None of my family members or teachers are surprised I choose a career that involved talking, but some days I'm surprised I ended up as a sports broadcaster. There weren't many opportunities for women to work in sports when I was in college, and it certainly wasn't something that was encouraged.
But I love to compete. That's one of the reasons sports is a natural fit for me.
As a lifelong sports fan, my interest in sports comes naturally. I played multiple sports through high school and when I got college at Southern Methodist University I became an intramural flag football official, which led to a 10-year career officiating high school football and helped lay the foundation for becoming an NFL sideline reporter. I intentionally built a solid sports resume in every job and internship I pursued in college, but I overestimated how much that would count in the "real world."
I had to prove myself everywhere I went. I didn't get the benefit of the doubt as a football official, sports producer, NFL sideline reporter, baseball TV broadcaster or as a business owner. I was ready to prove myself in big ways, but it felt like all I got were cursory intros, patronizing smiles and the sense that I didn't really belong.
The competitor in me decided those were the moments I would win. If all I was going to get was a few seconds, I was going to make the best damn impression you'd ever seen. And that's where communication skills come into play.
As a woman in sports, I'd estimate I have less than a minute to be taken seriously in any conversation. Often the first few seconds is all someone needs to form an opinion of how they think I do my job. I developed conversation strategies to make those seconds count. In any given month I conduct an average of 100 interviews with athletes and coaches. The two pieces of feedback I get most often are: "You make a great first impression" and "I enjoy talking to you." I'd call that a win.
My story may or may not resonate with you, but here's what should - your communication skills play a huge role in your success.
That shouldn't be a surprise. Most business communication books will tell you that. What those books won't tell you is what to say to improve your communication skills. That's where I come in. Talk Sporty to Me was originally founded in 2009 after a group of successful, high-powered women asked me how to leverage sports small talk in attracting new clients and building relationships with existing clients. What started as a sports conversation quickly evolved in a consulting and training business that provides practical and effective communication strategies every leader, sales team, college student and business professional should master.
My 22-year career in sports broadcasting means I have unique perspective on effective communication and sports fandom. That expertise is the basis for conversation strategies I provide through Talk Sporty to Me. I've worked with hundreds of clients in the 13 years since founding the company. I provide a strategic skillset that businesses, entrepreneurs and individuals can use to accelerate their personal interactions to drive real and tangible results. In short, I help my clients 'win' in interactions that often get overlooked.
I’ve sold products and services to businesses like Nike, Microsoft, DA Davidson, Accenture, Chase, Moss Adams, the Washington Society of CPA's and the University of Oklahoma business school. I have also been featured in business magazines and on television stations across the United States for my ability to provide conversation strategies that lead to improved communication and for my take on how to make sports talk accessible and useful in corporate settings. It's a winning combination that's worked for me and the clients I work with.
So how can I help you and your team win? Send me an email: [email protected] and let's explore training options for 2022.