How to Reflect Authority into Your Presentations
To keep your audience with you and motivate them to take actions, they have to believe that what you say has merit.
You convince them of that by portraying yourself as an authority on your subject matter.
If people see that you are authentic, that you have a knowledge base from which you speak and you understand the connection between what you are saying and how it translates to real life, they will accept your thoughts and be motivated by you.
But if they see you as uncertain, walking on a fence between “you could do this” or “you could do that,” they are confused.
So as a motivational speaker, it is of primary importance that you let your authority shine through from the moment you step onto the stage until you shake the last hand offered to you as you exit the building.
To emit that authority, you have to control your physical and mental presence.
If you want examples of what this looks like, watch any of the Tony Robins videos on YouTube. Watch his powerful body language, his stance, his tone that is steady and well-modulated, and his power gestures to emphasize his point.
A good example of Robins in action is his TED talk, which you can view at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BwFOwyoH-3g
How can you learn to project yourself as an authority so that you can motivate others and inspire them and add value to their lives?
Be relevant before you are anything else
No matter how well-crafted your remarks are and how authoritatively you deliver them, if they aren’t relevant to the audience you are addressing, you won’t captivate them.
As a rule of thumb, I spend almost as much time researching my audience as I do my subject matter. It is impossible to be relevant to anyone if you have no idea about their lives, their work, their families and their culture. By investing the time to find out, you can tailor the subject matter you know to the items that will resonate with your audience.
You can be as authoritative as anyone, but if your subject matter doesn’t touch some part of what they really care about, you will miss your mark.
To test that theory, think about going to listen to a medical scientist talk for half an hour about a new procedure and technology. Unless you are in the same business, you listen politely, but you won’t leave excited or inspired or pass their story on to others.
But if that same scientist tells you that when this technology finds its way to your local hospital, it will save the lives of anyone with kidney disease, cardiac disease or diabetes, think of how your interest would perk up. If you are not impacted with any of those conditions yourself, you would certainly know someone who was, and you would want to remember the remarks to tell them about the hope that exists for helping them.
Take the time to learn to deliver without reading a script
A motivational address is a conversation you are having with people who have a need for certain information and ideas that will add value to their lives and help them solve their problems.
You can’t have a conversation if you read it to people.
Imagine walking up to a friend, pulling out a sheet of paper, and saying “How are you today?”
They would look at you puzzled. They would think that if you had to read what to say to them, you likely didn’t care too much about them. They would think that you had to be prompted to know what to say to them, so likely you didn’t know much about social graces.
When you have to read your remarks, you are undermining your authority. You are telling the audience that you don’t know your subject very well, that you have to be prompted.
Worst of all, you are putting a barrier (a sheaf of papers) between them and you.
You may say it is impossible to deliver a 20-minute address without reading it. I say, go to YouTube and watch many great TED talks and tell me how these speakers are doing it.
One technique many speakers use is to break their speech into four quadrants, and name the quadrants. Then take the first letters and all you have to remember is one short word to stay on track.
For example, if you were talking about enhancing relationships, you might break your speech into the four quadrants of Honesty, One-on-one time, Motivation to make it work, and Empathy.
All you have to remember is the word HOME. Each letter triggers a quadrant.
Then break each quadrant down to three key points. If you are afraid you will forget those points, you might have one card to prompt you, but keep in mind that most people can easily remember three points.
All of a sudden you have broken down your 20-minute address into a format your memory can sustain.
Each speaker has tricks; study them and their speaking patterns and you will find other innovative ways to keep on track without reading.
Speak in definite terms and slow your pace
Two more tips to come across as an authority on your subject involve the words you use and how you deliver them.
Speak with confidence. Say “I will” instead of “It is possible that…” Say “I know” instead of “I am almost certain that…”
When you deliver your words, force yourself to speak slowly. A person who has real authority doesn’t need to rush. When you are nervous and unsure of yourself, you have a tendency to race and your voice rises.
Breathe deeply. Force yourself to slow down and modulate your voice to an even tone.
Paula Morand, CSP is a leadership building, revenue boosting, strategy expanding keynote speaker, author and visionary. This dreaming big and being bold expert brings her vibrant energy, humor and wisdom to ignite individuals, organizations and communities to lead change, growth and bold impact. 23 years, 25,000 clients, 19 countries, 11 books, former radio personality, 10x award winning entrepreneur and humorous emcee.
To check out Paula’s newest book, “Bold Courage: How Owning Your Awesome Changes Everything” go to Amazon http://ow.ly/i8yW307ix67
To book Paula to speak email firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll-free 1-888-502-6317.