In this post, second in a series of 4 secrets to gaining confidence and getting excited about public speaking, I present secret #2.
The second secret that will help you overcome the jitters and make more money by public speaking is ….
Public Speaking Secret #2 – Get a handle on the logistics
Understanding the logistics of your speaking event is crucial to your confidence as a public speaker. Rehearsing the event in your mind even before the event happens will help your preparation. It will also help you create your Plan B ready if crisis strikes-and it will!
To follow are some potential logistics issues and what to do about them:
1. Equipment malfunctions. If your presentation is in PowerPoint be sure to have handouts that you can work from in case of a power failure. I like to consider myself a belt and suspenders kind of girl when it comes to my presentations and if I think I may need one extension cord, I’ll pack two. By thinking ahead about the equipment you’ll need, it will help you pack back up gear in case of an equipment malfunction.
2. Equipment changes or missing equipment. Be prepared that the microphone you prefer to use may be switched out for another at the last minute. You must also be prepared for no microphone at all. When I realized that I wanted to do more public speaking in my career, I hired a voice coach to help me learn how to project since my voice is softer than some others. As a side note, I also used the services of this coach to help me rid myself of the regional accent I had so that people would not be distracted by my mid-Atlantic way of pronouncing things. One of the things I want you to notice when you travel is to tune into the local news broadcasts in the areas you may be visiting and you will notice that the anchors and reporters do not have regional accents. They have probably worked with a voice coach to get rid of that New York or that Boston or Chicago or southern accent they might have. The thing is that regional accents as beautiful as they are (and I do think they are beautiful) can be distracting to an audience. People in the media, who want to be marketable in media markets across the country, will work hard to make sure to have a way of speaking that is neutral and appealing to the mass market of audiences. You may want to consider the same.
3. Presentation time of day. The time of day of your presentation is a big consideration during your preparation. For instance, after lunch is the kiss of death for speakers who are not seasoned. After lunch, people become sleepy because they are digesting a meal, so you need to make sure you have lots of activities – maybe reasons for the audience to move around – to keep it lively and keep the audience awake.
These were just a few of the potential logistics issues you could experience as a public speaker. But with proper preparation and forethought, getting a handle on the logistics will help you gain confidence with your public speaking.
What questions do you have about overcoming your fear of public speaking? Feel free to post your question by commenting below.