I am in the midst of massive renovations on my house and am currently sitting here watching walls being torn down, tiles being laid, timber being cut and hoping that it is all going to be put back together. Listening to the discussions going on between the builder and the carpenters reminded me of a line I heard in a speech a few years ago. … Measure Twice Cut Once…
Watching the meticulous measurements being done on the timber before the saw is engaged, I can now relate the words to the actual practice. Measure Twice Cut Once are words that also bring to mind what we say over and over again in Trischel Workshops,,, Practise, Practise, Practise, Preparation, Preparation, Preparation. These two words are key factors in ensuring that your presentations will be well done, that you have familiarised yourself with your audience and with your venue. All factors that mitigate the fear of the unknown, that mitigate the nerves – that allow you to concentrate on wowing your audience.
Practising your speech everywhere you can allows you to become familiar with your presentation. Once you are familiar and comfortable with what you are going to say you can then reduce your presentation to dot points, concepts, sign posts (whichever you feel most comfortable). This means that if you forget what you want to say next you won’t freeze, you will be able to pause, think to yourself – yes that is the concept I am talking about and smoothly go on with your presentation. Memorising your speech word for word leaves you open to the blank mind syndrome.. as soon as you forget the next word everything else after that word disappears as well! Not a happy situation to be in when in front of an audience.
Just think if the carpenters did not do their preparation with their careful measurements… just how stable would their work be, how much lost time would be involved by having to go back and remeasure and recut. In the same way failing to prepare and practise your presentations will leave you open to loss of credibility, lack of confidence and increased nerves.
So next time you are asked to do a presentation or speech, whether it be at work or at a social function … Measure Twice Cut Once …Prepare, Prepare, Practise, Practise… then step back and admire your performance, see your confidence increase and watch your credibility grow.
I am thankful that my builder and carpenters are doing their preparation and am optimistic that I will get my house back with walls and floors intact!
Trish @ Trischel