How would you like to have someone invite 30 people to an upscale restaurant in the best part of town, pay for lunch, and everyone shows up.  Sounds like a dream doesn’t it? Also sounds like no matter what you are doing whether for-profit or nonprofit, you would get a huge opportunity.

Well, guess what!  Nothing came from it.  

How did that happen?

The Human Connection

There are a number of reasons, but I’m only going to write about one of them today.  The one that I feel is the most important: human connection.

When I say human connection, I am talking about presentations that will touch you in such a way that you want to become part of it.  

Several years ago, I was at a conference in Dallas, TX.  The platform speaker was a young man I had never met even though we were from the same city.  His story was so compelling that I was totally focused (didn’t even check my cell phone) and to this day I remember most of what he said.  I was also in tears and have shared his story, his book, and his video many times. 

I have also sat through presentations that I couldn’t wait to be over (and spent time checking my cell phone).  

Stories Make the Connection

What makes the difference?  Stories, not facts, figures or slide presentations (which never work correctly anyway).

So, let’s go back to the luncheon that didn’t come to any fruition.  The main reason is that there were no compelling stories.  It was one person stating facts and giving measured information.  

Think how effective it would have been had the program consisted of persons who had benefited from the nonprofit or for-profit.  We all have a part of our brain that controls our emotions, and that is what you want to reach. This is done by telling true stories.  

Another time I was at a church fellowship, and Sam.  Sam was Liberian, had been in the US for about 5 years and was raising money for schools in Liberia.  He didn’t talk about the size of the school, the materials needed to build the building he talked about growing up in Liberia, his difficult times attending school there and eating out of garbage cans.    Sam is another person I remember to this day and have donated to his non-profit many times.

Captivation, Attention, and Trust

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To be successful you must captivate, get attention, and gain trust. This is done by telling captivating stories.  Perhaps you run a non-profit on the other side of the world? Then do videos. Usually, you want to have three speakers who give short messages and follow that message with an ask.  

I am going to challenge those who read this. Pick out a story from either your life or the life of someone else, make it into a compelling story, and share it to the widest possible audience.  Now you are on your way to bridging the connection gap.