A ROOM FULL OF STRANGERS

I haven’t written anything on this blog for about a week and that is too long – I’ve missed it!

Think Lion, think Lion, think Lion!

The last seven days have distracted, I had to stand up in front of 250 people to present on brand and customer loyalty.  I managed to get the Managing Director of my client clapping and singing along to The Beatles “All you need is love”, so it wasn’t all bad. One very early morning late night later and it seems that my hour and fifteen minutes of rambling had gone down a treat – which is good as that is what pays the mortgage when I am not knee-deep in market research statistics and bar charts.

Pathologically hating presenting; I  feel the fear, do it anyway and risk to fate whether people are going to get “it” – I’m not a great verbal storyteller, I prefer the written word to get my ideas out. I often get stuck halfway through a story, or lose my place, unsure of how to go ahead. It’s easier when you put it on paper; there’s no one there to criticise or critique (before you get a chance to structure an re-do, if necessary) and I want to know my presentations off by heart, as reading from the slides, notes or screen in front, just seems such a cop-out.

I  can’t wing it; however there are those who can, they get a presentation (which they’ve never seen before) and turn into an engaging and amusing “mein host”, who can wax lyrical on the topic, seemingly now an expert, relaxed and confident in mere minutes. I don’t think the universe likes these people very much.

If you gave me the same presentation, rather than deftly learning the topic and getting ready to go out there, I’d be gone. Even if it meant climbing out the nearest window – The host calls “Insert Name here” to the stage… “Errrr – Does anyone know where she’s gone?”

They say (still not sure who” they “are) that audiences feel your nerves and if your nervous they get nervous too, so on slide 2 I surrendered and gave into talking about my subject with the passion I usually reserve for my writing. They joined in and laughed in all the right places and even sang at the end.

I guess to get people going all you need is a Beatles song, passion and blind faith and then (hopefully) they just go with it…

Have you ever had to speak publicly? How did you feel? Lets share night terrors!

What do you think?

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