Legacy Speaking Topics
In 2009, Steve created his initial list of speaking topics. They were areas that Steve had an interest and some expertise, and, they were designed to take advantage of his connection with the movie Forrest Gump.
Today, Steve calls them his legacy topics.
Normally a speaker wouldn’t include these topics if they were no longer part of his active offering. But Steve includes them because they are so foundational to his message of Gumption and they offer insight into what Gumption is all about today.
Why include legacy topics if the aren’t offered today?
Because Gumption and Change by Gumption are a combination of all of these ideas all melded together.
Legacy Speaking Topics
The reality is 90% of the speaking I did in the early years was Life is Like a Box of Chocolates. I did And That’s All I’ve Got to Say and Genetic Luck about 2 or 3 times each, the other topics I never did publicly.
Interestingly, the three topics I never actually presented are all part of Gumption and Change by Gumption today.
Here are the 6 legacy topics and a few ideas of how they are part of Gumption today:
1. Life is Like a Box of Chocolates
- Mastering Change and Dealing with Uncertainty is the premise behind Change by Gumption.
- Change by Gumption is about helping individuals and groups of people change.
- It’s about helping them make both incremental change and quantum leap change.
- It’s about overcoming the fear associated with change. I believe that fear is primarily about the unknown. So Change by Gumption is about being fully open and transparent with the change process. It’s about giving every affected person the opportunity to be heard. It’s about taking feedback from the group and using it to improve the change process. It’s about permit individuals to take ownership of the change process.
2. Stupid is as Stupid Does
- One of my primary jobs as a speaker – and person – to this day is to be an encourager. i.e. Positive Thinking
- Both of my keynotes Live Your Life with Gumption and Opportunity Choice Journey are all about keeping a positive mindset and finding the good in situations … just as Forrest Gump did.
- Opportunity Choice Journey and the other Life Lessons from the movie are all about overcoming challenges and our fears.
3. Genetic Luck, A Bad Haircut, and the Idiot Part Comes Natural
- Genetic Luck is really my story. I include a lot of personal stories and lessons learned in my keynotes today.
- The origin of this phrase is this: When working for Bubba Gump, people would want me to break character. That was something I was not permitted to do. They’d ask, “How’d you get this job?” … if they were really persistent, I’d use this phrase as the answer to their question.
- Genetic Luck is the gifts we are given. It’s our strengths. I was genetically gifted with a physical resemblance to Tom Hanks.
- A Bad Haircut represents the things we have to do to satisfy the requirements of the job. In my case, I had to cut my hair weekly. We all have things that we have to do that we don’t necessarily like to do.
- The Idiot Part was my way of poking fun at myself. It’s essentially your attitude.
4. See the Forest Through the Trees
- This topic never had a chance with the public. No one thinks of Forrest Gump as a strategic thinker or planner.
- I originally included this because I (Steve Weber) am a very strategic thinker and planner.
- Change by Gumption is a direct result of wanting to use more of my strategic abilities to solve client problems.
- I remember being told by an ‘expert’ that nobody would hire me to be a strategic planner. That was true in my early years, but today, it’s one of the main reasons I’m hired to solve real communication challenges for my clients — strategically.
5. Run Team Run
- This was the final topic added to my original list of six.
- I added it because I was told that everyone needs team building – I do not consider myself a team builder in the sense of doing rah-rah team building exercises.
- But, Change by Gumption is 100% about getting a team to make a quantum change in thinking and direction.
- Change by Gumption is 100% about getting a team to Function with Gumption.
6. And That’s All I’ve Got to Say About That!
- Communication and Listening Skills – these are two of my greatest strengths.
- Change by Gumption uses both.
- The Roll Out / Launch is all about creating a story that will inspire individuals to want to change so the organization can change.
- The Immediate Feedback & Adjust is all about listening and then organizing the feedback into meaningful data to further improve the change.
- While I don’t teach communication and listening skills, I use them as part of my Speaking and Change by Gumption project process.