Thursday, December 19, 2013

Best. ROI. Ever: Why invest in speaker or presentation training?

Sometimes, I hear (or find out) that prospective clients are wary of investing in speaker or presentation training. That might stem from the common idea that polishing your speaking skills is a frill, window-dressing, "charm school"--we've found a lot of ways to make fun of the effort to communicate smoothly and with engaging content, haven't we? Others worry about the cost and the time involved, sounding "too slick" or just reject the notion that their presenters can be trained, pegging them as beyond hope. That's also the outlook of any executive worrying that spending professional development funds will go to waste when the trainees leave the company or organization. In all those scenarios, the return on investment seems low.

That's why I love Peter Baeklund's quote, above. If you're debating whether to invest in speaker or presentation skills-building for a lead executive or an up-and-coming team, ask yourself what will happen if you don't make that investment, and they stay with the company. Then you can envision years of bad PowerPoint presentations...talks that go on too long or don't get to the point...leaders who are never asked to keynote major professional gatherings...junior executives who can't tee up a persuasive presentation for the decision-makers...senior executives whom you are unwilling to let speak in front of the CEO.

If the investment is in your own presenting or speaking skills, cast your mind to years of never making partner because you can't express yourself...no chance of getting elected president of your professional organization...feeling tongue-tied when asked to make the case for something on the spot...continuing to feel over-stressed and under-prepared when you give a talk or speech...getting exhausted by speaking gigs because you haven't figure out how to manage your introversion as a public speaker.

What happens if you don't work on those challenges and problems? Don't find out the hard way. Invest in training or coaching for yourself or your team in 2014. Email me at eloquentwoman[at]gmail[dot]com to learn about your options.

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