Friday, October 18, 2013

Why Do Many Presentations Bore me?

Speaking to a group of people presents many complex communication challenges.  The following are a few:

  • Extraverts overestimate their abilities and tend to “wing it.”  They tend to equate a lack of nervousness with a superior ability to effectively communicate.  There is no correlation to such a notion.
  • Introverts are not given enough time to think things through and come up with an organized talk that—in their eyes—is good for them and the audience; therefore, they operate from their least preferred personality style in a timid fashion.
  • Shy people are too nervous and often focus only on themselves mostly concerned with how bad they might be doing or that people won’t approve them.
  • Many other speakers bury their heads in the sand and forgo planning and hope for the best by talking on and on hoping they accidentally stumble across what the audience might want to hear.

How do you overcome being that guy/girl? 
Know your personality style and your audience, then prepare accordingly.  For example, if you are an extravert, be humble (understand that confidence doesn’t mean competence) and ask who will be in the meeting, how long will I talk, and what is your desired outcome of my talk? Then prepare with the audience in mind.  

 For Introverts, it is best to let your boss know ahead of time you are more comfortable and can do a better job if you have at least a day to prepare.  Ask the same questions an extravert would ask, then prepare accordingly.

Have a realistic evaluation of your personality style, skills, and abilities and prepare accordingly with the audience in mind.  If you do, you will never give a boring presentation.

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