Public Speaking Skills:
(Did he say 'pick' my audiences?)
Yes, I did say pick your audiences.
Some of you may not have this luxury because you must speak as part of your job to whomever your bosses tell you too. But for those of you that can pick your audiences, you will be able to move up faster with your public speaking skills.
When you are a beginning public speaker it is important for you to experience different types of audiences just FOR the experience. You will find that presenting to some audiences is more fun than others, and certain types of audiences enjoy your style more too. At this early stage of defining your public speaking skills it is important to take many different audiences to broaden your skill level.
As you climb the public speaking skills ladder where the audiences are bigger, or more important to your career; the stakes are far higher, so you must learn to just say no.
Most top public speaking professionals don't accept every request to speak even if they are available, and the money is right.
Why? They pick their speaking engagements to put themselves in front of audiences whose profiles indicate the greatest chance of success. They are building a reputation of your public speaking skills, and a good reputation is worth more money in the long run.
If you are a highly technical presenter, you would not want to be speaking to a widget sales group at their annual retreat. Conversely, as a really fun retreat facilitator, you would not want to be speaking to a group of radar technicians who are only interested in performance data of the latest missile protection system.
Your knowledge of your own Dynamic Range when speaking in public will help you learn to pick your audiences better. Also in your ongoing effort to improve your public speaking skills it will expand your abilities so you are capable of handling a wider range of audiences.
I based Dynamic Range on the same concept that is used to rate stereo equipment. Dynamic range in the electronics world means the ability to reproduce soft sounds as well as loud ones.
I have expanded on this to include several other parameters that are
important to a speaker. These include:
The first step to use this system is to evaluate yourself on each parameter.
Many people have trouble with this, so as a professional with good public speaking skills it might be time to call in an objective third party like a speaking coach or other professional presenter to watch you present or to review several of your tapes.
What professional athlete do you know who excels without a coach? What professional in any field excels without a coach? If your going to have good public speaking skills, you too need a coach. Find one, use one (or more), learn from one, profit from one.
A piece of advice, please try to avoid using friends for this initial evaluation because they will be reluctant to tell you the truth. And further, ask yourself honestly, is your friend a professional coach with honed public speaking skills in the area you seek training?
Quick Fixes -- Here are some ways you can increase your public speaking
skills range in a hurry.
When you have the option, pick audiences that give you the greatest chance of success.
Does an olympic runner enter every race? Or does he or she practice and prepare for the big races?
Thinking like a professional is part of mastering your public speaking skills.
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