Anthony first became aware of Nancy Duarte when he watched the Al Gore TED talk that featured the slide deck created by Nancy Duarte and her team. That’s when he began grabbing her books every time they came out and applying her concepts about storytelling and leadership to the things he was doing in the sales world. On this episode Anthony has the honor of speaking with Nancy and the co-author of her latest book “Illuminate,” Patti Sanchez. You’ll get an earful of great advice about how leaders can use stories to lead people where they need to go, on this episode.

We need to understand storytelling on a larger scale ~ Nancy DuarteClick To Tweet

Why leaders are torchbearers and the difference their role can make.

Leaders, by definition, are leading people into something new, or different, or needed. It’s in this way that they carry a torch, illuminating the way before the team as they all move forward. Part of the way that good leaders do that is by leading with vision, empathy, and a deep understanding of the things that motivate their followers to move into unknown territory. The same principles apply for the salesperson who is truly trying to help their prospects move toward a purchase that will supply the solution to their problems. You’ll learn a lot on this episode, not just about leadership but about how salespeople can be leaders to their clients.

Why leaders are often accused of lacking empathy.

We all know that leaders are characteristically hard driving, vision oriented people. With a bent like that it’s not uncommon for leaders to be accused of lacking empathy toward those they are attempting to lead. The reason for that is simple: leaders tend to see the end goal or the vision very clearly and need to slow down long enough to understand that their followers likely don’t have the same clarity or drive that they possess. On this episode Nancy Duarte and Pattie Sanchez chat with Anthony about how leaders can modify their approach to leadership in ways that enable their followers to actually follow with more of their hearts invested.

Many leaders focus too much on the “how” and not enough on the “why” ~ Anthony IannarinoClick To Tweet

Many leaders and salespeople focus too much on the “what” and not enough on the “why.”

In this great conversation Nancy Duarte and Patti Sanchez point out that leaders often emphasize the methods or steps that they intend for their teams to take in order to reach a goal. That’s good for as far as it goes, but that’s a long way from helping them understand WHY the goal they are headed toward is so doggone important in the first place. Helping your followers or prospects understand the NEED for the end goal, be it an accomplishment or a sale, is the most important aspect of good leadership because it is what maintains focus and motivation over the long haul. You can hear more on this episode of In The Arena.

People don’t do things for your reasons, they do things for their reasons.

In this conversation a great point is made in noticing that people don’t act because a boss, leader, or salesperson want them to act or think they should act, they take action because they have a personal and internal reason for acting. A good salesperson or leader becomes skilled at asking the kind of questions that reveal the true motives underlying the contemplation of a decision, so they can lead toward a decision in the most effective way. You’ll enjoy the creative and helpful insights you hear on this episode.

People don’t do things for your reasons. They do things for their reasons ~ Nancy DuarteClick To Tweet

Outline of this great episode

  • How Anthony came to be aware of Nancy Duarte.
  • How Nancy’s books came about and why she released them in the order she did.
  • What Slide:ology does for people who make presentations.
  • The idea behind the concept of a leader as a torchbearer.
  • How the Star Wars and Lord of the Rings themes emerged in the books.
  • The need for better storytelling in helping people do what they are meant to do.
  • Why people don’t do things for your reasons, but for theirs.
  • Why are leaders often accused of lacking empathy?
  • Getting “inspiration” across to your followers or listeners.
  • The power of ceremonies in moving people to action.
  • The challenges of moving through things in “the big fight.”
  • Who the most recent book is for.
  • The tools included in the book.
  • The most important things Nancy has learned in life.
  • What Nancy and Pattie would be doing if they weren’t doing her writing and consulting.
  • What Patti and Nancy hope to be remembered for.

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Resources & Links mentioned in this episode









The theme song “Into the Arena” is written and produced by Chris Sernel. You can find it on Soundcloud

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The salesperson is the one who helps a person on their path to transformationClick To Tweet
It’s never too late to live the life you dreamed of ~ Patti SanchezClick To Tweet

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Post by Anthony Iannarino on April 29, 2016
Anthony Iannarino
Anthony Iannarino is a writer, an author of four books on the modern sales approach, an international speaker, and an entrepreneur. Anthony posts here daily.
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