There is untapped opportunity waiting when you or someone from your company is asked to present at a conference, or be part of an expert panel at an industry luncheon. However, too often this opportunity to put your organization in the spotlight is lost in a “blah” presentation. If the person speaking is not committed to their preparation, then why present at all?
Many business executives believe they can wing it when it comes to speaking in public. I have coached executives on their speaking skills, and regularly find that most assume they are good speakers because they are knowledgeable about their subject. However, knowing a topic does not make one skilled at conveying information.
My mantra is “Just because someone is smart, or has done something cool, it does not mean they belong on the stage.” There is a big difference between mastering a concept and being able to communicate your message and inspire others. It takes time and dedicated effort to learn how to properly present and each speech requires hours of preparation to ensure you are delivering maximum value to an audience.
Presentations Skills can be your company’s SECRET WEAPON. Too few business people make learning to present a priority, and thus your team can run circles around the competition every time someone is given the honor of being on a stage. It is called “Giving a Speech,” so you should remember that your presentation is a “gift” to the audience. If you think it is all about the speaker, the audience will know they are bystanders.
Even some of those who speak regularly (and professionally) are not coachable. They assume the positive feedback from their audiences is proof of their abilities. We live in a polite society, so many dull speakers hear “great job” after they finish a talk. This mistakenly leads them to thinking they are successful at speaking.
The best speakers I know are always looking to enhance their platform skills. I regularly seek input from more experienced peers and watch videos of my presentations. Constant commitment to improvement is the only way someone can get better with their speaking skills.
Are you sure that the people in your company are ready to take the stage? Do you care about how well they reach an audience when they speak? Let me ask this another way… Do you care about finding new business and growing the brand of your company? If you want to be seen as the expert and a thought leader, then make presentation skills a priority. It can be your secret weapon in a competitive world.
Thom Singer is a professional speaker, corporate trainer, and consultant. He regularly works with executive teams to help them enhance their presentation skills. www.ThomSinger.com