CNLP 240: Annie F. Downs on the Secrets of Reaching a Large Audience and Connecting with A Growing Tribe by Keeping it Personal

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So many women have much larger audiences than most male leaders, but most male leader are oblivious to it. So, Carey sits down and opens his notebook with author, podcaster and speaker Annie F. Downs.

Carey talks to Annie about the growing tribe of women leaders who have massive audiences. Annie discusses how women do leadership differently and effectively. She even explains why women often don’t call what they do ‘leadership.”

And she covers what it takes to reach a huge audience and still make it feel personal.

Welcome to Episode 240 of the podcastListen and access the show notes below or search for the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts and listen for free. | Facebook | InstagramTwitter | Remember God

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3 Insights from Annie

1. Being vulnerable can connect you to the people you want to reach

If you feel called to share something bigger than yourself and you’re trying to figure out how to get that message out to the masses, it’s important to focus on the ways you can connect with your audience rather than how to increase your reach. It’s not about numbers, it’s about making a genuine connection.

Connection is made through vulnerability. When you’re vulnerable, people realize that your reality is similar to their reality and that draws them in. Leaders, if you’re having a hard time connecting with the people you want to reach, maybe you’re not being vulnerable enough.

2.  Sin has no gender bias

Sin isn’t gender specific. There are no sins for men only or for women only. But the church seems to have an outdated, biased approach that makes some sins seem that way.

Many of those assumptions are decades old and no longer fit into our culture. When specific sins are labeled as things only men engage in or only women suffer from, it adds even more shame for the people who feel their sin is only supposed to be a struggle for the opposite sex.

One way to break down the stereotypes and bring more awareness is to realize that it’s okay to have the hard, awkward conversations in a room where men and women are both present. There’s no need to divide the room anymore. It’s time for the church to do better and stop labeling our sins.

3. Annie’s notes from the field for leaders wanting to connect

If you’re just getting started on your leadership journey (or recallibrating your approach to leadership) here are some great tips to keep you on track:

Get Your Secrets Out in the Open – Your private life needs to be in order. If you have a private life that is so private nobody knows, your secrets will come out eventually. Light always shows up in the darkness.

Close Friends are Important – Have your people in place. You’re going to need them.

Plan for Success – Most people have a plan of what to do if things fail, but what do you do if everything actually goes really well? Dream big and plan for how you’ll handle success.

Treat Everyone in the Green Room the Same – If you are in the green room because you are trying to climb people, you will have a short term experience. Everyone in that room deserves the same amount of respect, from the catering staff to the key note speaker.

Quotes from Episode 240

Men want to listen to men they want to be like, and women want to listen to women they think they are already like. @anniefdowns Click To Tweet

””[Women Click To Tweet are actually teaching women how to lead. We’re just not calling it that.” @anniefdowns” username=”cnieuwhof”]

I think when people fall in love with the people of God, they will fall in love with God. So I want to be the friend they fall in love with so that at some point my leadership walks them toward the reason we do any of this. @anniefdowns Click To Tweet If you are up close with your own pain and you're willing to talk about it, people will trust you. @anniefdowns Click To Tweet

Read or Download the Transcript for Episode 240

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Next Episode: Ian Morgan Cron 

The Enneagram is an ancient personality type profile, and over the last two years Ian Morgan Cron’s new book, The Road Back To You, has helped several hundred thousands of people discover what their number means. Ian talks to Carey about how the Enneagram can help grow your self-awareness and how to reduce conflict at work and at home by understanding how different personality types work. They also discuss the Enneagram as a spiritual growth tool.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 241.

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Carey Nieuwhof
Carey Nieuwhof

Carey Nieuwhof is a best-selling leadership author, speaker, podcaster, former attorney, and church planter. He hosts one of today’s most influential leadership podcasts, and his online content is accessed by leaders over 1.5 million times a month. He speaks to leaders around the world about leadership, change, and personal growth.