For the purposes of this blog, allow me to take license with William Shakespeare’s original quote: “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players…” Instead, I invite you consider that there has never been a better time to take our respective places on the world’s stage, and this has little to do with professional speaking.
When eighteen-year-old German podcast sensation Philip Rierderle recently took the stage as the opening keynote speaker at the National Speakers’ Association Annual Convention, he held an audience of 1400 professional speakers spellbound for the entire duration of his speech. Mr. Riederle was the youngest speaker to grace the general session platform in the Association’s forty-year history. With his excellent command of the English language, he mesmerized the audience of skeptical old-timers, first-timers and techno-phobs by smashing the stereotypical myths linked to his millennial generation.
He captured my attention, however, not only because of his remarkable confidence as a teenaged speaker. For me, it was the manner in which he has channeled his passion into a mission. At the age of fifteen, Reiderle became famous with his podcast “Mein iPhone und Ich…” (My iPhone and me), currently reaching over one million viewers each year. As he built his massive community of Generation Y followers, traditional corporations began wondering how and why he was able to attract this generational cohort in droves to his own on-line community, while they continued to struggle in their own marketing efforts to connect with this significant segment of consumers. Today, Rierderle is an entrepreneur and renowned thought leader consulting with major companies worldwide regarding the consumer habits of his generation.
Riederle’s delivery and presence served a dual purpose. Not only was his message timely, he also demonstrated a rare blend of authenticity and brilliance by completely owning the stage…the stage on which he stood as a speaker, as well as in his own life. His passion for educating others via podcasts on the multiple uses of an I-Phone that began as a hobby has morphed into a unique calling to heighten generational understanding on a global scale. By doing so, Riederle is helping businesses simultaneously open their minds and create new growth opportunities.
There has never been a better time to take your place on the world’s stage. You don’t need to be a publisher, a major media outlet or renowned speaker. You can claim your place by ensuring that, like Riederle, your vocation is congruent with your personal passion. At the click of a button, you can utilize social networks to tell others about issues that matter to you. There are no limits to expressing your creativity thoughtfully and purposefully.