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A Lesson Worth Sharing

Last Updated on Thursday, 30 July 2015 12:53 Written by Pam Chambers Monday, 23 January 2012 03:25

As guest speakers, how we are introduced to our audiences is our responsibility. I learned that the hard way when I was introduced by an otherwise charming 80+ year old man as “the gal who teaches people how to talk.” Oops. I guess he forgot to bring the written introduction I had sent a couple of weeks ahead of time. Oops. I guess I forgot to bring a copy with me and hand it to him so he could read it.

95% of the time, the person who introduces me stands behind the lectern and reads the bio that can be found on my website. Obviously, I approve of the content, since I’m the one who wrote it. This approach allows me to control the reciting of my credentials, thereby establishing me as an expert in my field.

But fate (a-hem: my carelessness) once again reminded me of a lesson worth sharing: always take charge of how you are presented to your audience.

Recently I was introduced by a leader who stood in front of his people, turned to me, and asked, “What’s your name again?” “Pam Chambers, presentation coach.” “Ok, well, she’s going to help us with our presentations.”

How we set the stage largely determines our outcome. In this case, the results were mediocre.

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A Speaker’s Most Sought-After Trait

Last Updated on Thursday, 30 July 2015 12:53 Written by Pam Chambers Monday, 2 January 2012 09:14

Each January, I encourage those in my circle to select a Word for the Year. This word should provide guidance and clarity as we make important decisions and choose courses of action. What if we went one step farther and chose a Word for the Year that would help us become better speakers?

Recently, at the first session of a Level I Presentation Course, I asked each participant to write one word that identified a trait they most wanted to develop. There were ten people in the class. Seven chose the word “Confident.” (The other words were “Commanding,” “Credible,” and “Approachable.”)

With sincere confidence I said, “If you come to each class and use the tools you’ll learn here, I can promise that you’ll get what you just asked for.”

And so it was.

If you have confidence as a speaker, you need never fret over such questions as: What if someone knows more than I do? What if someone walks out on me? What if I run out of time?

When you have the right tools and know how to use them, you will be a confident speaker.

As a speaker, what’s your Word for the Year?

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