Many speakers and trainers want to work globally but aren’t sure how to make it happen. As two CSPs, one in Atlanta
(Jennifer) and one in Berlin, Germany (Dirk), we
created a highly successful intensive weeklong leadership program in 2016 for coaches in Berlin. Dirk’s
consulting firm hosted Jennifer, and we collaborated
for a year to design and deliver the program.
Afterward, we analyzed what made the experience work so well and crafted a process based
on what we learned. We want you to be successful
in your partnership efforts, so we are sharing the
Global Octopus Model, which we created to save you
time, money, and effort. (Find details below about
how to download a full image of our model.)
BARRIERS TO SUCCESS
What are the key barriers to speaking globally?
We believe they are the enemies of change. Think
of the metaphor of an octopus. We believe people
can look at partnering globally as something to be
feared or embraced.
This scary octopus has three key components.
Fear, like a fear of the unknown. Jennifer had never
been to Germany and had built up some bias about
the German people that made her somewhat anxious
about going there, and she had to face that.
Self-doubt. Although Dirk was learning English
while preparing his program for Influence 2018, he
didn’t think it was good enough.
Self-comfort. We all have thoughts like, “Everything
is good, I live a very satisfying life, and I don’t want to
change.” Thoughts like these keep us risk averse and
in our comfort zone.
If we want to succeed in speaking internationally,
we have to acknowledge these fears and reframe
them as opportunities.
Seeing the octopus as a cool creature who offers
countless opportunities to learn, grow, and contribute to your bottom line is the key.
THE GLOBAL OCTOPUS MODEL
Once you address your internal barriers, consider
using the Global Octopus road map to create the
best experience possible. Working your way around
the octopus’s eight arms will help better prepare you
to go forward. After reviewing the process, you may
decide that partnering with an international speaker
is not the route for you. And that could save you a
great deal of energy and expense.
Download a visual of the Octopus Model at
What international connections do you have through
social media, NSA, GSF, or other professional organizations?
What global contacts do you have through your current
or past clients?
Are there friends, family, or colleagues who could
introduce you to their global contacts?
In what countries have your books or articles been
AVAILABLE TIME AND ENERGY
How much time can you spend on preparation, delivery,
and travel for an international program?
How much money are you willing to invest in an overseas
project (a concrete number)?
What are your emotional and physical energy levels for
What are your “superpowers” (special skills and strengths)?
CULTURAL TRANSFERABILITY AND KNOWLEDGE
How portable is your content?
Are there countries or areas of the world where your
content resonates more?
What countries or cultures are you drawn to?
What countries have you already visited, for work or
pleasure or both?
How do you hope to grow as a person by speaking
What concrete professional results do you want to achieve?
What income do you want to gain?
Imagine you have delivered your program and it was a great
success. What were the benefits to you?
DIRK W. EILERT, CSP, is one of the
leading global experts on body language
and micro facial expressions. Based in Berlin,
Germany, he is the author of five books on the
topic. Dirk is also a leading keynote speaker
and runs a well-regarded academy of emotional
intelligence serving coaches and trainers all over
Europe. Find him at eilert-akademie.de.
JENNIFER B. KAHNWEILER, PhD,
C S P, is known as the “Champion of Introverts.”
She is the author of The Introverted Leader,
Quiet Influence, and The Genius of Opposites,
which have been translated into 17 languages.
Based in Atlanta, she keynotes and facilitates
seminars on harnessing introvert power. Find her