When crafting a speech you really need an audience to test it on. And presentations guru, Rob Geraghty, is the ideal sounding board, encouraging me to experiment while keeping my wilder flights of fancy in check. Most important is Rob’s refrain, “this sounds great, Nisha, but what does it really mean for your audience? ” This month I’ve been working on a speech entitled ‘Getting Your Message Across’, aimed at a large audience of IT professionals. With a little help from Rob, it’s gelling nicely.
There’s a vast amount of content to draw on – from classic speeches and charismatic politicians, to rhetorical flourishes and decoding body language. But I’ve only got half an hour to get my own message across and as the last speaker of the day, I daren’t keep my audience from the evening’s entertainment up ahead. So what to include and what to jettison? Here’s where road-testing the speech with Rob comes in. It becomes obvious pretty quickly that Rob’s connecting with the video clips I’ve found of Steve Jobs, John Chambers, and Steve Ballmer. So I’m going to make these three icons of the IT industry the core of my speech and get the audience to figure out what we can all learn from them. The aim is to get everyone on their feet by the end! Presentation is in a week’s time – fingers crossed until then.
Rob Geraghty is at www.getwowfactor.co.uk.