Your business success roadmap
What are you hoping to achieve to improve your life? Do you have a message to share with the world? Are you trying to launch a product or advance your career?
You can accomplish your professional goals. The most direct path to your success will come through clear communication.
In the keystone article of this site, I broke down King Communication’s Triple Crown:
- Crafting messages
- Creating presentations
- Speaking publicly
You will succeed to the extent you do those three things well.
Sound overwhelming? Let me repeat… you can do it.
This realm of Communication Kingdom allows us to think of the work ahead as a journey you will take to get the results you desire. It’s a whole thing as you’ll see in a minute.
In our last post, we talked about the steps you will lead others through. If the Magna Carta is about mindset/philosophy and being strategic then this next part is about getting tactical.
How will you keep yourself on track? Glad you asked.
The C.A.S.T.L.E. framework
You can’t have a king and queen without a castle, right?
King Communication and Queen Marketing occupy a very specific royal residence, the fortress of all business success.
There’s a reason for this branding. I present to you Credibility Castle.
Credibility Castle is a marvelous place. It stands for everything you need to remember as you build a successful platform.
Here’s how that acronym flows:
Success comes down to connecting with others through communication. Your audience can be anyone, anywhere, at any time. You reach them by effectively speaking and teaching, but all your work must be based on listening and learning through empathy while educating yourself and others.
Check out the video breakdown if you like.
The Content Crypts
Remember how content used to be king?
I do. Once upon a time, all you had to do was pump out as many words on a blog as you could. Millions of websites featured nothing more than keyword glut designed to fool Google’s crawlers into thinking they were relevant and helpful.
But times have changed. The robots have learned. SkyNet will kill us all!
Okay, we’re not facing Terminators (yet), but the days of bad content winning on the internet are over.
Communication is King now, as you know, and only good content is fit for making your kingdom thrive. Still, that old content tends to stick around, as a reminder of earlier efforts if nothing else.
The Content Crypts lay deep beneath Credibility Castle.
Let all poorly contrived and badly developed content be dead and buried in the crypts below your castle of credibility. How do you know what content to toss down here? If it’s unhelpful, irrelevant, or unclear then bury it.
Remember, crypt and cryptic come from the same origin. Your meaning should never be hidden or cryptic, but obvious and apparent.
That said, some good work may even need to be laid to rest in the Content Crypts.
Some of your past text, audio, and video content may be hallowed. Perhaps you’ve done great work that served its purpose. Celebrate it and update if possible.
Either way, you don’t want to spend too much time down in the crypts admiring, rethinking, and focusing on content whose day is past.
Get into the daylight and create new stuff always.
Other landmarks on your business success journey
The C.A.S.T.L.E. framework anchors everything we do as communicators. I did promise a roadmap, however, so let’s get going.
I’ve thought a lot about Communication Kingdom now for years. Storytelling is a powerful way to communicate ideas. Metaphors also work.
For example, you can’t get in and out of Credibility Castle without the communication drawbridge. But that’s just the beginning.
Consider the following landmarks a way to fortify a successful approach in your mind as you pursue professional success.
Mount Message is the Everest of Communication Kingdom.
You should be able to see Mt. Message from anywhere in your kingdom. This feature stands out above all to anyone who looks in your direction.
For some, Mt. Message is a product or solution or both. For some, the peak of your work is an idea or ideal or movement.
Above all, Mt. Message is always your brand. You may not think of yourself as a brand, but you are one. People associate certain traits, values, interests, and ideas with who you are. No matter what. The best we can do is try to define those for others.
Plant your flag here and stand boldly for something. Appear. Stick out. Be conspicuous.
What do you represent? What do you stand for?
Do the work to create a clear identity people can see, respond to, and move toward.
The Presentation Peaks
You didn’t think people could just easily skip right to the face of your brand, did you?
Mount Message is the pinnacle of the Presentation Peaks. Your job is to lead people there, through the (sometimes perilous) Presentation Peaks.
A mountain range must be navigated expertly. Your audience relies on you to guide them safely through whatever obstacles stand in their way. Be their success Sherpa!
Beware those obstacles, like the Caves of Confusion. Oh man, are these a constant threat. Fail to light a path and lead the way, and your listener will quickly stumble into darkness, perhaps forever.
One minute you can be moving right along, building momentum, but lose focus and he or she will never reach the success awaiting them atop Mt. Message.
The Caves of Confusion aren’t the only potential pitfalls. The higher you ascend, the greater the potential for stormy weather. Communication climates are critical, after all.
Your presentation skills go beyond how you deliver information to others. The way you appear, speak, and show up in every situation defines your brand. Every public facing moment matters.
The Sea of Speaking
So far, we’ve covered two-thirds of the Triple Crown: Crafting messages (Mt. Message) and Creating presentations (Presentation Peaks).
Speaking publicly is the last jewel of the Triple Crown, and we come to the Sea of Speaking.
No way around it, you will be required to speak with many people in many situations and settings if you hope to achieve business success.
Speaking with confidence is how you will bring the people in, wave after wave. You may develop a sinking feeling at times or even feel like you’re drowning. Hopefully you’ll map out a clear view of the Strategy Shores.
Do enough presentations and you’ll learn what it’s like to lose focus, get thrown off, and maybe even go completely astray of your purpose.
Seafarers can follow celestial GPS like the North Star as well as prominent landmarks on shore. As a presenter, you will need to keep your North Star clear in your mind. You’ll also need to set your sights on Mt. Message as you interact with others.
You should always have a clear view of your Mt. Message. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself adrift, uncertain where you are or where you are going. Lose your way, and you’ll lose your audience too.
Sometimes the Sea of Speaking pushes you into choppy waters. Experience will help you navigate difficult situations. Watch out for dangerous undertows of unhelpful people and poorly organized events. (By the way, your “ship” is critical to your success. We’ll cover that soon).
A well-structured presentation and outline is like a well lit shoreline for any speaker. Follow it to your listener’s delight.
Finally, stay in your lane. Be authentic and deliver the expertise you’re immersed in. To put it in maritime terms, don’t go beyond your depth bucko, lest your chances at success sink down to Davy Jones’ Locker.
The Isle of Influence
Your goal is to build influence and create momentum that makes other people eager to work with you.
Islands are exclusive, and everyone knows about them. The Isle of Influence in Communication Kingdom symbolizes the kind of influential environment you should strive to build.
Create such popular destinations in your kingdom that people line up to learn from and work with you.
Where will your roadmap take you?
I hope you’re better able to visualize the journey you’ll take as someone who communicates yourself to the levels of business success you’re after.
Remember the Triple Crown:
- Craft compelling messages, which includes establishing a clear identity and brand. Plant your flag on Mt. Message for all to see.
- Create effective presentations that demonstrate your expertise and help guide others through the Presentation Peaks.
- Speak often publicly, acting with confidence as you navigate the Sea of Speaking to gain influence with others.
Along the way, be sure to trade in shallow content for deep and meaningful communication. The C.A.S.T.L.E. framework should keep you on track.
There are many other places to focus on as you build your Communication Kingdom, such as Networking Forest, Commerce Cove, and the Cliffs of Crucial Conversation to name a few. We’ll come to those in time.
For now, make your focus simple.
Be an expert. Be a guide. Gain influence. You can do it like no one else can.