speaking mistakes

911 for Speaking Bloopers

If you've ever seen the outtakes of a movie or TV show, it can be quite funny. The actors make mistakes and then they laugh about it. But what about public speaking bloopers? Suddenly it doesn't seem so funny. I watched a man give a presentation with his fly open. Another presenter had the slides in the wrong order. President Bush frequently mispronounced words. And I once knocked over a cup of coffee while giving a seminar!

We're going to make mistakes. That's a given. But how you handle the mistake is what counts. What's your recovery strategy? I ask my audiences to think of their worst fear. One person was afraid she'd trip over a wire on the stage. So, imagine it actually happening. What could you do to recover?

How about saying... "I want you to know I've been practicing that entrance for weeks."

Or you could say... "Never let it be said that I don't know how to make an entrance."

Or... "Now that I have your attention..."

One motivational speaker had to contend with a fire in the middle of his speech. He led his audience to the parking lot, stood on a car, and continued his speech. If companies and cities can have disaster recovery strategies, so can you. Develop a list of one-liners that you can put in your toolbox and you'll be prepared for any situation.

Presentations That Lose Business. What Was Google Thinking?

Good presenters get better jobs, receive promotions, make more sales and get more business. They also build a strong brand reputation. Consider Steve Jobs of Apple.He uses the platform to launch his new products to an audience that's engaged, excited, and eager to hear his message.

Now consider the launch of Google's new Nexus 1 phone. Here was an opportunity to create buzz for the new technology with their presentation. Instead of opportunity, the company became the target of much ridicule. Why? Because of their presentation. It takes seven seconds or less to make a first impression and the visual impact was immediately negative. The presenter used an overhead projector. Why would anyone use an outdated way of presenting when they are touting the newest technology? This was a disconnect for the audience. In addition, the presenter appeared nervous and dispassionate.

When launching a new product, companies must choose the best presenters. Speakers who are confident, dynamic, and passionate sell products. The impact of the presentation was negative. News shows mocked the presentation and this affected the brand reputation.

Whether you're launching a product, seeking funding, or pitching business your communication must be congruent. And be sure to put your very best presenter forward!