The most essential business skill is the ability to “Self-Edit.”
This process involves the tailored creation and delivery of a great message that is not only powerful but also concise. This message must also carry an authentic voice, that of the speaker, which is well suited to the audience.
Terri Sjodin, Owner of Sjodin Communications, National Best Seller and National Speaker, solves the difficulty of creating a perfect commercial as “The solution depends on your ability to “self-edit” and apply a tight analysis of your content—keeping the best parts of your message, and dropping the unnecessary—while still giving a rock-solid talk.”
Sjodin continues on to describe how to time the elevator speech or personal commercial as a process that must be practiced and timed out loud. The speech must be balanced into specific points and or broken down into key important items. For example, if there are 6 points and 3 minutes, 20 seconds should be designated to each point, which a conclusion to summarize and close the presentation or personal commerical.
“As you practice, you will develop almost a sixth sense about the timing. After a while, you will better understand how to flow through your content with smooth transitions from talking point to talking point. The best way to stay on track is to literally track the time and become aware of what it feels like when the clock is ticking,” says Sjodin.
So how does one accomplish this?
Each presenter, job seeker, networker and peer must be aware of the common complaints his or her audience feels, and how to improve his or her talk next time, as well as how to get the buy-in of the audience.
Here a list of common complaints to get you started when considering your next presentation, conversation or meeting:
Push-back No. 1: I’ve heard this all before.
Self-edit trigger question: How do you open your talk in a fresh and timely way that creates an awakening in the mind of the listener?
Push-back No. 2: I don’t need this.
Self-edit trigger question: Ask yourself why do they need you, your company, and why now?
Push-back No. 3: I don’t think this is going to fix my problem.
Self-edit trigger question: Did you really show and illustrate for the listener the solution for how you can fix their problem?
Push-back No. 4: I don’t see myself doing that.
Self-edit trigger question: Did you help the listener “see their possible new future” and help them to visualize the change as worthwhile?
Push-back No. 5: I’ll think about it.
Self-edit trigger question: Did you “close” at the end of your talk? Meaning did you ask them to specifically do something, and, if so, what did you ask them to do? (Note: Many people conclude but do not close.)
Push-back No. 6: I’m bored.
Self-edit trigger question: Is my talk interesting, fresh, entertaining, insightful and/or fun? Did I tell a good story and use clever analysis?
Push-back No. 7: This is taking too long.
Self-edit trigger question: Did you let them know up front how long your talk would be and what you were going to cover? Did you stay within the time limits they requested?
Push-back No. 8: Where is this presentation going? He’s all over the board!
Self-edit trigger question: Begin with your goal and ask yourself, What do I really want to have happen as a result of my “talk or presentation” when I share it with others? Does it take the listener on a journey, with a clear beginning, middle, and end? Is there a sense of progression to your message, leading to a natural conclusion and action step?
By taking these audience push-back complaints into consideration and applying them to your personal pitch or next presentation, the message and outcomes are sure to be a success.
To read more regarding Terri Sjodin and other communication tactics visit: