Your organization creates a culture of communication and purpose when it shares stories that speak to the mind and appeal to the heart.
Words are powerful elements of alignment: key themes and messaging must be carefully selected and crafted to create a memorable perception of your organization and the cause it represents.
The words and phrases that you choose (your positioning or public vision statement; your tag line; and words that represent the values, character, and mission of your cause) are the phrases that you want your followers and advocates to share and to use in conversation. You can’t create your brand perception, but your words—and the actions that support them—can influence your brand perception in your audience’s hearts and minds.
Words — combined with powerful typography and memorable imagery — evoke meaning, motivate people to action, and become a catalyst that lead to changed thinking in the minds (and hearts) of those you’re seeking to engage.
Simply: Changed thinking leads to changed behavior.
Change the perception of the cause (how your supporters think about it), and you’ll change the behavior of the supporter.
To inspire is to stir the heart and challenge the mind of a follower. When an individual understands deeply how their values align with your organization’s values and the cause it represents, this realization gives them more than an opportunity to be a supporter or advocate. It gives them a story to share, a point of connection, and personal meaning.
James Humes, speechwriter for five presidents, reminds us:
“The art of communication is the language of leadership.”
Your audience will recognize and respond to inspirational leadership when what you say (your message), and how you say it (design and communication choices), connect with the things that mean the most to them.
In essence, when your story and messages align with what is most important to your audience, you’re speaking their language. Your purpose is their story.
Choose your words well and they will motivate people to follow, donate to, advocate for, and believe in your cause.
Believers will give and serve sacrificially. Believers become ambassadors, who will represent your organization wherever they are, because their values align with the cause. Believers will follow wherever the organization leads, and will support your cause when you’ve inspired them to action.
Your inspiration gives those who believe in your cause meaning because they become part of the change and impact.
Then what's the secret?
It’s not about you or your cause. It’s about your audience and how your inspirational leadership makes them feel.
The world is watching, and it is asking: “Do you want me to follow you? Inspire me!”