It’s every speaker’s nightmare: you’re delivering a speech and someone (or more than one person) gets up and walks out. Did you do something wrong or say the wrong thing? It’s possible that you did something to caused the person to get up and walk out (and you’ll most likely know what you did right away), but in many cases, the reason for someone walking out has nothing to do with the speaker or the presentation itself.
Whenever you give a speech, people will inevitably give you feedback regardless of whether you’ve asked for it or not. Sometimes the feedback will be something you can actually put to use to improve your presentation. But frequently, it’s not helpful and in some instances can be harmful – especially if it gets you thinking about it (for one reason or another) to the point where it becomes a distraction.
I once heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result. Well I’d like to add a second definition: trying to please everyone. Trying to make everyone in a group happy ranges from difficult to impossible and the only guarantee you have is that you’ll wish you never tried.
This topic comes up frequently in both my public speaking and networking classes as people are concerned about what others think. I think we all have a natural tendency to focus on the audience members that aren’t paying attention to us during a speech or the folks at a networking event that say “it was nice to meet you – I see a client on the other side of the room” immediately after you introduce yourself.
In the United States, today is Thanksgiving. To many folks it’s a day of food and football. But its real purpose is a day to be thankful for what we have. Here are some tips for getting the most out your Thanksgiving Day (and if you live outside the US, you can still join in on the fun).
Be thankful for what you have:
This past week, I finished up a vacation at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. I had been there many times before (it was my 9th trip since 1982) and as always, I had a great trip. While I was on vacation, I couldn’t help but be amazed at how big an operation it is (I was treated to some interesting trivia throughout my trip) and at the following that the Disney brand has. It’s fascinating what you can learn by enjoying a box of popcorn and a cold drink while sitting on a bench in a theme park for half an hour.
My friend Steve Pavlina recently published a personal development book which I recently had an opportunity to read. If you’re not familiar with Steve, he’s a video game creator turned personal development blogger who has made quite a name for himself. Steve’s website (StevePavlina.com) gets over two million visitors per month.
When it comes to public speaking, and in particular the fear of public speaking, I’ve heard some wild things. “I wish I could give my speech in the dark.” “I wish I could be invisible when I have to give a speech.” I’ve yet to hear anyone say that they wish they could give a speech that no one can hear, so there’s obviously something about being seen by and audience that strikes fear in the hearts of many.
There are a number of things that cause the fear of public speaking but they generally fall into one of three categories: