What Can I Work on Today to Make My Next Presentation Better?

If you wanted to increase your physical fitness, would you run two marathons per year and do nothing else in between?

When we want to improve our communication skills but only think about them when we have to give a big speech or presentation, it’s the equivalent of lacing up our brand-new running shoes right before the marathon. We haven’t spent any time getting to know our style, our pace,  or the obstacles we may face.

Just like with physical fitness, we’re never finished working on our communication skills. And like with exercise, we can work on various aspects of these skills every day. If you know you tend to over-explain, practice being clear and concise when you’re in your weekly team meeting. If you’ve got a filler word habit, start noticing the circumstances that bring it out, and slow down so you can practice eliminating the ums and uhs.

Talking feels as natural as breathing, and it can be hard to notice what we may want to change or tweak. But waiting until the big day is just too late.

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