On the Air

Link

Here’s something a little different: a radio interview with my good friend, L. Jaye Bell. I was delighted to be L. Jaye’s first guest in 2013 on her program Destination Maine. I hope you’ll enjoy listening. I see it’s not showing up as a link, so please copy and paste it!

http://destinationmaineradioshow.blogspot.com/2013/01/january-11-2013-beverly-scott.html

Best wishes for a productive and stretching year ahead,

Beverly

Stick the landing

What message from years of training do you suppose inspires an Olympic athlete about to complete a routine before the crowd goes wild with delight?

“Stick the landing!”

No matter how the performance has gone thus far, the final moment is vital. Stick the landing! Make it solid, strong, secure. Express the best stance. Look outward and upward. Give your audience that final impression of completeness. Hold that pose with focus and energy before you leave.

As in gymnastics, so in presenting. In addition to knowing what you should do when you complete a presentation, it’s good to know what not to do. Here are some things to avoid:

http://www.ragan.com/Main/Articles/45191.aspx

Enjoy the Olympics. Enjoy speaking. And always stick the landing.

What are some ways you have found helpful when you complete your presentations to hold your listeners’ attention?

Until next time,

Beverly

 

Umission: supporting you having a wonderful life


What an honor to have been selected as Umission’s Person of the Week.

http://umission.com/person-of-the-week/beverly-scott/

Here’s to freedom,

Beverly

Is this you?

I hope not. But if it is, take heart. There is a way to quiet your mind, calm your nerves, settle your body, control your message and (I’m not kidding) be yourself when you are in front of an audience. Did I mention that you can actually ENJOY the experience, too?

My 5-week Free Your Talents class, “Presentation Skills for Professionals” still has some spaces available. I hope you’ll enroll right now. Here are the details:

Thursday evenings, 5:30 to 8:30 pm, beginning May 10, 2012. Lord Camden Inn, Camden, Maine. Value: $650. Regular price: $350. Spring Special: $250. A $50 deposit holds your place in this fun, stretching, informative, practical, freeing class. Now’s the time, friends. Take this class. Write or call: beverly@freeyourtalents.com; 207-230-0272.

You can change the way you feel about being in front of a group. Save money, time and energy by practicing the principles I will teach you in class. 

Learn to be yourself while people are watching.

Yours in freedom and clarity,

Beverly

In case you haven’t heard . . .

My Free Your Talents Mini-Course is on its way:

You can feel comfortable, relaxed, natural and confident when you stand before an audience. On Sunday, April 29, 2012, from 4:00 to 6:00 pm., at the Lord Camden Inn in downtown Camden, Maine, I will teach a “Free Your Talents” mini-course. This two-hour session will explore the principles of confident communication and how to implement them naturally and effectively in your life.
If you seek freedom and ease in presenting ideas or abilities to others, come join us on April 29th. Admission is $10 for the public, $5 for Chamber of Commerce members, so bring your friends for a fun and informative session.
Please contact me at 230-0272 or beverly@freeyourtalents.com to reserve your place in this fun and informative mini-course.
Free your talents: be yourself while people are watching.
Hope to see you on April 29th.
Beverly

‎”Finally, in conclusion, let me say just this.”

This quotation from Peter Sellers makes me laugh.

This type of ending to a presentation does not.

When you are ready to wrap up your talk, do it. Avoid prolonging it with statements like, “Without further ado,” “To make a long story short,” or even “In conclusion.” Why not? They have become trite fillers, fall-back remarks that can take away from the naturalness and sincerity of your message. They seem to indicate, “I don’t know what else to say now, so I’ll just say this.” Find a fresh way to let your listeners know that you are nearing the end, and then go there.

Restating your main points is helpful to your audience, a brief recap of what you’ve given them. You can say something like, “Let’s go over those points one more time,” or something else that indicates the conclusion is imminent. Giving them something to do (sometimes referred to as the “call to action”) will help you leave on a strong note.

Then, when you’ve stopped talking, stand still and be quiet for a thoughtful moment. Just as an Olympic gymnast sticks the landing upon completing a routine, you, too, can take a few seconds to stay connected with what you’ve offered. This allows your listeners to ponder what you’ve just said. It keeps them focussed not on YOU, but on your message to THEM. This is the best way to end your presentation.

Here’s to poised completion,

Beverly

Um

[For reasons unknown to me, I cannot get the usual spacing between paragraphs in this post. I don't like the way this looks, but here's today's offering, anyhow.]

Is it a word: um? I’ve just visited Webster’s online dictionary and see this:

Definition of UM

—used to indicate hesitation <well, um, I don’t know>
“Um” is an interjection. It doesn’t tell us what, where or how something is, give a sense of action or purpose, nor does it offer clarity. It’s a filler, a place taker, and indicates that we’re lost, confused, puzzled and most likely uncomfortable. When you use “um” a lot, people lose interest. It’s a habit well dismissed.
A pause is more effective than mindlessly “um”-ing and will help you get back on track. Rather than fill the air with “um” (or “uh,” “welllllll,” “aaaaand,” “hmm,” or “y’know”), just be still. Be quiet a second. Breathe in. Pay attention to what you want to say. Then say it. Let the “um” go away. It’s not a helpful utterance.
Start to notice “um” in your conversations and presentations. Then, pause instead before you continue speaking. You’ll feel clearer, and your listeners will follow you much more easily. I think you’ll find that you communicate much better without “um.”
Isn’t that a happy thought?
Beverly

Who determines how well you perform in front of a group?

“I’m fine talking to people I work with; they already know my flaws so it’s no big deal if they see me goof up. It’s when I’m in front of strangers that I freak out.”

“Give me a group of people I don’t know; they’ll never see me again so I don’t really care. Make me speak to coworkers and I fall apart; they’ll hammer me!”

“I don’t mind talking to an audience of under a hundred people; once it gets over 100, I’m a nervous wreck.”

“Big crowds don’t bother me; hey, I can’t even see who’s out there. But if there are only 10 or 20 listeners, I get all fidgety, sweat like crazy and can’t remember what I want to say.”

On it goes. People can be amazed that other folks don’t share their specific worries regarding audiences. It all boils down to this question: “Do your listeners actually determine whether or not you can feel at ease, clear-minded and capable?”

(Answer: They don’t.)

Beverly

 

F E A R

The muscular man strode to the front of the room. His buzz cut hair, piercing blue eyes and no-nonsense manner reminded us with each presentation that he meant business. A Viet Nam veteran a generation older than most of my other university public speaking students, he always seemed a bit distant and harsh. I was a little scared of him; the other students generally avoided him.

On the flip chart he wrote four bold letters in a vertical column:

F

E

A

R

Looking at each of us before he spoke, he breathed deeply. Then, in military manner, he told us that he was sure we had experienced fear. He affirmed that he, too, had known fear, giving several vivid examples from his time in service. Not clear where his speech was leading, I glanced around at his fellow students and saw unsure, sober faces.

“Now, I’m gonna tell you what fear really is,” he barked:

False

Evidence

Appearing

Real

His tone softened. His voice quieted. He explained that fear cannot govern us if we don’t let it because it isn’t true; we need to look beyond fear to find strength; we can feel loved rather than be afraid.

When he returned to his seat, the silence that had minutes before been one of trepidation had become one of trust and assurance, comfort and amazement.

False evidence no longer appeared real.