Transform Your Approach . . . Achieve Results!
Are you up to the challenge?
This month we’ve created a 21-Day Communication Challenge aimed at revitalizing your speaking skills and preparing for your next high-stakes presentation. And we are so committed to helping you step up your game that if you take on the challenge you may win a $25 gift certificate to Amazon.com. Here’s how it works. . .
Below you’ll find a skill-building theme for each of the next three weeks. Your challenge is to use each week to assess your personal strengths and identify practical techniques for achieving a self-assured confidence that engages your audience, strengthens your credibility and maximizes your success.
Please share your lessons learned throughout the month by leaving a comment below. Your tips and stories may be featured in a future issue of SpeakerNotes and you may be eligible to win a $25 Amazon gift certificate.
Week 1: May 9 – 15
Grace Under Pressure
Unforeseen snafus — from blown electrical connections to loud construction noises in the next room — happen all the time. While looking shaken or embarrassed may be the typical human reaction, you need to always appear in control. Your audience is looking to you for leadership, and an unflappable response to unexpected interruptions speaks volumes.
If you’re someone who is easily caught off guard, use this week to make a list of “what’s the worst that could happen” scenarios. Then brainstorm ways to handle them, from carrying a spare projector bulb to creating a list of one-line humorous responses. You’ll find that a bit of preparation goes a long way to boosting your ability to handle the unexpected.
Week 2: May 16 – 22
A New Creative Approach
The expression “familiarity breeds contempt” definitely applies when you feel so comfortable, so secure in your content and your skills, that you’re no longer truly in the moment and actively engaging your audience.
This week, consider new ways you can convey information to your listeners. Can you try a different presentation format, like a hands-on workshop instead of a straight lecture? Or try the highly structured Pecha Kucha style, in which presenters speak to 20 slides, each shown for 20 seconds, for a total presentation time of 6 minutes 40 seconds.
Week 3: May 23 – 31
Thinking the Thought
Audience members can always detect when a speaker is mindlessly reading a script or slides, and their reaction is to shut down, too. After all … if you’re not engaged in your material, why should they be?
Take some time this week to review your content. Think about what you’re saying, how you’re saying it, and the impact it’s having on your listeners. Tweak a favorite line or two, interject new examples, and add some interactivity like a rhetorical question to freshen things up.
Though self-assessment is not always easy, it’s always eye opening. Take the 21-day communication challenge to transform your approach and achieve desired results next time you step up to speak. Be sure to share your progress, tips and stories for inclusion in an upcoming issue and be eligible to win a $25 Amazon gift certificate.