Moving forward: note to self – use notes

Moving forward: note to self – use notes

Stephen Fry doesn’t seem to be a fan, but President Obama can’t be without them.

So what are they? Private jets? Bodyguards? No, speaking notes, of course!

Many in the profession are reluctant to use speaking notes, thinking that to use them would appear unprepared and unprofessional. Yet speaking notes are one of the best resources available to any speaker.

One senior accountant I trained was conscious of his nerves and, as a result, often spoke too quickly when giving presentations. Not only was he highly uncomfortable, but so too was his audience. Aware of the issue he thought the best thing to do was to memorise what he wanted to say and deliver his speech without notes.

As this was not always practical, we looked at a very powerful form of speaker’s notes that he could follow unobtrusively, giving him the confidence to relax and cover his subject matter without worrying that he would forget what he wanted to say. His next presentation was a success. I asked him what had made the difference and, without hesitation, he said ‘notes – and permission to use them.’

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