Cruise ship lecturers need skills when it comes to working an audience.
I am not a natural networker, schmoozer. It doesn’t come easy to me to interact with people, smile, show inquisitiveness, feign interest. I have to work at it.
It occurred to me that others might be uncomfortable once they step out from ‘behind the podium’ literally and figuratively.
In the coming days/weeks I will share some of the skills that are needed and how to develop them.
The first skill is to know when to accept a speaking gig.
If all speakers were as busy as they say they are, chances are nobody would have time to do anything new.
My son was a swimmer in high-school and college. Every now and then he was asked to do a time-trial, or a swim-off. Early on I saw him wonder, “Should I swim in this or that event?”
I told him, “Dude, you are a swimmer. If you are asked to swim, the answer is ‘yes.'”
He never agonized again.
Indeed he could not swim in every event on the schedule. But as long as he was honest with himself he could grab every opportunity that came his way.
The same for speakers, if you are asked to speak, the answer is ‘yes.’ Don’t pretend to be too busy or too good or too above or below a gig.
Knowing when to say ‘yes’ is important. If you don’t speak you are not a speaker. You’re a sitter or a listener.
I went to Phoenix not long ago as a service = I footed the bill for myself. Before I left I got invited to speak in North Carolina, San Francisco and Cape Town.
Doors open when you get on stage.
Say, ‘Yes’ more often than not and watch opportunities come your way.
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