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SELF-ASSESSMENT FOR SPEAKERS
By Cathleen Fillmore   Printer Friendly Version

No matter how much applause or great feedback we get, the truth is that the only opinion that really counts is our own. While it's the meeting planner or conference organizer who pays us, invites us back or refers us to others, we're still sometimes stuck with the weight of our own opinions.

And as speakers, we're often really tough on ourselves. While there may be some among us who suffer from delusions of grandeur, there are far more speakers who suffer from delusions of insignificance.

We often go over our past performances with a very critical eye. The truth is, we can't be objective about ourselves on the platform - the way we view our abilities depends on how clear our vision is.

For many, it's clouded by misperceptions that end up holding us back. But how do we know whether our vision is clear or not?

Here's an assessment form that helps make any critique more objective and tells speakers what areas of speaking they might need to work on.

In a field where there are few tools to measure progress or to determine problem areas, this assessment is an invaluable guide to determining exactly where one's natural talents lie and where one needs to polish and practice.

PROFESSIONAL SPEAKER'S SELF-ASSESSMENT

Check off any area that you feel you need to work on. Put a star next to any item that you feel you've mastered.

 

______ build rapport with conference organizer
______
submit professionally designed material
______
build rapport with audience members
______
dynamic opening of speech or presentation that captures audience attention
______
well-paced presentation
______
well-modulated voice
______
gripping material that holds audience attention
______
a well-practiced speech based on stories, acted with spontaneity rather than read or memorized
______
authentic (personal) use of humour, stories and material. (No borrowed stories and no unattributed quotes)
______
fresh material, customized for every different audience
______
an uncontrived genuine closing that touches or motivates audience members
______
demonstration of absolute professionalism throughout, from booking to end of conference. (As speakers, we're required to be 'on' the entire time and available to audience members during coffee breaks, etc.)
______
follow-up note of appreciation to conference organizer
______
keeping in touch with former clients and colleagues
______
constantly increasing database of prospective clients
______
taking a course or attending a professional development seminar at least once a month
______
staying on top of administrative matters
______
managing cash flow
______
mastering use of technology in presentations

That's it! How did you measure up? Did a pattern emerge from your profile? This simple assessment tool will help you to stay on track and on top of your career.


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