In today’s environment, it is important that you are confident and comfortable in front of your audience. And while many speakers believe that being confident is difficult, it need to be! In fact, here are a dozen ways to be a confident speaker:
- Prepare, prepare, prepare!
- Practice in front of a full-length mirror, for small groups. Join Toastmasters.
- Be positive. “I am a good / great speaker/trainer.”
- Expect to be nervous. Deep breathe, exercise by walking, stretch, visualize your success, meditate — make anxiety your ally. Increase your energy; heighten your awareness.
- Focus on your audience. It is not about you. You are there to help your audience.
- Simplify. Use your time wisely and keep your presentation clear and simple so that your audience can understand what you are saying.
- Connect with your audience. Look people in the eye, one at a time, as you speak to them. The audience wants you to succeed.
- Act confident. Smile. Hold your chin up. Stick your chest out. When you do this, you will feel confident. Remember, you are the authority on the subject and they want to hear what you have to say.
- Use humor wherever possible.
- Offer the right message mix (inform, persuade, entertain, interact).
- Establish credibility by use of facts, statistics, stories.
- Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, said, “Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.”
This is a guest blog post by Sandra Schrift, president/owner of CoachSchrift and Associates, a San Diego based consulting, training and coaching firm.
Since 1996, Sandra has been coaching speakers who want to become highly paid professional speakers as well as executives and business professionals who want to develop persuasive presentations.