The Top 10 Fatal Flaws Frequently Found from the Podium
by Sandra Schrift
Be a speaker of influence, not control or guilt. With the privilege of the platform comes the awesome responsibility of motivating and influencing your audience to feel/think/act differently.
- No clear purpose for the presentation. What is the point and focus of the speech?
- Not starting and stopping on time. Be flexible and be able to cut the talk short if asked. Be in control.
- Not dressing appropriately. Always be a step above the audience. If it’s business casual, be a little dressier than casual.
- Not knowing the audience. Make sure you know what the audience expects.
- Not checking out your room. A/V equipment and seating for any potential problems. Give yourself enough time to make the room right for you.
- Not having good platform skills. Knowing your subject is not enough. You must have the ability to excite the audience and keep their interest.
- Not having rapport with the audience. Not doing your research to find out what really interests them. You will know that magic moment when the audience is nodding with approval.
- Not knowing when to stop. Too much information can not be absorbed by the audience.
- Not having enough information. The talk should have substance and knowledge of the client’s business.
- Not being sensitive to the audience. Do not use ethnic stories or off color remarks. Politics and religion should be avoided unless you are a member of the clergy.
POINT: The effectiveness of a talk is whether the audience enjoyed it and found it useful. Did the talk influence their behavior positively and productively once they returned to their jobs?