[Image by Gerd Altmann of Pixabay]

Recently when I was coaching a new client, she expressed significant frustration about practicing her presentation.  What she stated was the amount of time that practice required.  We’ve all been there and while not fun, I believe practice is vitally important when preparing your preparation. How we go about that may differ.

What I recommended to my client was a term I’ve often used, which was chunk.  When we chunk, we only look at one piece of our presentation, as opposed to our entire presentation.  Depending on your presentation, you will have a particular number of chunks.  For example, you may think of these as separate chunks: your opening remark, your content (body) and for this example let’s say you had two main points, and then your closing.  In this situation, you would have five chunks.  Of course, you may have more or less.  I’ll leave that up to you.

The point is that when you practice, you don’t need to go through the entire presentation each time. Instead, you would divide your presentation into chunks as I’ve described, and decide which of those chunks required additional practice.  This is exactly what I do and find it to be a very effective process. Typically, I end up practicing my opening and closing chunks as I find them to be the least fluid.  Now once I have my opening and closing sounding the way I want them to sound, I will go back and practice my entire presentation. One option is to record yourself as you practice since listening to the playback is quite useful

Practicing in this manner not only is efficient use of my time but it really makes sense to me.  I spend more time on those chunks that sound choppy to me or about which I feel less confident.  Once I determine that these parts are fluid, I feel I can proceed and include them in the presentation.  This is exactly what I recommended to my client who was concerned about the length of time required for her to practice.

You may want to consider this a step by step approach which is one way of only taking on what needs work and may lead to you experiencing greater success.  Try it and see what you think.  You’re always welcome to contact me by phone 518-664-6004 or email dale@profitablespeech.com and we can figure it out together.