Before you speak, check out the venue – even on cruise ships

ByRick Deutsch

Before you speak, check out the venue – even on cruise ships

All seasoned professional speakers don’t trust anything to chance. Always look over the presentation room a few days before – but absolutely a few hours before you go on. If you are on a ship, get there early in the voyage. Meet the technicians who drive the audio/video. Get familiar with the layout. How are chairs arranged? Is there a door up front that lookie loo’s will interrupt through? Bolt it.

Check out the room to avoid a speaking flub.

Check out the room to avoid a speaking flub.

Is there a 110v outlet for your laptop close enough? Bring an extension cord. Usually a 6-footer will suffice, but I keep a 25 ft one in my trunk. If you are on a ship and need one – ask well in advance.

Check the microphone, lighting, audio/visual equipment, and any other factors. Is it light enough for you to have it recorded? Most of my talks are in a darkened room, so the video is a real challenge. Get a pro to recorded it or a trusted friend. Use a tripod, even if it’s a small six inch one. If you have a marginal environment, film it anyway. You can always learn from your performance. At least audio record it with a digital recorder. You can listen to it later to correct flaws.

Will you be able to roam around? Don’t stay anchored to the podium. A wireless head mic is good for this. A corded one will lock you to the stage. Often it adds a personal touch to get out into the audience, especially when there are questions at the end.

Check all systems before launching to the moon!

 

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