Help! I`m Long-winded!
When you're delivering a presentation and the thought crosses your mind that you may have said enough, you probably have. Move on to your next agenda item. Your listeners will appreciate it.
But what if the thought never occurs to you that you might have said enough? Well, for one thing, your listeners will tune you out as you drone on and on. When that happens, you'll have a tough time getting them back. That is, if you even notice that they've tuned out. (If you're rambling on, there's a fair chance that you're too much in your head and not paying enough attention to your listeners.)
So, the issue here is not that you've said too much - it's easy to talk a lot about your topic when you know a lot about it. The key is to recognize that you've said too much and make the conscious decision to move on.
If you know us, you know that we're always talking about the benefits of pausing. This time is no exception. Pausing is critical for many reasons.
- It helps you gather your thoughts.
- It helps you regain control of your nerves.
- It helps you engage your listeners.
- It gives your listeners time to digest what you've just said.
And it even helps you recognize that you've said enough, and that it's time to move on.
As I often say in class, pausing is your friend.
Written by Greg Owen-Boger
Greg Owen-Boger has been with Turpin Communication since 1995, first as a cameraman, then instructor, account manager, and now vice president. Schooled in management and the performing arts, Greg brings a diverse set of skills and experiences to the organization. Greg is one of Turpin’s facilitators and coaches. When he’s not with clients, he manages the day-to-day operations of the company. Greg is an active member of the Association for Talent Development (ATD) and was the 2015 President of ATD, Chicagoland Chapter. He is a popular speaker, frequent blogger, and the co-author of the book The Orderly Conversation: Business Presentations Redefined. His latest book, also co-authored by Dale Ludwig, launched in 2017 and is entitled Effective SMEs: A Trainer’s Guide for Helping Subject Matter Experts Facilitate Learning.