Photo by JD Hancock
If you’re giving an instructional talk, you need to position yourself as an guru, someone who knows all and sees all to make your audience trust in you. But positioning yourself in this way will limit your ability to give a speech with passion, something that is remarked upon, remembered, and shared.
When you first start speaking in public, you’ll likely to feel comfortable talking more about what you know (your self) and less about what your audience is interested in (your content). You’ll soon realize that people invested their time and money to listen to your wisdom, and you’ll quickly remove your personal stories from your presentation to get to the “next level” of speaking.
The next level of speaking is all about your information. It’s packed with great tips and techniques that you’ve learned by doing and researching. You’ve got a lot of great set of slides that highlight your points. Perhaps you’ve even taken an extra step of finding stories about people who followed your advice and seen the results of your wisdom for them selves. This type of speech is likely to be fundamentally useful, but not memorable (except for those that came to learn specific academic techniques).
The highest level of speaking is about sharing your information, but in a way that’s memorable. And to do this, you need to go back to your roots. Why is what you’re sharing personally interesting to you? What excites you day-to-day in doing this work? What personal challenges have you faced trying to implement these ideas (both failure and success)?
Ultimately, people aren’t really interested in learning something new. People crave vicarious experiences. They want to see the world through others’ eyes and be excited to feel what they feel. To speak with passion, you need to be vulnerable. Don’t try to be a superhuman speaker (with no flaws). Be a super human speaker (who is believable). Share your passion, and let feeling imbue your presentation.