4 Jun 2010

Angus Young - a world class communicator

Some 32, 768 people packed Stockholm's Olympic stadium last night to watch one of those rock bands that has been going strong for more than 30 years. I had the good fortune to see ACDC play last night and perhaps the most impressive part of the show was the lead guitarist Angus Young's ability to control the crowd through facial expression and electric guitar.

It's not easy for one person to communicate with 32,768 at the same time. It's not easy to create interaction and it's usually the role of the lead singer to bring it about but with this band, the lead guitarist was the one who did most of the communicating.

Angus Young's incredible energy, skill and passion for his music made him likeable from the start. The fact that he was pouring with sweat and looked like he was going to have a heart attack showed how committed he was. And passion and commitment are often worth following.

Once he got the crowd's respect, he used it. Mid-way through a guitar solo, Young's contorted face reveals a cheeky grin. One hand lifts itself up behind his ear and he stops playing until he hears a cheer. The grin wins the crowd; a cheer erupts. He plays one more note, stops, awaits a cheer and moves on. He then extends the length of each note which extends the length of the audience's cheers. Soon enough, he has the audience shouting and singing in exactly the way he wants.

Communicating in person with more than 30,000 people is not such an easy feat. As communicators, we can learn a few things from rock star guitarists like Angus Young. Be committed, be open, be passionate and you'll gain your audience's respect. When you've got their respect, you can enter into a dialogue with them that has a higher chance of bringing satisfaction to both parties.

Of course, ACDC's music was pretty good too.

Colm O'Callaghan is JG Communication’s Head of Operations so when he’s not blogging he’s looking after the day to day business at this wonderful communicaitons agency.
So, who’s JG Communication? We’re Sweden’s largest and, we think, ‘leading’ communications agency in Sweden. We help our clients have conversations with the people that matter most to them using the tools that matter most to us, words, sound and vision.

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