Do you want to motivate people during your next presentation? How about inspire, teach, influence, convince, move, enthuse or maximize? (If not, what are you waiting for??) We hear these words from many of our clients when discussing the impact they want to have on their audiences.

In short, most of our clients work with EMS because they need to ‘sell’ instead of ‘tell.’ We often suggest that they look to the world of coaches for some inspiration here. The successful coaches at all levels—pro, college, high school, and even the occasional grade-school coaches—know how to motivate their audiences to perform at higher levels.

Coaches give speeches that are intense, funny, moving, memorable, and totally quotable. We know that they communicate first and foremost with their players, but keep in mind that most coaches have multiple audiences: fans, refs/umpires, staff, and especially the media. They give pre-game and halftime presentations, chalk talks, and even lead post-game press conferences.

In the dramatic world of sports, we see all kinds of coaches. Some are loud and emotional, while others are more subdued and methodical in their approach. What makes the styles of successful coaches memorable? What can presenters learn from them? Here are a few thoughts on factors that stand out from the coaching ranks:

Live Close to the Edge. Since every game has a winner and a loser, we notice that coaches are willing to get beyond their comfort zones and live closer to the edge, which is why we see so many colorful rants, expletive-filled tirades, and motivational moments. There are many corporate presenters who try to be too businesslike and serious when they need to go all-out and take the kinds of risks that coaches take.

Have Clear Objectives. Speakers don’t always make it clear what actions they want their audience to take. If you, as a presenter, aren’t making your point crystal clear, then you’re throwing a damp cloth over your moment in the spotlight. Coaches always know—and their audiences know—the prime reason for their pep talks: play together, do your jobs, make the supreme effort, and WIN THE GAME!

Believe They Can Boost Performance. Great coaches know the difference that confidence, attitude, and emotions can make on both individual and team performance. They know that a great speech can improve on-field results, and their pep talks are geared to get the most out of everyone who listens. When you think of it, most persuasive speakers have the same objective.

Use Multiple Techniques to Be Effective. Don’t get caught up in the idea that you have to yell in order to motivate. (In fact, coaches who yell all the time lose their edge pretty quickly.) If you look through the collection of clips that we assembled, you’ll find a mix of calm, composed, passionate and over the top speeches.

Which techniques will work best? Here’s our answer: the ones that let the real you shine through. You can learn from Lombardi, but don’t try to BE Lombardi. Trust yourself to be yourself!

When you’re ready to become a motivational and inspirational leader, give EMS a call. You can hire us for personal coaching, bring us in to work with your team, or sign up to attend one of our public workshops. There’s no better gift than an investment in yourself this holiday season.