NMP - April 2017 - 75

special focus on LEADERSHIP

I know this stuff works. Over 15
years ago, stand-up comedy and
improv were both my training
grounds, and I've also seen the
success of speakers and business
professionals that I've mentored
who have used the principle of
follow the follower.
In the meantime, I encourage
you to pay attention to your
audience and accept their
feedback. But be careful, this
feedback can be addicting.
Before you know it you might be

headlining at comedy clubs across
the country or you might be the
next main stage performer on
Saturday Night Live. Whether you
are delivering a sober message,

a special focus on LEAD

leading a team, or lighting up the
room with laughter, your
leadership communication will
improve if you shut up and follow
the follower.

Since 2001, Jerome Mayne has been an international
public speaker on fraud and ethics in the finance industry.
He is the author of the book, Diary of a White Collar
Criminal and co-author of the real estate continuing
education program titled, Mortgage Fraud and Predatory
Lending-What Every Agent Should Know (Kaplan). Jerome
may be reached by phone at (612) 919-3007, e-mail
Jerome@JeromeMayne.com or visit JeromeMayne.com.

75

NationalMortgageProfessional.com

n National Mortgage Professional Magazine n APRIL 2017

followers. Meaning, they didn't pay
attention to the living, breathing
people in front of them. They did
not adjust their delivery, not in the
slightest little bit, to communicate
effectively or connect with their
audience. I gave them the floor,
the microphone so to speak, and
they blew it.
Then, I had to spend the time
afterwards, explaining their new
loan programs to my employees.
Can you imagine this at a comedy
club? If the club owner had to
explain the jokes to the audience
after the comic left the stage, the
comic would be blacklisted and
worse, the audience would never
come back.
When I coach a speaker or an
executive who wants to improve
their ability to connect with their
groups, the first thing they usually
ask is how they can add jokes, or
comedy into their presentations. I
don't start with the words they
need to say. I start with them. I
help them discover who they are,
their presence and how their
audience will receive them. To
practice this, I have them present
in front of a group of children. The
goal is to keep the focus of the
kids as they glance around the
room or tickle the fidgeting little
rug-rat sitting next to them.
The challenge is not change
their material, but to adjust to the
group you are trying to lead. It's
probably unlikely that your
employees, co-workers or
conference attendees are going to
poke, prod or tickle the person
sitting next to them. Well, I
suppose I shouldn't assume.
Here is another way to practice
following the follower. There are
open stage comedy nights in just
about every city in the country. Go
to a few and watch for what I have
been describing above. Instead of
sitting back and enjoying the
show, watch for the adept
comedians-the good leaders-to
see how they follow their followers.
Additionally, many cities have
improv classes. Improv, short for
improvisation, is quite different
from stand-up, but improv classes
can be another great way to build
communication skills. Improv is
often better suited to the needs of
working professionals because it is
a more structured approach than
the random sink-or-swim
atmosphere of a stand-up comedy
open stage. And an improv
classroom can be a much safer
place to learn because everyone
starts out at roughly the same skill
level.

a special focus on LEADERSHIP


http://www.JeromeMayne.com http://www.NationalMortgageProfessional.com http://www.originatorconnect.com

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