Keep it Fresh

Distracted and bored employees sitting at a business presentation, EPS 8 vector cartoon, no transparencies

Stage actors face an ironic challenge. They spend almost a month learning their lines, but once the show opens, they have to make eight performances a week sound fresh and spontaneous. Coming across as rote, memorized or pro forma is death on stage. It is the same for non-actors. When networking, trying a case, or pitching clients, you owe it to your audience to keep your material fresh.

Review your opening content. Does it grab your audience from your very first words; have specific visual details; and include a challenge you faced? Do you express why you do what you do or why this meeting/pitch is important? Do the words sound and feel like you?

After you’ve rehearsed your open (out loud), change it up. Cut and paste your material as if it were a Word doc. Keep it in your voice and avoid a memorized tone and cadence. You have a luxury that stage actors don’t—to use the frame you’ve created but add spicy details each time you present. This will keep your delivery bright and shiny.

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