SOLIDGUY Needs Your Assistance: He Is Delivering a Speech On Friday And He's Shy.......

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Oct 02, 2008 2:47 AM GMT
    SOLIDGUY, one of my close RJ friends and buddies I consult, talk to by phone and will hopefully will know for many years and he needs your help!

    He is in Florida at a conference at this moment and on Friday will have to give a speech to about 100 participants. He's nervous, he hates the idea because Greg is a shy person. I'm sure he will do a fantastic job.

    Why positive things can you suggest to Greg to get through this speech??
    (and he tells me he'll even be on the large screen, so the participants can see him better).


    GOOD LUCK GREG!!
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    Oct 02, 2008 2:53 AM GMT
    I'm not sure if this advice will help, but something I like to do (sometimes) when speaking in front of people is take my glasses off so people's faces are a little blurry.

    This way I can look directly at the audience without being distracted by their faces/gestures. But for that to work you need to a) have poor vision b) not have to read from notes or teleprompter.
  • Hagan_F

    Posts: 210

    Oct 02, 2008 2:54 AM GMT
    I offer my good thoughts as well. When I first had to present in front of a large group a friend of mine advised me to stand at the door and greet people, shake hands, ask questions. That way they didn't seem to be "strangers". It helped. It didn't get rid of the nerves completely but it kept me from knocking knees and dry mouth. Good luck to you!
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    Oct 02, 2008 2:58 AM GMT
    I used to get nervous speaking in front of crowds. So I tried that old bit of advice and imagined everyone in the audience naked.

    And I tell you, once you get a huge boner in front of an audience nothing will make you nervous ever again.
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    Oct 02, 2008 3:06 AM GMT
    Solid, you are a real good guy. If you just relax and be natural, everybody will love you and your presentation will be received splendidly.

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Oct 02, 2008 3:07 AM GMT
    Caslon7000 saidSolid, you are a real good guy. If you just relax and be natural, everybody will love you and your presentation will be received splendidly.



    Cas I was hoping an lolcat would also give Greg some advice.

    LOLicon_biggrin.gif
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    Oct 02, 2008 3:09 AM GMT
    cat ... stay off of the tequila

    cat ... who knows, we all might come to give you moral support

    cat ... and dont try to fake a way out

    oh who am I kidding....

    cat
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    Oct 02, 2008 4:03 AM GMT
    I have had the chance to engage in some public speaking. I just get up and do it. There is no real cure. I am actually so shy I can't stand it. I don't know why either. I shun crowds, walk a different trail and seek an odd path. When I have to put the brass balls on I do. Last week I had to give a presentation so here's what I did to get prepared...

    1. Dress for Success.

    If you look good you will feel good. I have my shirts starched and I have the best suit I can afford topnav_logo.gif

    and get a killer tie.

    2. I pump my self up.
    I tell myself that I can get up there and knock their socks off!!

    3. Some Red Bull or Caffeine.
    ..not to much...keeps my mind focused along with some other good natural supplements.
    st_redbull_f.jpg
    4. Know your shit.
    Be prepared and get up there and tell em like it is.

    5. Be JAMES BOND.
    I use this in my head. I say BOND...JAMES...BOND....After all...I am 007.... lol Smooth...suave....charming....Perfect in almost every way....well that was Marry Poppins... LOL
    polo_mbusiness_header.jpg
    http://www.ralphlauren.com/shop/index.jsp?categoryId=1760781&ab=global_men

    I maybe SHY, but I have a boat load of courage and I am brave!
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    Oct 02, 2008 4:21 AM GMT
    I guess I'm one of the few people that actually enjoys talking in public, I know it can be a nerve wracking experience so my advice is:

    Try to relax, people can feel if you are anxious or nervous

    Come up with a joke (would help if it has been "audience" tested, nothing worse than making a joke and no one laughs or even chuckles) and anecdotes.

    Depending on the type of event it is, try to engage the audience. Ask questions, make them feel included, this will also keep them on their toes.

    If he has a powerpoint slideshow, try to not read verbatim. The powerpoint slides are just an aid, like a cue card. Like the person above me pointed out, make sure to know the material. One thing that helps me is to go over the slides and in my mind go through how I'll elaborate.

    Try to sound natural, not too rehearsed or stiff.

    Dress to impress, dressing up usually boosts confidence levels and audience members always enjoy eye candy!

    Good luck!
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    Oct 02, 2008 5:18 AM GMT
    When I have to give a major presentation, the first thing I do is make sure I'm uber-prepared (I know, 'uber' is so 1995...). Second thing is to make sure I look damn good. It's a confidence thing. Third, I show up a bit early, if I don't know the people, and try to circulate and chat a bit with folks -- if it's a big crowd, I at least chat a bit with people in the front few rows. Getting there and chatting also gives you a chance to gauge the audience a bit. Finally, I just refuse to take myself too seriously - it's not so much a presentation as it is a performance. I can't stand still at a podium -- I have to gesticulate, move around a bit, and get animated. I find that if I entertain and impress myself, not only do I feel pretty damn good about what I'm doing, but I'm doing a better job of entertaining and impressing the audience, too.

    That works for me, at least. I always keep in mind, too, that it's a given I'm gonna be nervous for the first few minutes...but as soon as I loosen up and get into the 'act,' I always feel better.

    Anyways, that's one strategy. Good luck. Just look sharp, be sharp, and act like your balls are the size of cantaloupes.
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    Oct 02, 2008 5:41 AM GMT
    It took me two years of toastmasters club types of classes before I was comfortable with it. But I would say to really know your material and convince yourself that your life does not depend on your speech being perfect. It's OK to make mistakes.
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    Oct 02, 2008 5:57 AM GMT
    ActiveAndFit saidIt took me two years of toastmasters club types of classes before I was comfortable with it. But I would say to really know your material and convince yourself that your life does not depend on your speech being perfect. It's OK to make mistakes.


    You can make a flub....just make sure your nose is not running and if it is...have a handkerchief.....
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    Oct 02, 2008 6:09 AM GMT
    I'm pretty nervous when I have to speak in public but I've had to do it a good bit so I've developed some strategies that work for me. First, I convince myself that I know more on the topic than most anyone in the audience (this is actually true when I speak on a topic, but I have to still keep reminding myself of this). THe second thing I do is try to downplay the importance of everything, including myself, the audience, the speach, etc. I think I've talked about this somewhere in this forum before but the way I go about this is by saying "Well, these people are just pieces of DNA really, as am I, nothing that happens really matters, just a few molecules interacting is all." Of course you can use your own variation of downplaying importance, but this works for me for most social situations in at least getting things started.

    Good luck!
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19133

    Oct 02, 2008 6:19 AM GMT
    Greg, I know the feeling...I hate, hate, HATE speaking to groups, which is why I rarely do it cuz I get so nervous. Just get up there and make believe you're Barack Obama -- you'll do great! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif
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    Oct 02, 2008 6:31 AM GMT
    Solidguy, I'd actually advise against telling a joke (tested or not). Joke-telling is serious business, and usually screws you up when nobody but you laughs. Unless you're Johnny Carson and have a great follow-up to a joke that bombs.

    Instead, be observational and personal. I always try to learn the name of one good person (whose name I won't screw up) to "throw to" when I need to stall. As in, "I just met Cindy out in the lobby...hi Cindy!...and she thought that every point I'm about to make is the best material she's heard in years...no offense to the guy who just spoke before me...by the way, great presentation, Greg..."

    Seriously, don't say anything even remotely like the paragraph above. I was just demonstrating being observational and personal.

    Are you using a microphone? You must. A lapel microphone is best, which frees up your hands for slide-turning and gesturing. Get a good sound check first before you talk (actually say, "Testing, one, two, three, check check cash credit card money order seashells seashells shibboleth"). Nobody will understand you, but at least you'll get used to the idea of your voice coming from a box several meters away from you...or from under your lectern. If you get laughs for saying "seashells" don't dwell on the laughs, but look sternly at any laughers like you're surprised they aren't as serious about your presentation as you are.

    Your voice will not sound like you, but don't try to alter your voice. Instead, move the microphone away from your mouth and boost the gain volume (someone should help you with this) and talk strongly and clearly in your natural, strong and clear voice. Do not whisper (unless it's a fake whisper loud enough for the front row to hear) and do not talk in a lower voice. Get accustomed to the sound coming a microsecond after you breathe it, and understand that you have to keep talking and ignore the loud person's voice coming from the box.
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    Oct 02, 2008 6:40 AM GMT
    Just remember that the audience is there because they WANT to hear what you have to say. I've had to make any number of speeches before crowds large and small, and when I first step up to the podium, I take a deep breath while at the same time looking out into the crowd, and gently smiling. I actually vibe out to the audience that I'm pleased to be there and be given the opportunity to speak. I let that go on for maybe 3 or 4 seconds, not so long as to draw it out, but just the same kind of "Hi, nice to see ya!" smile that I'd give an individual when shaking their hand, only to all of them at once, I also sometimes say, "Thank you," or "Hello! It's nice to see you today," in a firm, friendly voice, and that often brings an audience into your corner. But that first pause, when I'm smiling, and making eye contact with numerous members of the audience, makes the audience very subtly lean forward, as if they're getting closer to hear my words.
    Basically, it causes the audience to subconsciously LIKE you, and when they like you, you own them. Remember, you're in charge up there, and if they want to hear what you have to say, you're halfway home.

    You don't need any silly tricks, like imaging them naked. Just be honest, be glad to be there, and the audience will be yours!
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    Oct 02, 2008 6:47 AM GMT
    Oh, another thing...

    Always give your listeners updates on your progress. Actually, only once. Like after a particularly long-winded part of your presentation, inform them that you only have 94 more slides.

    That always shakes them up. Offer a cup to anyone who has to pee.
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    Oct 02, 2008 7:43 AM GMT
    Greg(Solidguy), a few tips (& some repetitions)

    1. As others have said make sure prepared, but also remember that you are being asked to deliver a speech, so they (the organisers) have already registered the fact that you know your stuff... you need to remember that yourself!

    2. If you get a chance practice (no more than 3 times) in front of mirror. Why? Because when you speak out aloud (again as has been pointed out) you will think that your voice sounds different (and sometimes it does). I deliver presentations all the time as part of my job and i can tell you that my presentation voice is very different to my conversation voice. Why no more than 3 times, well one it gets boring and two you may become hyper critical of yourself and your style. The first time will be a shock and the second and third times you can concentrate somewhat on delivery... ensuring as far as you can not to be deliver in a monotone, but change emphasis when you are coming to an important point in your presentation, but also to ensure that you do not speak too fast and/or mumble because you are nervous.

    Before i was let loose in court some aeons ago we had formal presentation advice sessions and we were videoed.... and it was embarrassing. But the playback highlighted some very good points (i'm not suggesting that you video yourself (doesn't sound like you have the time anyway)) but if the organisers of the conference do video the proceedings, get a copy and watch yourself again - but again, not to be hyper critical, but just to see how you are in that situation, because i suspect that you will be asked to do this again and again and you will want to improve. Even better if you can get someone whose opinion you trust and value to watch it with you and listen to what they have to say. Needless to say when i watched my video and received the constructive criticism, i rarely ever made the same mistakes again... i had the video as backdrop to continually haunt meicon_biggrin.gif

    3. The practice will also help you time yourself as you will have been given an allotted time frame.

    4. On Friday before the presentation, focus on breathing.... Sounds silly be you will be surprised how when you are nervous, your breathing quickens or you hold your breath and that directly affects the way you deliver your speech.. so even while giving the presentation remember to breathe icon_biggrin.gif

    5. Penultimate point - nerves are a good thing, providing you control them. If you are not nervous before a presentation, then most likely it will be bad in some way shape or form... bitter experience has taught me that!!!!

    6. Finally... and this really sounds stupid... but it's not.... TRY YOU BEST TO ENJOY IT! If you can manage to relax.. even just a little bit and dissipate some nerves, enough to allow you to give a storming presentation!!!!

    GOOD LUCK
  • glenn77

    Posts: 17

    Oct 02, 2008 7:49 AM GMT
    Imagine everyone naked... hmm no that's no help. Alcohol... lots of it! icon_confused.gif Hmm nah, not that either!

    I'm sure he'll do fine! I stutter, and even I've given some great speeches. It might of taken a while... but hey, they were great!
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Oct 02, 2008 7:54 AM GMT
    Talking in front of a crowd is daunting
    But you have to remember that everybody there wants you to succeed
    They don't want to hear a painful lecture
    So just give them the best you got


    Know your material
    Know that you're the best man for the job
    and keep thinking to yourself ... this is my moment to shine

    dammit icon_wink.gif
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    Oct 02, 2008 8:21 AM GMT
    I used to sweat and shake and stutter when I had to speak in front of people. I'm now a lecturer with sometimes hundreds of students. I feel your pain, but remember the the 6Ps.

    Prior
    Preparation
    Prevents
    Piss
    Poor
    Performance

    Those, my dear Greg, are words to live by. Good luck!
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    Oct 02, 2008 8:35 AM GMT
    the only advice I could give you is somthing I learned from my theatre experience, giving monologues, public speeches etc, is dont give anyone direct eye contact, focus your gaze between their eyes....it still gives the illusion that you are looking at them in the eyes...so it leaves the audience fully engaged, and attentive, makes you apear more confident(it will make whatever it is that you are presenting more interesting/thought provoking/invoking), and of course is less distracting for you, so you can focus&concentrate on what you are sayingicon_cool.gif
  • metalxracr

    Posts: 761

    Oct 02, 2008 8:54 AM GMT
    I've had to do this so many times. Just don't think much about the audience as there to criticize you. This is what I told myself when I used to get nervous:

    When I'm sitting in the audience listening to someone give a speech, I'm just there to listen. I'm not there to judge them in anyway, and sometimes when they fumble a word or two, everyone forgets it 3 words later.

    So just relax, no one is pressuring you but yourself. Don't sweat it and you'll do fine.
  • relyt

    Posts: 38

    Oct 02, 2008 9:07 AM GMT
    I hate needles more than anything else in life, so when I have to speak in front of a group I always say to myself "well at least i'm not having a blood test" haha, seems to work.

    Otherwise the rest of the stuff people have said, avoid jokes, take your time, have water ready and just do it. Generally once you're going you're right.
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    Oct 03, 2008 5:08 PM GMT
    Very good advice here - I just saw this and read what each R.J. brother contributed. Greg - you'll do well - you've told me how prepared you are - you've got the subject matter down and know it frontwards and backwards and are ready for any questions at the end. You're ready!

    I've given years of speeches and participated in board room meetings so I've been well trained at both podium speaking and working a crowd with a mike and no podium. Kind of scary at first to look out and see all those people looking up at you! Knowing your material and looking good is key. I always get a shiny forehead so just before I go "on" I pop into a mens room and quickly check my forehead with a tissue - then I re-tuck my shirt - it makes me feel all put together. I comb my hair once more so I have all the confidence in the world. Now - get out there - pop onto the stage as though you've got a big, happy event to go to later that night. It gives me a lift to do that. When at the podium - be sure and look at the people - look way left and right - smile - enjoy yourself - be happy - a little self-effacing - open with a small joke if appropriate. Go have fun!

    Good luck Greg!