Are you scheduled to speak to a group of professional peers?
Are you apprehensive about confronting someone in your family about a conflict?
Have you been asked to give a presentation?
Are you breathing and desire to communicate with confidence and power.
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you can be confident in your ability to speak with persuasive power by following these 7 steps of preparation.
Make sure you are familiar with all the facts. Make sure what you present IS fact. Take time to move beyond emotion to discover the truth. Your credibility rests on the your confidence in the information you will present. Know what you are talking about. This is true whether you are preaching a sermon or having a heart to heart conversation with your spouse.
List all of the elements you want to include in your presentation. Write down all of the supportive illustrations, evidence, scripture, questions, everything that you would possibly want to say about the topic you will address.
3. Focus Focus Focus
This is the most important step of all. Ask yourself WHY you want to say all those things you have listed. Isolate ONE, yes that is right ONE, outcome you want the listener to walk away with. Did you notice I said ONE outcome. Make that ONE outcome the singular focus of everything you say. This is where most communicators fail. They chase rabbit trails that lead nowhere or try to accomplish too much in a single talk. Your audience, whether 200 people or your husband, want to know what you are driving at.
“If you aim at nothing you will hit it every time. If you know where you are going you can take anyone with you.”
So, look over that LIST of things you want to say and write WHAT YOU WANT TO ACCOMPLISH into a single sentence. If you can’t identify the objective of your talk in a single sentence, you won’t be able to communicate it no matter how much time you have.
Now, eliminate everything in the list that does not lead the listener to the desired outcome. This can be hard when you have an emotional attachment to some story or point. It may be powerful, you may love it, but if it doesn’t lead toward your OBJECTIVE ditch it!
Organize what remains in a way that will most powerfully lead your listener/s to the SINGLE objective you want to accomplish.
Practice your presentation OUTLOUD, preferably with a friend who can give you some objective feedback. See if they get the objective of your talk.
Make your presentation with confidence.
SO….. If you are dreading your next communication challenge OR…. if you are looking for an opportunity to make your next presentation powerful and persuasive, prepare with these steps and let me know how it goes. I look forward to your comments.