Don’t picture your audience in their underwear.
You’ve probably heard this age-old piece of advice aimed at calming your nerves and lightening your demeanor for a presentation.
The problem is – other than the mental pictures you really don’t want to have – you don’t want to distance yourself from the audience. Picturing Joe from sales in his tighty-whiteys isn’t going to get you where you want to go.
You’re there for your audience, so respect them!
An effective presentation requires you to maintain a certain level of comfort and give-and-take with those to whom you’re speaking.
Here are some aspects of public speaking to consider. The bonus? They allow your audience to remain fully clothed.
Figuring out who your audience is and why they’re there are crucial elements for you to base your actions and purpose on.
This is what you should be focused on:
Understanding your audience members’ state of mind, expectations, and their physical state can help you rock your presentation.
Once you’ve got an understanding of the people you’re speaking to, you should be gauging their reactions to your speech.
It may seem silly, but here’s a quick snapshot of what an engaged audience member looks like:
What if the opposite is true and you notice a lot of glazed-over expressions, yawns, and fidgeting?
Do you say you need to use the restroom, hop in your car, and get the heck outta there?
You may feel like it!
But there’s a better way to handle an audience whose interest is flagging.
Remember: the ability to change midstream is invaluable. You’re there to serve the needs of your audience and not your own!
So, what can you do to shift your behavior and reconnect with your audience?
That quickly and easily, you’ve re-forged that connection.
Keep the focus on your purpose – why is your audience there? What do they need to get from you? Gauge reactions and adjust your methods as necessary to keep the audience engaged.
Remember, your job is to make connections with your audience. It’s all about them!
Make necessary adjustments in your presentation and in your environment to provide the best and most effective experience for those to whom you’re speaking.