Six Needs of Audience Engagement

How to improve your next presentation by addressing each of these key areas. 


Tony Robbins is an American motivational speaker, personal finance instructor, and self-help author. In a LinkedIn post he published in November of 2014, titled “The 6 Human Needs: Why We Do What We Do,” he wrote, “While each human being is unique, we also share nervous systems that function in the same way.

There are also six fundamental needs that everyone has in common, and all behavior is simply an attempt to meet those six needs.” 

According to Robbins, they are: 

  1. Certainty
  2. Significance
  3. Connection/Love
  4. Growth
  5. Contribution of Serving Others 
  6. Variety

In your quest to move an audience closer to your cause, how many of these elements do you consider when preparing a speech?

When listening to other presentations, can you identify these forces at work? Do you formulate your speeches and presentations with these essential ingredients in mind? Think about how you might improve your next presentation by addressing each of these areas. 

For example: 

1.  Certainty:

How can you make your audience more comfortable with you? How can you establish a sense of trust so that all involved are comfortable and able to enjoy your presentation? 

2.  Significance:

Are you presenting your material in a way that causes participants to feel involved and like this information is pertinent to them individually? 

3.  Connection/Love:

How can you strip away the any barriers between you and those you’re presenting to? How can you encourage connection through content, participation, or subject matter? 

4.  Growth:

Are you introducing concepts that will make your audience’s life better/different/more interesting? There’s a way to make even the most mundane topics more interesting and applicable—it’s all in the presentation of that information. Make sure your message leaves participants feeling inspired, motivated, and ready to act. 

5.  Contribution:

Give your audience an opportunity to feel involved. Whether throughout your actual presentation, or with strategic call-to-actions that give them goals or tasks to focus on after the presentation—help them feel like they can leverage your message to contribute to something larger than themselves. 

Next page- #6 Variety and Takeaway

Chuck Garcia
Chuck is an author, executive coach, keynote speaker, and CEO of Climb Leadership International. He coaches executives on public speaking and leadership communication. A 25-year veteran of Wall Street, he spent several of those in leadership positions at Bloomberg, BlackRock, and Citadel. He is also adjunct associate professor at Columbia University where he teaches leadership communication in The Fu Foundation Graduate School of Engineering and Applied Science. He leverages his business leadership experience, as well as his hobby of mountain climbing, to provide an effective teaching narrative for professionals applying his tools and techniques. In his book A Climb to the Top, an Amazon best seller, draws on years of coaching and consulting experience to explain how you can become a powerful and persuasive communicator. Chuck is a graduate of Syracuse University and has a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership. Website