Speaker Resolutions for 2012: 10 Tips from the Podium
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Posted by: Eileen N. Sinett
Speaker Resolutions for 2012:
10 Tips from the Podium
By Eileen N. Sinett
you want to add polish at the podium, enjoy your speaking experience and
influence your listeners’ attention, then set the presentation bar high with
these 2012 Speaking Resolutions!
1. Begin your speech
Experience three seconds of silence! If you think this is crazy, think
again. All communication begins from
silence. On the page, it’s white space
or margins; with speaking, it’s not speaking.
Look (without saying anything) before you speak. Like a conductor of an orchestra, you are in
charge and set the tone. Allow yourself a few seconds to connect inwardly as
you look out at the crowd. Your
listeners will appreciate this "verbal white space.”
2. Know how you will start.
Learn, (not necessarily memorize) how you will start your talk. Try
on a new way of opening, i.e., a rhetorical question, striking fact, or
personal story, rather than the usual, bland, "I’m So and So and I’m going
to talk about "X.” Reveal yourself
through an anecdote or short story that allows the audience to know you as a
person and bridge this story to your focus.
Commit to practicing this opening at least once, aloud, sometime before
your presentation to minimize "start-up” anxiety!
3. Stand still for your first two or three
sentences. You will look in control, maximize your image and presence and
project strength (even if you feel nervous).
Reducing movement at the beginning of your talk also helps your audience
to listen with focus, (btw, standing still does not mean standing stiffly).
4. Build your talk around 3 ideas and limit
your speech to 20 minutes. The average
person remembers 3-5 ideas plus or minus 2.
By batching your concepts in threes, you facilitate and sustain audience
5. Embrace less is more, when it comes
to visual aids. Reduce text, read less and be less
slide-dependent. Be able to overview
your presentation highlights without a single slide!
6. Hear yourself as you speak!
You will become more conscious of
what you say and how you say it. As a
result, your self-awareness, presence and connection will grow.
Stop worrying about your hands! Let them be! Focus on your
passion and your hands will gesture in a way that is natural for you.
8. Control-Alt-Delete any negative
any judgmental inner chatter to create space for something neutral or positive.
9. Refrain from running "off-stage” if you ask
for questions and you don’t get any
(a very awkward moment indeed). Start the question-ball rolling by saying
something like, "Sometimes people ask me…….”
Then answer that question and ask the audience again if they have
any questions (usually they do).
Have the final word!
After the Q & A, close your presentation by reiterating your key message -
what you want the audience to most remember.
These will be the last words they hear, so make them clear and concise
and deliver them with confidence!
you are a professional who wants a competitive advantage, become as skilled a
presenter as you are an expert in your field. It's important, both for your
message and your business.
best practices are just some of the many tips that can be found in Eileen’s
book, Speaking that Connects. Eileen
N. Sinett is an author, coach-consultant and keynote speaker. Her business,
Eileen N. Sinett Communications, provides customized programs for leaders,
executives and entrepreneurs. Among her clients are Novo Nordisk, Johnson &
Johnson, and more. An active community volunteer, Eileen is Program Chair for
the American Conference on Diversity, Mercer Regional Chapter. She earned a
Bachelors of Science in Speech Pathology from Emerson College, and a MA in
Speech Correction from Kean University. Speaking
that Connects is Sinett’s unique presentation training brand, and she is
currently working on speaking project called DEPTH, (Delivering
Exceptional Presentations That Heal).