Presentation & Public Speaking Skills Archives - The Pickering Group

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Easier said than done: Owning who you are

Courage trumps confidence. Where confidence is a feeling (and I don’t know about you, but I haven’t yet mastered total control over my feelings!) courage is a decision – a choice we make about how we show up.

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Who wants to present with impact, inspire confidence, and get results?

2022 has been a year… and it’s not over yet. We’ve seen the end of lockdowns, vaccine passports and (for the most part) masks. We’ve reopened our borders – welcoming visitors and losing Kiwis with itchy feet. We’ve seen the cost of living rise, and pressures on businesses around staffing, supply chains and navigating a contracting economy. But still we battle on.

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Practice makes near perfect

How many times do you typically practice a presentation before you deliver it? Be honest. If your answer is “I’m lucky to practice once” then you’ll be joining the majority of those who filled out my course pre-attendee survey. Yep, most others practice only once, or not at all, before a big presentation. And frankly, it can show.

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May I have your attention please?

Early on in my career, I took it personally when someone would yawn, fidget, or glaze over while I was presenting. Never mind how much animation and enthusiasm I was bringing to the room, or how well I’d prepared my content to be compelling, I’d see this sometimes. And it really bummed me out.

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Presenting is unique from other forms of public speaking

Whatever your level, great presenting skills are an essential part of leadership. Those who can communicate effectively and demonstrate solid persuasive speaking skills go further. They’re able to engage others with their ideas and, in today’s increasingly critical knowledge economy, they’re better recognised and rewarded as a result

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Informing isn’t presenting – why some speakers fall flat

Have you ever sat through a presentation only to realise the next day that you can’t even remember what was said?

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Your living room stories belong in your presentation – here’s why.

If I asked you to recall the most memorable speaker you’ve seen, who springs to mind? Some of my favourites include the late Sir Ken Robinson, Brene Brown, and Margaret Heffernan. What makes them, and likely the ones you have enjoyed too, so compelling is that they are also great story-tellers.

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The thing that stands between you and where you’re going

You’re up there with all eyes on you for one reason: to get your audience to that golden destination where they’re compelled to act or adopt your big idea. I call it point B and it’s the purpose of your presentation.

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Point B: The Destination – aka ‘Where are you going with this?’

You know the well-worn phrase; ‘it’s the journey that matters, not the destination’. While it’s a good mantra for life, when it comes to presentations, the destination – your prime objective – is king. Without precise coordinates, presentations have no direction, and waste the audiences fuel on waffle, leading them down the road to nowhere.

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A is for Audience

When we’re worried about presenting, it’s common to focus on ourselves – our worries, how we’re feeling. But the most important element in any presentation is your audience. You’re there to connect your ideas to them in a way that elicits some form of action. Your presentation is for them, not for you.

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