Randy Lindsay is the Chief Executive Officer of Futureworx, a community-based organization that is dedicated to helping people overcome obstacles to employment. He works in the field of employment, skill development and training. He has also hosted the Skills for Success webcast at the last five Skills Canada National Competitions (SCNC).
Check out Randy’s expert tips on public speaking and doing presentations.
- Just go for it! You may not get another opportunity like this again. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!
- Do your homework. Know what you are speaking about, and/or who you are interviewing. Try to come up with questions that explore not only the topic, but also the person.
- React in the moment. If you get a response from the audience or from the person you are interviewing, explore that area more.
- Share some things about yourself or the person being interviewed. However remember to also remain focused on the topic.
- Bring your authentic self. There is only one you, let yourself shine!
- Don’t let the pressure get to you! Presenting is like a ball that you can throw to someone else. If you fumble or need to take a breath, pass the ball. Ask a question to your audience and allow them to participate. Pro tip – have a few topics and questions ready in your back pocket.
- Connect with the topic or interviewee by trying to find a personal thing that connects you. Be passionate about what you’re doing.
- Tell a story. I have had people come up to me years later and recount a story I told during a presentation. It allows many to relate to information that otherwise they would not.
- Use humor, when appropriate, as it allows people to get comfortable and provides a pause for you and your audience, or interviewee.
- Dress comfortably. Make sure that you feel good in what you are wearing.
- You don’t have to know everything. If a question comes up that you can’t answer, simply say so.
Follow these tips and it will go better than you think. It will also open doors to places you never imagined. Also, let yourself be inspired by this famous quote by Mark Twain: Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So just go for it!