5 Things Your Audience Won’t Tell You

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On the whole, the professionals who attend your speeches will be nice, polite people.

Nice and polite is all well and good, but it won’t help you improve or grow as a speaker. People telling you how well you did will only go so far, and we want to be honest with you.

We’ve listed five massive problems that happen again and again during speeches, that attendees are too polite to confess.

1. Your Speech Is Too Long

Less is more. Listening to a speaker talk for 45 minutes straight leaves most audience members cold. Finishing your speech (slightly!) early reduces the chances of it dragging on too long, and will leave your audience wanting more.

2. Your Slides Are Pointless

Badly thought out slides are a waste of your time, and will distract the audience from the power of your presentation. We’ve written about how to make great presentations here, but remember; keep it simple, understandable, and short.

3. Your Jokes Aren’t Funny

So often, speeches are peppered with low-quality jokes, and it can really drag down the mood. Even if you’re the next big thing on the Cheshire open mic night circuit, don’t weigh your speech down with pregnant pauses for laughs that never come.

4. You Just Talk At Me

We’ve spoken about how Q&A sessions don’t always work, but speaking at an audience is also not ideal. You need to work out a way to communicate with your audience that doesn’t seem contrived or uncomfortable. Some people ask questions for the audience to answer, some reserve time in their speech for the audience to discuss questions amongst themselves, and for some, asking rhetorical, thought provoking questions is enough to keep the audience engaged with the topic.

5. You Are Unapproachable

Networking is unbelievably important to attendees. There is a power imbalance associated with speaking; you are effectively the only person in that room who has had the chance to voice your ideas, elevating you and marking you out as special. This can be intimidating, especially if your speech is styled like a lecture. Make sure that you attend the networking sessions of the event, and try to be relaxed and speak to several of your attendees, listening to their insights on your topic.

“Events Expire, Audience Lasts”

Grow and maintain your audience at Pickevent.com 

 

Photo Credit: Bill Selak via Compfight cc