Too many presenters make the mistake of putting pressure on themselves by believing they have to entertain their audience. They lose sight of the point – they are the messenger, not the hero! They allow their nerves to overwhelm them so they become stiff, awkward, too quiet or too noisy, self conscious or arrogant, boring or irritating.
As I said in my last post, to be successful, your attention must be on your audience, not yourself. You are there to help them arrive at certain conclusions. And since each audience is different, then it’s as well for you to plan for the audience you are going to come in front of. If you do this, your nerves will fade.
Focusing on your audience and their needs will get you the best results.
- Organise your information so it’s relevant to your audience and in a style that’s comfortable for them to hear. Use language that they’ll understand.
- You are their guide, mapping out what they can expect and when.
- Be their helper and support by welcoming their questions. Your role is to help them to understand what you are saying, understand their difficulties and accept their differing opinions.
- Be humble – you will repel them if you’re the arrogant expert. You aren’t Superman/woman and your audience is asking you to know everything. You will be forgiven for mistakes.
Your audience is willing you to succeed, not win Mastermind!