Saturday, April 25, 2009

Public Speaking Performed

I had the opportunity today to be a presenter for a workshop at Sacramento State, on behalf of my company (Northrop Grumman).

The workshop was titled "Workplace Communication - Effectively Navigating the Waters", and there were 55 people registered (a full room).

It was primarily presented by an HR representative from our company, but myself and three other engineers volunteered to be presenters of sub-topics, and leaders of some interactive exercises. My particular sub-topic was "How to Get Along with Your Boss".

I think it generally went well, although I noticed several flaws in my delivery. I usually tend to speak too fast, and today was no exception. And I don't think I gave enough variation in my pauses and inflections.

On the positive side, I was less nervous than usual. I'm pretty sure that I spoke more clearly than other times at least. And I think the content was pretty decent.

It seems to me though that the only way to really improve at public speaking is to simply do more of it. And while I do take advantage of any opportunity that I come across to speak publicly, those opportunities only arise once every 2-3 years at best.

So I'm seriously considering joining or at least looking into Toastmasters. Besides getting the opportunity to practice and perform more often, getting additional feedback could be invaluable.

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