Leaders in the Trenches

Gene Hammett Podcast

I’m a director, writer choreographer working in film, tv and theater. I’ve directed an award winning series, two one woman shows, written two musicals, a feature film, a pilot series and a contribute a chapter to A Life In Dance. I’m also a TEDx organizer in NYC. And with that background, I apply my expertise to the art of public speaking by helping speakers identify, craft and deliver life-changing talks. 

I serve public speakers who want to take it to the next level and either take a bigger stage, or tell a story from a fresh point of view.

What’s different about my approach as a director is that I help speakers become who they are supposed to be on stage. I get them to open up by what I call active listening sessions. I get them to talk, to confess to share and then I reflect what they’ve shared with me back onto them so they can write an incredible big talk. It’s vulnerable and naked and ugly and that’s where the magic happens, just like in a rehearsal with an actor. 

Ideas versus issues. Global warming is an issue. “If I unplug everything I’m not using before I leave the house, I can reduce my carbon footprint” is an idea. 

Inspiring an idea versus pitching me your business. 

I use the example of raising awareness for a foundation. You want to talk about something that’s important to you, that you’re passionate about. Kevin Pearce a former pro snow-boarder pitched me his Love Your Brain Foundation as the cornerstone of his talk. It wasn’t an idea that inspires, it was a pitch to become involved. 

Another speaker I’ve worked, the Amazing Kristin Smedley, started the Curing Retinal Blindness Foundation, started this company because two of her three children were born blind with a rare eye disease. She had been talking about this for 16 years. I guided her to think differently about this topic for the first time. 

Instead of  ”It’s time to bring awareness to cure a disease that’s been overlooked for too long”.  

How about, “As a mother of two blind children, I saw the world as limited for them, until I saw the world through their eyes and realized the limitations were my own.” 

This talk is still passionately and topically about Rare Eye Disease, but it’s become personal and very inspiring and she we no longer pitching something, she was sharing a big idea. This talk is all about her experience and from that, we learn every problem the foundation solves and we have not tried to sell anything.

  • She creates awareness by sharing her very personal story.
  • She creates a community by letting us into her life.
  • And She allows us to become informed and inspired by sharing her life-changing talk.

I also host a podcast called The Big Talk on iTunes, and that was totally your idea, so thanks. And I’m a TEDx organizer. Jamie Broderick of Success Connection, co-organize TEDxLincolnSquare in NYC. 

Leadership from the stage comes, when you are honest and being yourself.  It comes from when you aren’t asking for anything you are passionately and expertly give to your audience. 

Be you, not the version of you, you think people want you to be. 

In less than one year, I’ve hosted over 70 podcast episodes of The Big Talk, directed 7 speakers, become a TEDx Organizer, created an online course called The Art of The Big Talk, created a webinar called from sales pitch to big idea, I’ve spoken at the Lean In Power Circle For Women Even, Sustainable Success, It’s Safe To Shine, I’ve been on your podcast, Jenn Leders’s, Christine Miskinis, Petra Kolbers, and looking forward to talking with Bog Burg and John Lee Dumas of EO on Fire. 

Just gotta show up and lead.  

 

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