I got a Facebook inbox message sometime around November last year. The sender advised that I learn ‘quotable quotes’. ‘Buy a book on quotes from speakers like John Maxwell, Brian Tracy, Robert Kiyosaki and Napoleon Hill. It costs just N200,’ the person had written.
Lest I forget, the person also urged me to meet my mentor so he can teach me ‘quotable quotes’.
I was not angry at the advice, but upset at the arrogance with which the person passed it.
Apparently, the person attended Impact Summit 2015 and was expecting to hear statements like:
-Vision without provision is television.
-Anointing without finance is annoyance.
-If you don’t think, you will sink and if you start sinking, you will stink.
-An apostle who would not align himself to mentorship will become an apostate.
-If you don’t look, you will not loop.
-Debt is directly proportional to death.
(The citations above are jokes compiled by David Owoicho, Obinna Unique Hnd and me.)
This person was also expecting an exciting audience that would be screaming words like “Rhema!”, “Talk to me!”, “Chuck me word!”, “Insight!”, “Hmmmmmnnn, oro!”, “Ride on pastor!” and the many funny comments you hear from people when a speaker is speaking, even when they do not understand a thing.
You see eh, any word that just keeps you excited without bringing a corresponding change is a waste of time. Motivational speaking and coaching are tools for transformation. If your many quotes do not bring results, add value or provoke change, they are just mouth exercise.
In 2011, my brother, John Okwudiri Anene introduced me to a lady in Ajegunle. The three of us partnered to start a Dead on Arrival vision. I knew the vision was dead on arrival, but I decided to push on to see if it would work. The lady said we would need training and promised to bring her mentor to come train us. I got us a venue, fixed a date and got my team ready for the training. Her mentor came and started quoting from John Maxwell’s ‘360 degree leader’.
I knew they were Maxwell’s words because I had read over 60% of his books by then. While this mentor was speaking, his protege, the lady who invited him was dozing. He was as boring as he was confused. He was not sure of what he was even teaching. All he did was quote Maxwell.
I was disappointed, my team was disappointed and John was disappointed. When the mentor left, we decided to do a review of the training and the report was extremely bad. And then our lady informed us she had not really listened to him before and he was not her mentor. She just knew he speaks and she also was disappointed.
Dear Motivational Speaker and Life Coach, you need your own content. The content you know, understand, have practiced and can teach well. You need to first do before you teach. The transformation you promise that your tools and methodologies can bring, must first be evident in your life.
Speaking and coaching are relational tools. In Mimi Okwara’s words, ‘Relational tools need both content and paper certifications. And the only way about that is to be trained in them, thoroughly.’
I must add that a certification does not make you the best. It just shows that you belong to a community, an industry and you are a professional. Just the way you go to school to learn nursing, medicine, engineering, there are schools for coaches, counselors and speakers.
Most importantly, as speakers and coaches, we are not men of men. We are MEN of GOD (Men in this context means male and female)
In all your works, dear speaker, make sure you reflect God to your audience and clients.
To be continued…
© Matthew ‘Femi-Adedoyin
Matthew ‘Femi-Adedoyin is the Principal Partner at Abstinence Icon and Visionary of Maximum Impact Network.