“Only the unprepared are afraid.“ Peyton Manning
That was Peyton’s response when asked “Are you nervous before you speak to a large crowd?”
I was not fearful or nervous before my speech last night for the Dallas-Fort Worth Institute of Management Accountants. The title I chose for my talk was Rich Accountant, Poor Accountant.
Here’s how I prevent speech fright:
- I share my own stories to minimize fear. I know the stories are true because I was in it. Last night to emphasize the positive impact mentoring has on both the mentor and the mentee, I shared my experiences mentoring prison inmates on developing their business plans.
- I prepared 10 PowerPoint slides for the 50-minute talk. Any more than that and I would have fear of running over my time allotment.
- I timed a trial run of my talk in my home office a couple days before the event. My experience doing a dry run by myself is that I talk 50% faster by myself than in front of an audience. I timed myself at 33 minutes by myself. When I delivered the talk last night it ran 50 minutes. Perfecto!
Someone asked pastor Chuck Swindoll how long it took to write Sunday’s sermon. Chuck replied, “Forty years.”
How long did it take me to write Rich Accountant, Poor Accountant? Forty years. How long to deliver it without fear? 50 minutes.