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Who is more important?

by Randall Craig on August 21, 2007

Filed in: Blog, Make It Happen Tipsheet, Networking, New Job, Promotion

Tagged as: , ,

When you are speaking to a large group, who is more important – the audience or you?

Think about it, there is an entire audience sitting on the edge of their chairs, listening to each and every one of your words. You may have been paid thousands to deliver your speech. And there you are, on the platform, under the bright lights with a microphone in your hand. So who is more important – them or you?

While not many readers may be professional speakers, the same question arises when you are being considered for a promotion or a new job: who is more important – them or you?

And again: when you are about to make that big sales pitch, who is more important – them or you?

At the risk of sounding rude, the number one rule of beginning relationships is that no one cares about you — they only care about how you can solve their problem. In all three of the above cases, we typically forget that we are in the limelight only because someone has put us there. And they’ve done so for a reason.

As soon as you realize it is not all about “me”, then it is easier to begin understanding all about “them” – and their reason. This must happen if you are hoping to meet their needs.

This week’s action item: Before your next meeting of any type, write down what the other meeting participants’ needs are. Hint: if you aren’t sure, do some research or ask them directly. Then make sure that your agenda and your preparation will satisfy them. Only once their needs are met can you expect them to reciprocate. And when they do, it will not just be in the meeting, but outside too.

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Randall Craig

@RandallCraig (follow me)



Randall has been advising on Web and Social Strategy since 1994 when he put the Toronto Star online, the Globe and Mail's GlobeInvestor/Globefund, several financial institutions, and about 100+ other major organizations. He is the author of seven books, including the recently released "Everything Guide to Starting an Online Business", and speaks across North America on Social Media and Web Strategy. More at and

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