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Go ahead, I dare you…

Why do rehearsals almost always tend to assume that everything will go perfectly from a technical perspective? Conscientious speakers exhaustively practice the delivery of their presentation and will usually be sure to practice answering difficult questions. The only problem is that there are many other things that might go wrong during a presentation that have nothing to do with how they are delivering the content — things that can completely derail a speaker who isn’t prepared for the unexpected.

Earlier in my career when I part of a corporate internal speaker support team, depending on the temperament of the speakers I was working with, I would simulate a projector or sound system failure. It’s not something I would do frequently and I would be sure to do it only during the more low-key, informal rehearsals. It was a terrific reminder for the speakers and it gave us a chance to talk about exactly how we wanted to handle it when these sort of things happened during the actual presentation. If you are in a position that allows you to take rehearsing to this level of realism without limiting your future career options, you should look for opportunities to practice these sort of mishaps.

Go ahead, I dare you…

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