So much of business comes down to communication, and while you might be adept at communicating with others during the normal working day, how are your presentation skills? When it comes to developing executive presence, having well-honed public speaking skills certainly shows you to be a great communicator.
If you are asked to speak at a seminar or conference, or if you are called upon to address your entire workforce, do you have the public speaking ability to do yourself or your company justice?
Get ready to know six amazing public speaking skills:
- Make Eye Contact – If you’ve heard that the best place for your eyes to rest when you are speaking publicly is the back of the room – ignore this advice. It might work for musicians on stage, but when you are speaking rather than singing, you need to try and make a connection with your audience. That means making eye contact, but don’t allow your eyes to frantically scan the room. Simply focus on making a little eye contact with each or most of the people in the room. Make your way around, and ensure that your audience knows you are aware of them.
- Speak Steady – Speaking in a frantic manner is a sure fire way to show the audience that you are not at ease. If you want to exude confidence, one of the ways to project an unrushed swagger is to talk slowly and deliberately. Don’t dive straight into your talk – try leaving a few seconds from the moment you walk on stage to when you actually begin. Compose yourself and take a deep breath. And ensure that you leave adequate pauses in between the various sections of your talk.
- Be A Storyteller – Who doesn’t enjoy a good yarn? If you can, make sure you include some entertaining or revealing stories in your talk. Told well, they can help to keep the audience engaged, and ensure that your message hits home as required. Remember that capturing your audience can be more important than trying to talk up your own experience and knowledge, in order to prove your credentials.
- Never Overload The Audience – You might have plenty to say, but you are not going to be able to pack in everything possible on a given subject in the space of your talk. For this reason, it makes sense to keep your agenda simple but powerful, concentrating on really distilling your key points. People can only absorb so much information, and much of it might be forgotten by the next day, so do your best to avoid stuffing.
- Avoid The Hard Sell – If you are invited to represent your company and give a talk, you have two choices. You could use the opportunity as a chance to advertise your product or service, or you could actually try to give the audience something of value. You might be surprised at how entertaining, informing, educating and delivering real insights can promote your product or service more effectively than talking about it. Why? Because if you give genuine value, you can become respected as a thought leader, and this reflects well on your brand. Sales talk, on the other hand, can be seen as desperate or disrespectful
- Q&A Are Powerful – A quick question and answer session at the end of your talk is a good idea for a number of reasons. Firstly, it offers the opportunity to address any follow-up queries related to what you have said. It also gives you a clue who has engaged with the talk the most and identifies individuals who it might be worth speaking to in more depth.
To be able to take to the stage and deliver any kind of speech, public talk or presentation means to be ready to show your executive presence. Those are just a few pointers on how you can get better when addressing an audience. Like many things, practice can make perfect, so make sure that you grab those speaking opportunities with both hands!
As a TEDx and Global Professional Speaker with decades of experience, I can help you to focus upon the most important leadership attributes, and inspire you to develop your own unique formula for success mastery. Connect with me or book me to be inspired by developing an executive presence that leads to your own unique formula of success mastery, www.roitalks.com – firstname.lastname@example.org.