THE PITFALLS OF PERFECTION
Think back on times you were a victim of boredom and detachment
listening to a speech. Those speakers might have been very
good technically, but just didn't connect with the audience
or the subject.
Ineffective speakers are invariably more focused on themselves
than on you. Their presentations are mechanical and seemingly
indifferent. That can easily happen when you're focusing
on being perfect.
Think about it. If you know someone who's perfect and you
like that person, is it because he or she is perfect, or
in spite of it? As a speaker, perfection isn't a worthy
Public speaking is about sharing ideas and being focused
on the audience - not on how well we look or how perfectly
prepared we might be. Why, then, do we try so hard to give
a perfect presentation when the only possible result is
that we won't be our usual charming selves?
People respond to us when they feel comfortable with us,
when they relate to us, when they feel we're being genuine.
That's all lost when we make an effort to be perfect, when
we try to impress them rather than help them.
Wanting to be perfect makes you focus on your gestures,
or your "uh's" or saying all the words exactly the way you
wrote them down. The result is that you're focused on yourself
rather than on your audience, and you'll look and feel stiff
The most important part of any presentation is your connection
with the audience, that connection that says to them that
you're genuine and believable. If you make that connection,
they'll forgive a misspoken number or less than dynamic
platform skills. Trying to be perfect keeps you from connecting
and keeps you from selling your idea.
Don't try to be perfect. Be human.
For more information, contact:
Barbara Rocha and Associates
PO Box 60521, Pasadena, California 91116