Jólaræðan

23. desember 2009

lectureÁ að halda smá tölu í jólaboðinu í ár? Hérna eru nokkrar ábendingar sem hjálpa þér að halda minnistæðustu ræðuna jólin 2009

1. Vertu fyndin(n)

Þú þarft ekki að vera Jón Gnarr endilega, en öllum finnst gaman að hlæja pínulítið. Nokkur skemmtileg augnablik, lítill brandari hjálpar þér að tengjast áheyrendum þínum. En passaðu að þetta verði ekki að uppistandi, nema það sé tilgangurinn, þú vilt væntanlega skilja fólkið þitt eftir með það sem þér lá á hjarta!

2. Það er í lagi að gera mistök

Meira að segja forsetar Bandaríkjanna hefur klúðrað ræðum og þeir hafa lifað það af. Þó að þú misstígir þig á leiðinni upp eða sagðir upp í staðinn fyrir niður, þó þú segir óvart nafn systur þinnar í staðinn fyrir nafn mömmu þinnar. Veistu það skiptir ekki máli, viðurkenndu mistökin og haltu áfram.

3. Vertu stuttorð(ur)

Öllum leiðist langar ræður. Þannig að vertu stuttorður og fáðu frekar áheyrendurna til að langa í meir eftir að þú ferð, frekar en hitt!

4. Vertu þú sjálfur

Á jólunum viljum við hafa þá sem við þekkjum næst okkur, og ekki vera feimin við að vera þú sjálf(ur). Okkur þykir vænt um það þegar persónuleikinn skín fram og notaðu tækifærið núna um hátíðarnar og hættu að fela sjálfan þig!


How to Stay Cool in Public Speaking

18. desember 2009

Við birtum einstaka sinnum greinar á ensku, þessi er héðan – eftir Joan Curtis

Does the thought of speaking in public make you tremble inside? Are you one of those people who would rather die than speak before a group?

If the answer to either of these questions is yes, then fear not, you are not alone. The majority of people would prefer to turn tail and run than to rise up and speak before others. Most of these people will tell you they have no trouble speaking one-on-one, but when asked to stand and speak before groups, they cringe with fear.

This article will put that universal fear of public speaking in the proper perspective and give you some tips for turning the fear into positive energy.

The Paradox of Fear

Most people do not realize that fear is a good thing. In fact, if you are too relaxed you will not perform as well on the podium. Seasoned speakers know this. It’s a big secret we like to keep to ourselves. If everyone knew that fear was a good thing, everyone would confidently walk up to the podium, knowing that the fear would soon disappear. Others would not be so impressed with our prowess on stage.

Let’s look at what happens to effectiveness in relation to fear.

When you first walk on the stage, your fear factor is very high. This is called the red zone, when all of us, even the very best speakers experience the greatest fear. In the red zone when our fear is highest, we are most alert. Blood is really pumping through our veins. Our effectiveness as a speaker rises. As the speech progresses, our effectiveness continues to go up, side-by-side with our nervousness. After about 2-4 minutes into the presentation, we all hit what is called the comfort zone. This is where you begin to sense some relaxation. What you hope as a speaker is that you remain in your comfort zone through the remainder of your talk.

Very nervous speakers do not allow themselves to hit the comfort zone. They stay in the red zone throughout the talk, causing their fear to take over. This phenomenon causes fear not to propel but to paralyze.

If, on the other hand, you become even more relaxed past your comfort zone, guess what happens to your effectiveness as a speaker? It goes down! In fact, the more relaxed you get after your comfort zone the less effective you are on the stage. That little edge that brought you to the podium is now gone. Have you ever seen a speaker whom you thought was so good in first few minutes and then he/she began telling off-color stories or rambled on about something irrelevant to the topic? These are people who surpassed their comfort levels.

Knowing this paradox about fear and effectiveness, we as speakers embrace our fear and use it to propel us, rather than paralyze us. Fear then becomes the energy, the enthusiasm, the spark, our friend.

Tips to Manage Your Fear:

Identify the fear. What are you afraid of? What specifically do you fear? Are you afraid of what the other people will think of you? Are you afraid of losing your train of thought? Are you afraid you’ll fall off the stage? Write down everything you fear. Make the list as long as you need to.

Isolate Each Fear. Once you’ve identified your fears, list the things you can do to prevent that dreaded event from happening. For example, if you are afraid you will lose your train of thought, prepare clear, precise notes. If you fear what others will think of you, imagine what they are thinking. How can you turn their thoughts from negative energy to positive energy?

Take Baby Steps. Instead of making your first speech to the local Rotary Club, ask a question in a Sunday School class. When you feel comfortable asking questions in public, then teach a Sunday School class or volunteer to give a little talk in your public schools. You might consider joining Toastmasters International. This organization offers many opportunities for practice and feedback.

Practice, practice, practice. I wrote another paper on How to Write a Speech without Notes. In that paper I outlined a practice model. Take a look at that model. If you practice your speech to the point that you are absolutely sick of hearing it, you will be prepared for your speech.

Make the Unknown Known. One of our biggest fears of speaking is the unknown. We do not know the audience. We do not know the location. We do not know what will happen when we open our mouths. This list is endless. Of course you cannot make all the unknowns known, but the more you make known the more control you will get on this fear. For example, how can you make the audience known? Here are some tips:

  • Research your audience. Find out the kinds of people who usually attend this session. What are their ages, sex, socio-economic background and likely interests?
  • Greet people as they walk in. Shake hands and make eye contact. If possible, ask people their names. With a large audience you cannot meet everyone, but each person you greet becomes your new friend.

Engage Your Audience. Look out into the audience no matter how large and get them involved in your talk. Bring them along with you. Don’t just talk to them and please, do not read your notes or your PowerPoint presentation. When your eyes point down to read, you do not engage! Ask open questions that make the audience think. Challenge them to become part of your presentation. In another article, How to Engage Your Audience I shared some tips. Take a look at those tips and apply what you can.

Remember, fear is not something to fear. It is something to embrace. No matter how cool a speaker appears, he/she is shaking in his/her boots. We all have that little edge of nervousness when we walk onto the stage. We’re all in this together. You are not alone in your fear. What seasoned speakers have done is to learn how to make fear their friend. You can, too!


Ræðumennska!

26. nóvember 2009

public%20speaking1Slakaðu á!

Við erum venjulega okkar eigin verstu gagnrýnendur. Ef þú gleymdir einni setningu úr glósunum þínum, hafðu ekki áhyggjur, það tók enginn eftir því. Ef þú gleymdir að fjalla um eina glæruna, ekki hafa áhyggjur, það er enginn að fara að bannfæra þig úr vinnunni. Aðal atriðið! ENGAR ÁHYGGJUR, slökum á. Þetta er ekki upp á líf og dauða. Þetta er nú bara lítil ræða 😉

Ekki viðurkenna stressið!

Ef þér mun virkilega líða mun betur, skaltu segja við allan salinn að þú sért stressuð/aður áður en þú byrjar. EN ræðan þín mun hafa mun meira vægi og verður sterkari ef þú sleppir því. Það eru miklar líkur á að þú sért eina manneskjan sem veist að þú sért stressuð, þannig að hversvegna ættirðu að sína veikleikana þína sem annars sjást ekki? Láttu þau halda að þú sért með fullkomna stjórn, jafnvel þó þér finnist þú ekki hafa það.

Hægðu á þér

Eitt af því sem er hvað mest áberandi hjá stressuðum ræðumönnum er hvað þeir tala hratt. Þú kannt að vera með flottustu ræðu í heimi, en ef enginn skilur hvað þú ert að segja, skiptir það engu. Hægðu á þér og mundu að tala í eðlilegum hraða, jafnvel hægar þegar þú talar opinberlega!

Augun

Fólk treystir þeim sem horfa í augun á sér, þannig að horfðu á áhorfendurnar og náðu augnsambandi þegar þú talar við þá. Ekki líta niður á gólfið – það er enginn þar. Og ekki horfa eingöngu á blöðin þín, því þá munu áheyrendurnir halda að þú sért illa undirbúin. Þú lítur út fyrir að vera mun sjálfsöruggari þegar höfuðið er reist upp sem líka gefur áhorfendunum tækifæri til að slaka eilítið meira á.


Appearance Is Important

20. nóvember 2009

Við birtum einstaka sinnum greinar á ensku, þessi er héðan – eftir Stephen Boyd

Certainly what you say is more important than what people see. Your appearance, however, is an important aspect of your presentation skills; you want to encourage the audience to listen to what you have to say.

Remember that your presentation begins the moment someone recognizes you as the speaker. This might be in the elevator, the restroom, or even in the parking garage. As soon as you are in close proximity to your speaking location, act as though you are on stage—because you may be. Finish your preparation before you leave your car. Avoid writing down notes at the table before you speak. People might get the impression that you did not carefully prepare.

Be sociable in the activities that precede your speech. Look pleasant. Meet and greet people and show a genuine interest in the other person. This is not the time to be sitting by yourself pondering your presentation. Show by your expression and actions that you are engaged in the activities which precede your presentation.

Wear clothing suitable for the audience you are speaking to. If you are not sure, ask the program planner when you are learning about your audience. When possible, dress one notch up from the audience. For men that might mean wearing a sport coat with an open collar if you know your audience will be in knit shirts and slacks. For women this might mean wearing nice slacks and sweater when speaking to a casual retreat where women will be in jeans. For most occasions in a hotel or event center, a suit and tie or silk blouse is always appropriate. Do not wear clothing that can be distracting, which might mean avoiding flashy jewelry or flamboyant shirts and scarves. For some people, of course, the flamboyant look is their trademark. Your appearance should blend in well with your content and the audience to which you are speaking.

I was once in a setting where the young man who was teaching was frustrated at what he perceived to be a negative attitude from the participants. Over half the audience was in suits and ties, dresses and high heels, with a few people in jeans, sweatshirts, and sneakers. The speaker was in jeans with his shirttail out and wearing sandals. There was nothing wrong with his dress if he’d been in the audience, but it adversely affected his rapport with some of the people there. Someone privately suggested he tuck in his shirt and wear a sport coat to the next session, and he wisely took the advice. He was amazed at the difference his effort on his appearance made on the attitude of his audience. His content was excellent but was overshadowed by how he presented himself.

Check yourself in the mirror of the restroom before you enter the meeting room to make sure that everything about your appearance is in place. About a year ago I was in a hurry to make a noon banquet speech and I skipped the restroom look. When I got back to the car after the speech, I realized I had unbuttoned the top button of my shirt and pulled my tie loose earlier in the day, and I had looked that way throughout the speech. I’m sure I appeared as though I’d had more than food at lunch that day!

Look confident even though you may feel nervous about your presentation. Avoid the worried, furrowed-brow look. Smile a lot. Walk with a bounce in your step. Emanate that “I am in charge” aura. You will certainly have that confident look when you are speaking and you will want to show it in the minutes before you speak as well. The incongruity of looking too serious and worried and then smiling and acting enthusiastic as you speak may negatively affect your credibility.

Finally, when you are introduced, walk to the lectern with erect posture, quick steps, and a smile on your face. Before you actually speak, look at the audience to make eye contact with several people, and then begin.

Of course you rely first on great content, but these tips can help you to reinforce your expertise with a professional manner and look.


Að halda ræðu 2

29. október 2009

PublicSpeakingAð halda ræðu getur verið taugastrekkjandi, en hér eru nokkur ráð sem hjálpa þér að verða ræðusnillingur!

1. Þekktu umfjöllunarefnið!

Kynntu þér það sem þú ert að fjalla um og vertu viss um þær staðreyndir sem þú teflir fram. ef þú veist hvað þú ætlar að segja og veist að staðreyndirnar eru réttar, verðurðu mun öruggari og getur svarað spurningum ef að þær koma!

2. Æfðu þig, æfðu þig meira og æfðu þig síðan örlítið meira.

Þegar þú ert búinn að undirbúa þig, haltu þá einskonar æfingaræðu, og síðan aftur og síðan einu sinni í viðbót. Talaðu við hundinn þinn, fyrirframan spegilinn eða fjölskyldumeðlimina. Í hvert skipti sem þú heldur æfingaræðuna, þá muntu læra efni hennar betur, eykur sjálfsöryggið þitt og verður flottari ræðumaður!

3. Ímyndaðu þér að þú sér frábær!

Neikvæð hugsun kemur þér hvergi. Ef þú hefur trú á því að þú munir standa þig vel, þá muntu gera það. Ef þú heldur að þú munir klikka, veistu…þá muntu líklega klikka! Eins einfalt og það nú er!

4. Þekktu áheyrendur þína

Eins einfalt og þetta hljómar kannski, er þetta ofsalega mikilvægt. Við hvern ertu að tala? Fjölskylduna, vinnufélagana, vinina? Ef þú ert að tala við vini þína, þá vilja þeir kannski fá smá skemmtun í leiðinni, en ef þú t.a.m. ert lögmaður að tala við dómara, þá er betra að skilja húmorinn eftir úti. Hugsaðu líka um hvort að aldurshópurinn sé breiður eða á hvaða bili hann er. Sumir brandarar og sum dæmi eiga kannski betur við Iphone kynslóðina heldur en aðra hópa.


Adapting on the spot

16. október 2009

Við birtum einstaka sinnum greinar á ensku, þessi er héðan – eftir Stephen Boyd

Once I was listening to an outstanding speaker when an audience member, succumbing to a long day of meetings, went to sleep so soundly that his head suddenly fell forward. He awoke with such a jerk that he pulled a muscle in his neck and had to be taken out of the room on a stretcher.

During that time, the speaker calmly said to the audience, “We have a medical emergency. Let’s just wait until this is taken care of.” She waited at the lectern until it was clear that the person was receiving help, then continued her speech. She became even more effective after this unexpected happening during her presentation because she knew how to adapt on the spot.

One of the concerns of the effective speaker during preparation is to adapt to the audience he or she is addressing. But to really make a connection with a specific audience, the quality speaker must also adapt during the presentation. This requires quick thinking and the willingness to go with your intuitive impulse. Here are some tips on how to make those kinds of on-the-spot decisions.

You are told ten minutes before your presentation that you will have to shorten your speech from 30 minutes to 20 minutes. The way to handle this emergency is not to rush through material hoping to get it all in. Instead, simply eliminate one of your points and support for you point. No one knows what you intended to include except you and thus they will just assume that that is all you planned to say.

Sometimes an audience may be much smaller than the planner anticipated. You have many empty seats throughout the room, and empty seats make relating to an audience difficult. When you start your presentation, have everyone stand for a specific reason, such as a stretch break or to meet someone they don’t know. Then while everyone is still standing, suggest moving forward to fill an empty seat. This provides a full audience up front. Since the back rows are empty, how few people there are is less noticeable.

You have an audience that seems lethargic or indifferent because of the length of the meeting or the time of day. What do you do to wake them up? You see people nodding off or slouching in their seats. Make an abrupt change. Move to the back of the room as you speak, or include a piece of information that allows you to punch out words loudly. Speed up your rate of speech or make quicker gestures. If you are providing lots of data, break that up with a story related to the information you are providing.

Finally, as you get into your speech, you realize that you have misjudged the knowledge level of your audience and that they don’t understand your material. Simply start providing more definitions and explanations. When possible, give a concrete example of the principle presented when you can tell by facial expressions that you are taking them into new territory. You might even stop and ask, “What questions do you have about what we’ve covered so far?” This gives the audience a chance to facilitate understanding by asking a pertinent question as well as giving you valuable feedback on what they do understand.

A key part of adapting on the spot is to avoid showing that things are not going as you anticipated. Make it seem as though everything you do is carefully planned and that you are in charge. For example, don’t say, “I did not expect to have so many empty seats. Let’s all move to the front of the room.” And refrain from saying, “I can tell this material is a little hard for you to follow, so I’ll back up and give you more definitions.”

When you adeptly adapt, your listeners are aware that you are audience-centered at all times and that you prepared specifically for them.


Að halda ræðu!

1. október 2009

Public%20SpeakingAð halda ræðu eða tala fyrir framan fólki er ábyggilega eitt af því sem við mannfólkið eigum hvað erfiðast með, en á sama tíma erum við oft afar gagnrýnin á þá sem við hlustum á, kannski er það nú þessvegna sem við verðum svo stressuð þegar við eigum sjálf að standa fyrir framan hóp af fólki og segja nokkur orð! En hafðu ekki áhyggjur, hérna eru nokkur ráð sem hjálpa þér að undirbúa næstu tölu.

1. Lærðu af meisturunum.

Ef þú veist að þú átt að halda ræðu t.a.m. í brúðkaupi innan fjölskyldunnar eða átt bara að halda fyrirlestur í skólanum eða vinnunni, fylgstu þá sérstaklega vel með þeim sem eru að halda svipaða fyrirlestra eða ræður í kringum þig. Og kíktu jafnvel á youtube og skoðaðu myndbönd af fólki sem má kalla „meistara“ í ræðumennsku s.s. Winston Churchill nú eða líttu nær okkar tíma og skoðaðu framá menn í samfélaginu okkar, og jafnvel framámenn annarsstaðar s.s. forseta Bandaríkjanna eða fyrrum forseta þar á bæ. Þú getur jafnvel kíkt á framámenn úr löndum sem þú kannt ekki tungumálið í, því að þú ert ekki bara að hlusta á efnið, heldur líka almennt yfirbragðið. Prufaðu síðan að „herma“ eftir stílbrögðum meistaranna!

2. Veldu rétt föt!

Hvað eru rétt föt? Það er góð spurning, það fer allt eftir því við hvaða aðstæður þú ert að stíga fram og opna munninn. En aðalatriðið er að þú sért sátt(ur) við þann fatnað og almennt um útlit þitt þegar þú stendur upp. Öll höfum við áhyggjur af því að fólkið í kring sé að dæma okkur og ef þú getur valið fatnað og hárgreiðslu sem þú ert sátt(ur) við, þá þarftu ekki að hafa áhyggjur af þessum hlutum þegar þú hefur mál þitt!

3. Kynntu þér herbergið eða salinn.

Ef að það er möguleiki fyrir þig, reyndu þá að kíkja á staðinn þar sem að þú ert að fara að halda fyrirlesturinn eða ræðuna. Kíktu í fundarherbergið, kennslustofuna eða veislusalinn og skoðaðu aðstæður. Okkur líður nefnilega mun betur í aðstæðum sem við þekkjum, heldur en aðstæðum sem við vitum ekkert um. Þannig að því betur sem þú þekkir staðinn, því auðveldara verður að flytja mál þitt! Þetta á líka við um hlutina sem þú ert að fara að nota, t.d. ef þú ert með PowerPoint skjöl eða munt nota hljóðnema, prufaðu þessi tæki áður en ræðan byrjar og hlutirnir munu án efa ganga örlítið betur.

4. Vertu edrú þegar þú talar!

Þetta á kannski helst við um ræður sem haldnar eru við hátíðleg tilefni. Margir eiga það til að skvetta smá áfengi upp í sig, kjarksins vegna, en staðreyndin er sú að okkur finnst við mikilvæg tilefni mun skemmtilegra og innilegra að heyra pínulítið stressaða manneskju flytja falleg orð um vin eða vinkonu heldur en „léttfullan“ vin segja óskiljanlegar setningar og reyna að vera hallærislega fyndinn. Stundum er bara betra að sleppa víninu.