Archive for August 21, 2007

An Important Focus On Self-focused Speeches and Audience-focused Speeches

August 21, 2007

As I work on the notes for the upcoming training courses and my coaching for presentations, certain thoughts are brought to mind… again.

Very often, the professionals and individuals I coach ask me a common question, “Where do I focus my attention on when speaking?”

In fact, there are a number of different types of focuses in speeches. (You will be surprised to learn what they are.) But at this moment I’d like to focus (ahem, pun intended) on two of the key types: The Self-focused Speeches and Audience-focused Speeches.

Here’s a quick list of the attributes and effects of self-focused speeches versus audience-focused speeches.

Self-focused Speeches:

**  The nervousness could amplify if not expertly controlled.

**  More concerned with getting the information out than audience reaction.

**  Usually deals with full accuracy and details of topic, especially technical ones.

**  Draws character from within self.

**  Tends to tax on memorizing ability and rehearsed  competency.

**  Own self’s ideology is reinforced.

Audience-focused Speeches:

**  Can sense the audience mood and energy.

**  Able to be cater speech to the audience.

**  Tend to forget about nervousness as audience becomes the main draw of the attention.

**  Gels and interacts better with audience.

**  Tends to be more flexible in contents of speeches.

** Generate new flow of thought as the audience reacts to you.

**  Influence the audience more artfully

Now, which will you focus on for your next speech?

Apparently, many of you will conclude that it’s better to be audience-focused than self-focused. Yes, this is the more obvious answer. Being aware of your intended focus allows you to craft your speech with that orientation.

Then again, who’s to say you can’t strike a fair balance, if you know how to focus… on excelling!