I still remember the day when she called me in the evening. She got my number via the internet and she called to ask whether I give the Presentation Skills training? I told her yes, and also shared that the training workshop is scheduled for the next month so she is most welcome to join.
She then said as the workshop is a month away, Can I share her few tips to improve her Presentation Skills now. She sounds passionate about learning so I shared a few tips - to improve speech preparation, presentation practice and getting rid of stage fear. Before I put the phone down, I shared one last piece of advice with her - Seek an EXCUSE to speak not a REASON.
Just like this girl, many people call me regularly for some kind of training or other. They want to learn new things to improve their present self and make their future self better.
I am not focusing on public speaking on presentation skills rather than talking about the BIG PICTURE, that is the picture of LIFE. Just like in public speaking and presentation skills people want to come onto the stage to present themselves but only if someone will call them, they will go. If someone will force them, then they will participate in some activity. The question is why do most people seek a reason to make themselves better?
The important lesson in personal development is that if you are not seeking an excuse then you are letting yourself down. You seek an excuse to show the world that you have the talent, you can speak well, you can perform also. And that is what I told that girl on the phone and she told me that she will do it and that is what you also need to do.
When I started my journey as a trainer. I didn't seek the reason to speak, I sought an excuse because I was just at the beginning of my professional career. I also knew that people will not pay me every time for my training. When I used to talk to School and College Principals they sometimes tell me that they will not be able to pay me for the training session. I tell them - It is OK. Because my agenda, especially at the starting of my career was not money - it was to speak in as many Educational Institutes as possible to improve my speaking skills and gain confidence as a professional trainer. And that helped me to grow as a professional speaker.
- If you are a fresher Trainer - seek an excuse to come on the stage so that you can gain the confidence of speaking.
- If you are a Sales Manager or a Sales Executive - seek an excuse to go to a customer or a prospect so that you can improve your Selling Skills or Communication Skills.
- If you are a Leader in an organization don't wait for other managers on your seniors to tell you to lead others, you seek an excuse to lead others, create leaders and achieve that common organizational objective.
- If you are a customer care executive whose work is to give WOW customer service - don't seek a reason but an excuse to WOW them, unconditionally.
- Have you ever heard that any manager is looking for an opportunity to praise his/her team member just for nothing? It doesn't happen in our society. Managers - seek an EXCUSE to praise your people not a reason.
Friends, if you are not growing in your career, it may be a reason that you are not seeking an EXCUSE to initiate and improve yourself, take that leap of faith. Move out of your comfort zone,
And seek an EXCUSE to grow yourself not a REASON.