This week a non technical post, besides focusing on keeping my technical skills on a high level and sharing all kinds of information via this blog I have a goal to get on stage more often. To get better at speaking I followed a seminar about public speaking from one of the best in the field Andy Harrington. The seminar I went to was a preview seminar what he does and what courses he has. With this preview he lifted the curtain what you will learn in his public speaking course.
The most important things I learned from it was how to setup your story and how the top speakers do this and even Hollywood is doing it in the top selling movies. What he told was fairly simple to grasp and gave me a great understanding why some of my presentations are going great and others did not. He off course just lifted the curtain and with his course he is going much deeper into this with a lot more practice.
I also got from this that the mindset of yourself is as important as the content you are trying to share. When your presentation does not resonate with your own values the audience will notice this and you will have a hard time presenting. In my current role I do more presentations within the companies and there I feel at ease with what I present. In the public area I do not have a lot of experience yet and I am most of the time a bit more nervous while presenting. I got some great pointers to work with for speaking in public.
One of them was how you interact with the audience. In school I learned that is was best to just look over the audience so it feels for the audience that you look at them, but this is the opposite what you should do according to Andy. He was telling that you should look at the audience 1 at the time in a way that you look at 1 person and when you have a pause in your sentence to look at someone else on a different side of the room. This might feel strange for some presenters. When I look back I have seen both in different presentations. And when the presenter really looks at the different people in the audience you feel more involved in the presentation. A great example of this was a massive seminar I attended in London earlier this year. The presenter here was Anthony Robbins, his seminar had over 7000 people in the room and in the 4 days I felt involved in everything he presented. I also saw the same with a few presenters of the key note at Microsoft Ignite, but others did not.
He also gave some great insight how to build a great presentation, some I already knew and some where new to me. The thing I already knew is that you must first create you story you want to tell and then if necessary create a slide deck. The thing I did not know was that it is better to know the questions you want to answer during the presentation and remember that instead of trying to remember the complete story you want to tell.
A other thing that is very important is that the presentation needs to be in your line of values, if that is not the case your audience will notice and you probably will feel awkward of doing the presentation. The seminar I did from Anthony Robbins in the beginning of this year can help you discover that. This seminar is Unleash the Power Within and this gave some great insight in myself and I can recommend that to everyone.
If you want to know more about this seminar or the others I have followed leave a comment and I will do my best to answer it.