. I’ve been a fan of yours for a long, long time and read all your work and really enjoyed them with the new stuff coming out, as always. Thank you. Thank you for sharing with us. Appreciate it.
Joseph Michelli Well, the fandom is reciprocal, so thank you for all you do for us, Peter. Thank you.
Nick Morgan Peter. It’s great to chat with you. Great to connect and good to meet you, Joseph.
Joseph Michelli And good to meet you, too. Yeah. And then you can give me the download about how badly dead after the thing. Let’s just do that off the line. Okay?
Nick Morgan Yeah. We won’t share that with the others.
Peter Winick To learn more about Thought Leadership Leverage, please visit our website at ThoughtLeadershipLeverage.com to reach me directly. Feel free to email me at Peter at Thought Leadership Leverage dot com and please subscribe to Leveraging Thought. Leadership on iTunes, or your favorite podcast app to get your weekly episode automatically.