Presenting on the Fly – Discover a New World When You’re Not Afraid to Present

New team? New interns? Too many tasks than you can do in a day’s work? If so, stop and listen to this message: Overcome Fear of Public Speaking.

More and more of my clients tell me that they feel anxiety of public speaking – specifically ad hoc presentations. It makes sense.

When you have to do more with less, you have to be ready for anything. Unexpected meetings. Public speaking to clients and prospects. All when you least expect it. You must respond to urgent demands and critical opportunities – at a moment’s notice.

In this turbulent economy, the message is clear: get ready for anything. Conquer anxiety fear of public speaking. You must know how to confidently present to employees, customers and prospects.

Recently a client called our office asking for help. Her on-the-fly presentation needs ran the gamut including:

* How to train summer interns at a moment’s notice
* How to present to clients without any research support
* How to run virtual meetings to generate more leads
* How to answer tough questions about new procedures

You know the drill.

Her job title doesn’t include public speaking. But her real-life at work certainly does.

The only question is: do you have the right public speaking skills? Is your organization giving you the training you need?

This is just a hunch. But I bet your answer is: “No!”

At the same time organizations are demanding lean and mean, they are also cutting back on training and professional development. It’s basically foolish. But it’s happening all over the globe.

So, if you want to learn how to be fearless in ad hoc presentations, you need to take charge. It’s up to you to master the skills.

Use these 4-tips to overcome the fear of public speaking. These simple tips will help you reduce nervousness and get ready for anything.

1. Define Your Single Purpose
Define the purpose of each presentation. Even if you have to sketch this out on the back of an envelope or on a greasy napkin, over lunch. Get your ideas clear and concise.

A clear sense of purpose is absolutely essential if you want to give spontaneous presentations that look polished and professional.

2. Solve A Big Problem
What’s the big issue or problem your audience is facing? Think about each audience before you give your presentation.

Speak directly to the people who are in the room. Solving an important problem is the fastest way to adapt your story to every audience.

3. Share Personal Stories
When you share personal stories in an impromptu presentation, you achieve several goals at once.

First, you show up as a warm, friendly and open human being. Whether you are in leadership, research or sales, this is essential. This single trait helps your audience open up to your message.

Second, you have ultimate flexibility. You can pick and choose from different stories to match the situation. This is the easiest way to customize your message on the spot.

Third, you won’t be like any other presenter. You’re telling real stories from your own experience. No one else can possibly tell the same story.

4. Involve Your Audience
Engage participants with questions and spontaneous answers. Do this early and often and you’ll achieve a lively event everyone will remember.

If your work life is hectic and the demands are great, use these 4 tips and boost your skills. The more comfortable you are with presenting on the fly – the more you will succeed in your career

Sales Negotiation Psychology

Do not underestimate the need for your business to be an expert in negotiating skills. Your competitors are certainly enhancing their sales negotiation abilities, so you need to follow suit in order to keep pace. And if you want to get ahead of them – which I hope you do – then you need to invest in a very good negotiations training course for your employees.

The Importance of Negotiation Training

Sales professionals who can conduct effective sales negotiations are able to avoid losses, build profits, and close more sales. There is no doubt that success rates dramatically increase along with a sales executive’s business negotiation skills. Any person who strives for excellent results – not just average or good results – should invest in a very strong negotiation training program to fully enhance his or her skills.

What You Need to Know

As a sales professional, there are certain business negotiation skills that you absolutely must learn and cultivate. These include:

o Know how to find, pursue, and successfully close opportunities

o Effectively evaluate your sales negotiation performance and continually improve

o Learn how to ask the right questions to know what your counterpart needs

o Understand how to determine a counterpart’s sales negotiation style

o Know when to make concessions to ensure fairness and save value

o Build confidence through effective negotiation skills

o Enhance your cross cultural negotiating skills

o Know how to devise effective strategies to support the sales cycle

Invest in Consistent Improvement

Even if you think you possess strong negotiation skills already, you can never know enough. A good course in negotiating will teach you things that will increase your bottom line exponentially. There are so many nuances and fine points in the world of sales that no professional should ever be comfortable with his or her knowledge. You should always be seeking to improve yourself by partaking in negotiation training programs that will challenge you and build upon your abilities.

Be careful, though, to choose your negotiation course carefully. The most important consideration when choosing the best course for learning to become a better negotiator is the value of the course content. It’s important to research the depth the course material that is being offered. Some programs will claim to enhance your skill, but will instead give you a simple seminar that adds virtually no value at all. By carefully researching your options, it is possible to find a program that uses a comprehensive approach to engage you in the training and effectively build your skills in negotiating.

Tips for Presenting With Authority

It is not unusual to feel vulnerable about standing up to speak. The trick to delivering a successful speech or presentation is to create a perception of confidence to make your audience feel that you are in charge (irrespective of how you are actually feeling at the time).

Take your time
Think about the most powerful or influential speakers you’ve heard. As a general rule they will speak very slowly. This is actually very easy, and a great trick to earn yourself the confidence of the room. Barrack Obama speaks very slowly, and very clearly. His audience knows that he doesn’t need to rush; that he’s in control of the situation, and taking it at his own pace. Not only does it make the process of public speaking easier, it also simply sounds more controlled. And it’s easier to take-in what he’s saying.

Use your hands
Moving them doesn’t just help illustrate your point. It also helps release nervous energy, enabling you to speak more confidently.

Print your speech or presentation onto cue cards
Partly, this is useful for the simple reason that a cue card is smaller than a sheet of A4. However, actually the biggest thing you gain from having cue cards is the confidence they inspire in both you and your audience. From the audience’s perspective, you have clearly prepared for the speech you are giving; you have approached it in a professional way, and seemingly have done this before. From your own perspective, having the cards there at all will remind you that you are equipped to deliver this speech. Psychologically, this puts the ball in your court.

Hold your cue cards at about chest level and about half a foot in front of you
This way, when you look up at the audience, your speech will still be in your eye-line. You should not be presenting something purely by looking down at a piece of paper. Look up. Make sure the audience know that they’re your focal point; that they’re what’s important to you. When you watch a speech by somebody doing nothing more than looking down and reading from their notes, you can’t help but think they may as well just hand the piece of paper out and request half an hour’s silence for everybody to get up to speed. The reason they are watching a person, rather than reading a sheet of paper, is because they want someone to talk to them, to engage with them; someone in whom they can have confidence.

Glance, don’t read
You don’t have to know it word for word, but you certainly should only be presenting something to a room full of people, if you’ve practiced it beforehand. Speaking slowly enough to give you time to glance down at your notes between sound-bites will make a huge difference.

You may be shaking during the speech; you may even be terrified. However, what you must not be is miserable. Or, at least, you mustn’t look it. A frowning speaker is a reluctant speaker; someone out of their depths, perhaps. Nothing gets you the respect of a room like standing in front of 50, 60, 100 people and simply smiling back at them. Socially, it shows the audience that they’re in for a good time. Professionally, it shows you’ve got all the answers. Put it this way, if you were looking to buy a fridge-freezer from two men; one of whom was smiling and the other of whom was crying, who would get your business?

Perform a little
Pick relevant people to look in the eyes. If you’re talking about the company director, and he’s in the room, then look at him! You don’t need to bound round the stage, yelping, to get people’s attention. But you also won’t be interesting to watch simply standing still. These little touches can make the difference between a good presentation and a great one.

I hope you find these tips useful. Please call me on +44 20 8245 8999 if you would like help preparing for your next speech or presentation.