This post was originally produced for Forbes.
Perspective comes from experience. Dan Clark, Hall of Fame Speaker and social entrepreneur, gained extraordinary perspective flying in an Air Force jet into space. (Disclosure: Clark and I collaborated on a book with 15 other authors but have no revenue or profit sharing arrangement.)
Retired Air Force four-star General Hal Hornberg met Clark when the General attended a Senior Leaders Conference at Langley Air Force Base thirteen years ago. “It was probably the greatest public presentation that I had seen,” he told me. Thereafter, he went on to hire Clark to speak to leadership teams on multiple occasions.
Social entrepreneur Rick Larsen, who now serves as the Marketing and Development Director at GIVE Salt Lake, said, “There are groups, from Credit Unions to Harley Dealers to the United States Air Force, who call on Dan again and again. This speaks volumes when you consider the variety of speakers and entertainers available to large organizations. Dan forms a connection when he speaks because, in my opinion, he cares. Just a couple of weeks ago Dan donated his time at my request, to fit in a speech to a group of troubled teens.”
Clark’s business, built around his speaking, isn’t limited to that. “We generate revenue through motivational keynote speeches, books, recorded programs, enrollment webinars, half day and full day seminar workshops, one- to three-day personal development courses, executive retreats, and a subscription based membership site,” he says.
He describes his process:
I continuously prepare myself to speak. The deeper my message, the higher the value and proportionate remuneration for services. I constantly research cutting edge results, interview revolutionary leaders whose thinking is disruptive and provocative, hang out with superstars who have “done it,” and then prove my research true through personal experiences. Amazing how easy and rewarding it is to monetize my findings through speaking engagements, selling my books and recorded programs, and enrolling organizational leaders, employees, and participant students who are also compelled to live a significant life into various experiential course curricula.
Clark’s fundamental message is to encourage his audiences to find purpose and meaning in their lives. He says he seeks “to educate and inspire the general populous on the difference between successfully getting what you want, and significantly wanting what you get, so you leave a legacy and don’t die with your music still in you!”
With that as an introduction, I’ll share Clark’s five lessons from his trip into space.
On Thursday, June 16, 2016 at 4:00 Eastern, Clark will join me for a live discussion about his experience in space and his five tips for social entrepreneurs. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.
Clark is an award-winning athlete who fought back from a broken back that ended his football career, to become one of the most highly sought speakers in the world. He reports speaking to audiences in all 50 states and in 59 countries. He received the United States Distinguished Service Medal, the highest civilian award given by the Department of the Air Force.
Larsen said of Clark, “Dan owns a unique space in social impact because what he does through speaking, is show people how to believe: whether in themselves and their own potential, or the value of others in their lives–he taps into the best in each person in the room, and, with laughter, tears and insight, teaches them how to matter—how to be a significant person. When a group thus impacted walks out of the room, you can rest assured they treat others differently. It would be an amazing thing to quantify the number of people Dan has touched and inspired, and the multiplier effect of their improved kindness and humanity toward others. It is that “ripple effect” that we often hear about in allegory, that Dan so effectively practices.”
General Hornberg said, “Dan’s impact on individuals make the organization better, but in ways that are difficult to measure. He inspires people to put people first, to be more compassionate. This causes the organization to shift.”
“He’s got the whole package and a desire to give back,” Hornberg concludes.