We all have a story to tell. Here, I talk to leaders, executives, and business professionals about their story and journey to becoming great communicators.
In this installment I speak with Dr. Bob, founder of Ethos Executive Networking Group, executive coach, and speaker.
- Can you recall the first time you needed to speak publicly in front of multiple people? How did that experience make you feel – and has it impacted how you feel about speaking today?
My early childhood speaking included singing in music bands. My fear was forgetting the song words or not saying what I really wanted to say about a particular song. My experience led to speaking and singing in church. Eventually, I went into corporate life and started speaking in small group management meetings.
- When it comes to the 10 Commandments of Public Speaking, which areas are most challenging for you? Why? Which areas do you feel come easier? Why?Most challenging for me was Commandment #6 – Speak in the rule of three. My tendency was to give too much information and overload the presentation with too many facts and details. Often, I went over the time frame allotted for the presentation.An area that came easier was Commandment #3 – Speak with conviction. When speaking, I always chose topics that I believed in and was passionate about.
- How important is public speaking in your particular industry? How often do your peers, or those in leadership positions speak to a group of multiple people in your field? Do the opportunities increase as someone rises through management/leadership positions? The human resource industry is flooded with great keynote speakers. But, many human resource professionals speak only in their organization and don’t get out in the public view and engage audiences. The opportunities are enormous and would give rise to human resources stature, visibility, and credibility. I think HR leaders need to seek opportunities and use their influence for good.
- How often are you asked to speak publicly now? Do you welcome or dread the opportunity? I speak almost every month in networking groups, business groups, and volunteer groups. I welcome any chance to deliver a presentation on any topic of interest. My favorite topics include: Behavioral Interviewing Skills (how to hire an employee), Personality Assessment (use of psychometric tools), and NeuroLeadership (new business paradigm).
- Are there other areas in your life – outside of work – that ask you to speak or sharing publicly on a consistent basis? If you have those outlets, has this helped you in your professional life? Also, do you feel more comfortable speaking in these settings outside of work?I volunteer for several networking groups and help “C” level management with career and life transitions. This has opened the door to many opportunities. I founded Ethos Networking Group for Professionals and have served over 4,000 in attendance. I have a comfort level with these groups because I have been in their shoes and understand the pain of career transition. This gives me instant credibility to help others help themselves.
- Are you aware of any nervous habits you have when speaking publicly? If so, are these habits that you know that you are doing or that have been told to you? How have you tried to overcome those tendencies?Some habits such as speaking too fast or not pausing for transition lines during a presentation were an issue for me. I went to Zenger Miller Certification, an intense training program for presentations and practiced to adjust my presentation style. Later, I used many of the critiques from Toastmasters to eliminate bad habits. I also use speaker evaluation surveys and after each presentation, I receive great feedback from attendees.
- Can you recall a presentation/speech/class with a speaker that was particularly interesting or memorable to you? What was the topic and what was it that made the experience so compelling?
I once heard Colin Powell, former Secretary of State, speak on principles of leadership. He was gracious, informative, and brief. Later I met him personally and his demeanor matched his presentation. One could tell he was a genuine person and loved people.
- In relation to your professional life – what are you passionate about as it relates to your job? (e.g. Are you solving a problem important to you? Do you get to provide service and answers to others? Is your company’s mission/vision significant to you? Do you simply enjoy the physical work you do – regardless of the industry/cause/etc.?)In my life and career coaching practice I get the opportunity to work with people who really want to make significant changes: behavioral changes, skill enhancement, and volunteer work. These changes translate to them wanting to be a better person and contributing to society. I try to get them “unstuck” and remove “obstacles” that prevent them from that goal. The transformation is great to watch and very rewarding.
Bob Adamik is a highly experienced, energetic and motivated “Fortune 500 and 100” corporate executive who rose from Assistant Manager to Executive Vice President of Human Resources. During his career he gained the respect and confidence of virtually thousands of employees in global financial services, investment banking, consumer banking, mortgage, insurance and non-profit healthcare. He is an HR practitioner that transforms leaders to achieve business and life goals.
Bob has developed outstanding expertise as a Human Resource Generalist. He has experience in: talent acquisition, employee relations, performance management, training and development and succession planning. In addition, he is a certified Activity Vector Analysis (AVA) analyst and 360 Feedback Model subject matter expert. More recently he has researched and delivered outstanding workshops from Neuroscience research to Leadership – NeuroLeadership is the new leadership existential model.
Bob holds a Doctor of Public Administration, with an emphasis in Personality Assessment and Executive Competency, from the University of La Verne. Affectionately called “Dr. Bob” his paradigm addresses the “total person,” leading to individual transformation and employer satisfaction. When executive coaching, he explores the “purpose of life” for his clients and they transform thoughts into meaningful actions.
Bob speaks at numerous networking groups and organizations. He is an adjunct professor at USC. Moreover, he is founder of Ethos Executive Networking Group that has assisted over 4,000 members in career transition and personal behavioral change. Bob has a balanced perspective between family and career and still finds time for servant leadership.