Public speaking is the #1 fear among Americans (death ranks #7) and I certainly share that sentiment. Prior to speaking in front of a group, my stomach churns, my palms sweat, my breath quickens. Even worse, I often don’t elicit much of a response from the audience at all. Think crickets chirping.
One of the perks of being a Daxko team member is having a generous professional development budget to improve professionally. The marketing and sales teams decided we would all benefit from presentation training, so we pooled our funding to bring in Dan Sapp of Dan Sapp Inc.
After two days of intensive training, my mind was blown…in a good way. Dan taught us that every communication is a chance to incite change in our audience (he’s termed it the Delta Model).
Below are a few takeaways that will help me truly connect with my audience and hopefully bring about the change I desire:
- Recognize and embrace your authority. Realize that you have a right to be here at this moment taking up time and space in front of your audience. You aren’t wasting their time, so own this opportunity to truly inspire and connect with the people in front of you.
- Give the gift of silence to your audience. Sometimes the most powerful thing you can give to your audience is silence to ponder what you’ve just told them. Read more from Dan about the power of the pause here.
- Ruthlessly edit your visuals. As a marketing maven, this one is tough for me! Don’t bombard your audience with visuals just because that’s what you’ve always done. Instead, only use visuals when you need to:
- Simplify a complexity
- Turn something theoretical into something real
- Elicit an emotional response
- Overcome a language barrier
- Reinforce an important point. (Keep in mind–If you reinforce everything, you reinforce nothing.)
I’m certainly a work in progress, but look forward to putting these ideas into practice.
I want to hear from you…when has a speaker moved you to change? What did he or she do (or not do) that spurred you to action? Share in the comments below.