Have you ever attended an event where the emcee, host or speaker at the front of the room shouts out to the audience, “I’m so glad to be here,” but does not look at anyone? Instead their eyes are glued to their notes, or a power point slide, and that’s how they begin their presentation. Shame on them! They have failed to energize and activate the audience.
When we think of the thousands of speakers around the world, on stage, in training rooms, at sales meetings and in boardrooms, we see people who have an enormous wealth of knowledge and information under their belt. Yet, if the knowledge they are sharing and the information they are offering is not infused with energy and enthusiasm by the presenter, chances are high that much of it will fall by the wayside, unclaimed and unused by those listening.
To make a difference, speakers must be able to jump-start their audience. They must be able to stimulate the minds and hearts of the people seated in front of them. Some presenters are more charismatic, and others more electric; however, all presenters to be effective need to energize their groups. While we need information to do our jobs, it’s the energy that moves us into action. It’s the energy that grabs us and makes us feel. That is how we connect with the speaker, and how we connect with each other.
This is not an energy that requires you to hang from the rafters or race about the room at high speed or become a drama queen, unless that is who you really are. The energy that I am talking about is our natural power and is often referred to as our enthusiasm or passion.
Think of drive, stamina and strength; that is energy. The ability to act and move forward or to lead others is synonymous with energy. The ability to energize is more than just being confident. When a presenter energizes, they motivate. They empower those around them. Think Oprah. Think Anthony Robbins. Whether you love or hate’ em, there is no denying these two individuals are star examples of presenters who energize and activate their audience into doing what they want them to do.
How we move in front of others, how we carry our voice, as well as the words we use and the eye contact we make, sends signals about how we feel about our topic, about being present, and about our audience. All these carry energy and are determining factors in our speaking success. If we aren’t excited about what we have to say, how can we expect others to be excited? No matter how many times we may have given the same presentation there will always be someone new sitting at the edge of their seat ready to listen. As speakers and presenters – that is is our time to energize and activate the audience.