Tag: preparation

Public Speaking:  A Soft Skill That Needs a Solid Structure.

Public Speaking: A Soft Skill That Needs a Solid Structure.

Pace, coupled with a clear structure  is the secret to putting complex ideas into a format that is easy to understand.

Proper pace is needed as there is a delay between the words being spoken and the time it takes for them to be absorbed and understood.  Attention to diction and pronunciation helps to achieve a suitable pace. The narrative must be interspersed with pauses to give it space and allow it to breathe.

A structure that follows a sequential and logical format will free the minds of your audience to follow and be absorbed in what you are saying.

Here is an example of a structure that could be used  when you are unexpectedly asked to, “Say a few words,” on a topic you are familiar with but only have 10minutes to prepare.

Structuring Your 2 mins Speech. 

 Intro:

State:                           Your claim/argument/point of view/stance.

Explain.                      Why? Validate your claim.              .

 Body:

Main Point :               The essense of what you are saying.

Support material for main point: (Backup your claim with facts, statistics, quotes or stories).

  • Point 1:              Reinforce your claim with evidence.
  • Point 2:
  • Point 3:

 Conclusion:    

Wrap it up with a skillful conclusion. Reinforce your message in a memorable way.

An example of the structure being put into practice.

State: Paragliding is the most amazing thing you could ever do.

Explain: Who would like to fly like a bird? Leonardo Da Vinci did. In the 1500’s he designed and built some magnificent flying contraptions but was not quite able to realise his dream. Today anyone can learn to fly. Simply enroll for a beginners course at a paragliding school and within a week you’ll be doing a solo flight from a height of 800metres.

Main Point: Paragliding  is a skill which requires understanding and collaboration with the forces of nature. The air that surrounds us.

  • It brings with it an appreciation and respect for Nature.
  • Being in the mountains is beautiful and healthy.
  • The camaraderie. With my licence I could go to places like New Zealand and join up with groups going out for a weekend of camping and flying.

Conclusion: Paragliding besides being exhilerating requires total awareness to what is going on in the present and the ability to adapt to an ever changing invisible force-The Wind.

If you aim at creating something extraordinary and making it clear and understood, contact me on martin.jugmans@gmail.com or +32 498 523 649 on how to put business storytelling to work in your organisation.

How to Manage Public Speaking Anxiety.

fear-of-public-speaking

The skills in giving a great presentation lie in preparation and practice.

What are the most common fears of giving a presentation?

* Fear of what people might think.
* Fear of how one looks.
* Fear of losing the thread.
* Fear of being vulnerable/showing weakness.
* Fear of being insignificant/lack of self-confidence.
* Fear of people losing interest.
* Fear of being in the limelight.
* Fear of feeling intimidated by the audience.
* Fear of making a joke and people not laughing.
* Fear of the power of the moment.
* Fear of failure.
* Fear of success.

10 Ways to Overcome Your Fear of Giving Presentations.

1) Goal.
Get a clear idea of how you want your audience to feel at the end of your presentation and keep this in mind during the preparations. What exactly do you want to convey? It is also important to determine beforehand how you will feel during the presentation.

2) Know your audience.
Find out who will be attending and include references appealing to their specific interests.

3) Construct your presentation.
It is important here to imagine yourself actually doing the presentation. Where is the venue, what does the interior look like how will it be when the auditorium is full? Will there be a microphone, handheld or lapel model? How will the lighting be? How will you be dressed, what sort of hand and body movements will you be making to reinforce your overall message. How will your voice sound? What sort of visual aids will you be using and where will they be placed?

4) Act confident.
Even if nervous, start the presentation with full confidence in a clear and controlled manner. Prepare an intro that captures the audience’s attention. Invite curiosity, excitement, mystery, shock, amazement, the audience will love it.

5) Content.
Use logic and a coherent organisation. Make references to the sources of quotes. Research the subject adequately. When using visual aids make sure they can be clearly seen, always speak to the audience and not to the screen or object.

6) Emotion.
Be sincere and convey a strong sense of conviction. Show your own excitement about what you are talking about. Allow the audience to really feel what is happening, use personal stories and humorous examples to illustrate a point. This will keep your presentation interesting.

7) Conclusion.
Maintain a sense of confidence while wrapping up with a powerful conclusion that sums up the entire presentation. The end is what your audience is mostly likely to remember. Make sure it sticks.

8) Practice.
Practice from beginning to end using all the props. Ask someone to watch you and make a recording. Listen to feedback. Practice until notes are no longer needed. Practice adding expression by refining variations in voice, volume, rate and tone. Speaking in a clear voice will hold the audience’s attention.

9) Speaking skills.
Polish your skills by getting acquainted with Toastmasters International or a Speakers Association. Watch videos of famous speeches, comedians and presenters. Anyone can do it.

10) Breathing.
Before speaking keep your breathing steady. Feel a sense of gratitude for the having the privilege of doing the presentation. Having done a thorough preparation the presentation will flow and if any disturbances occur you are better equipped to deal with them. For now all you need remember is your opening lines.

The key to overcoming fear when giving presentations is to build confidence. Knowing what you are going to do and how you are going to do it will make the experience enjoyable.