The Managing Director of Lidl in Spain once revealed to me that he just couldn’t understand why Spanish people preferred to shop at premium retailers like Caprabo and spend significantly more than they would spend at his Lidl stores.
His only explanation was that they probably wanted to avoid being seen shopping at the Lidl discounter stores. Image, brand, quality – great values in the Spanish culture, especially with food.
What will the others think of me? My neighbors? My family? My friends? For sure, all of them will think bad of me.
Exactly the same happens to our perception when we are on stage. When we speak in public we switch our perception from reason to cheat. The entire audience will think I’m a clown. The entire audience will laugh at me. The entire audience will throw tomatoes at me like in Buñol.
Of course, this is nonsense. Nothing in the world is more subjective than our perception.
Let’s assume you start your speech rapping. If you face 600 people in the audience you will face 600 opinions. Will all of those 600 opinions be negative? Will every single one in the audience think your rapping part was pathetic? Of course not, no way.
I’m not aware of any specific research, but I guess it’s more like the Gaussian curve. There will always be some people in the audience who think you are a loser. There will always be some others who think you are brilliant. The majority will say that the rapping part was quite a different, catchy and cool beginning.
Bill Cosby said, “I do not know a safe key to success, but I know a safe key to failure: to please everybody.”
You will never please everybody. Instead, focus on those 60-80% of positive and super positive opinions. Start a speech singing once! Show your passion for Tango with a real demonstration of the dance! Juggle with three balls when you explain the job rotation in your company!
Our perception is a cheat and the antitoxin is available for free – self-confidence. What will the others think of us? We couldn’t care less. We go and shop at Lidl and proudly carry our Lidl bags. This is the attitude that makes us grow in our everyday life and on stage. Be Lidl!