Class Introduction & Warm-up
And we are from Speechless.
And this course is called 'Impact Your Audience With Transformative Presentations'. That is a mouthful.
And this first lesson includes our introduction and our warmup as usual.
So we're gonna kind of focus on what it means to have a transformational presentation and be a transformational presenter. And these are the lessons we're gonna go over. The first one is knowing your audience. Maybe not necessarily individually and personally, but who's in the room and how do you need to speak to them.
We want to give you some tools for how to give your talk a really specific goal and you'll walk us through an exercise that helps us do that.
We'll do an exercise that focuses on vocal variety so you can find different levels in the way that you speak.
And we're gonna have some fun practicing Q&A, so being ready when we get those questions and answers and using that improv thinking to apply it to that.
And we'll wrap everyt...
hing up with a final lesson that will not only be the culmination of this class, but our entire course, all six classes. We're gonna learn and reflect like an improvisor. So, we're gonna go through some of the takeaways from not only this class, but some of the other ones as well.
So Sammy, you've been walking us through every class that we've done, a little bit of our Speechless POINT system and now, we're on transformation. Will you talk to us a little bit about that?
Yeah, so, reiterate again for the people in the studio audience, but if this is your first class you're watching, the POINT system is not only our training system, but it's also the judge's criteria for our live improvisational comedy show. But it stand for Presence, Originality, Inclusion, Narrative, and Transformation. We've had a particular class on each one of these points of emphasis as we call them, and this is the last one. It's called transformation and transformation is really about the impact you wanna make. It's the impact you wanna make on the people that are in the room. It's the impact you wanna make and the transformation you wanna make personally. This could be about your own leveling up and development as a presenter. And we've also worked with organizations where we're trying to transform their teams or their entire organizations around a better presentation process and communication culture.
I enjoyed that. And we also want to remind you that we're doing improv thinking and improvisation and the word improv can mean a lot of different things to a lot of people, and it can also feel a little bit scary. So we want to remind you what the expectations are as we improvise together and as you improvise at home. So please be spontaneous. That means whatever idea comes to your brain, we want you to share that with us, say it out loud and embrace it. That is the right idea for this moment in time.
Yeah, and making others look and feel good really just means deporting them, being there for them. You're all in this together. Most of the exercises you're gonna do, just like in every other class, for those of you at home, are probably things you haven't done before and if you're doing them with a partner, and even if you're doing them just by yourself at home. Just take care of yourself and know that it's something for you to have a good time and learn from and learn from mistakes, so just support each other in the process.
We're going to again use the scale of 'yes, and'-ing ideas. So how do we say yes and validate ideas and then how do we add and build to them?
And finally, we're gonna have fun. Have we had fun so far gang?
Yes, I've had a great time.
We've had a great time.
We have had a great time.
Mostly off-camera, but yes, it's been great.
It's so much fun.
But thank you so much. We're gonna move on into our first preparation warmup.
Yeah, Sammy's mentioned this in other classes and I just want to reiterate and amplify what you said which is that every time we start a new class, we wanna step back into warmup and get our brains in the headspace that we need to be, and our bodies, in the space that we need them to be in, so that we're really practicing what we preach in this idea of warming up and really giving ourselves time to be present and get into that space. So this is an exercise we call best audience statues. So you, for the moment, are going to be our statues. And so, we want to start thinking about body language and how we read body language, but also how we communicate through our body language. So can everyone in our audience just show me how you're feeling by the way that you sit. Can you exaggerate that a little bit more for me? Oh wow, we have some work to do. Can you exaggerate just a little bit more? Great, Heidi's with us. Heidi's ready to go. Love it. Now, will you show us the opposite of that? So whatever you think the opposite is the right thing. (laughing) Great, I love it. Yeah, too much caffeine there. Can you exaggerate it just a little bit more?
What is happening with Jonathan's tongue? (laughing)
Great, you can sit down. Sammy, how would you like our audience to feel after this class today? What's a word that comes to mind to describe that?
There's so many words.
I will pick the first one which is energized, because I want you to feel energized about going out and proactively doing some of these things. So show me an energized audience.
Yeah, what we would be looking for for energized. Oh, I love that. Such clear body language. And we all know, the body language is very similar. We all sort of share what we think that that might look like. I would like for you to feel inspired. Can you show me inspired? I and Sammy, we have inspired you in whatever way you need it to be. Inspired.
Similar to energized.
They are very good actors by the way.
They're really great at this. I would love for Sammy and I to let go of this and I want someone else to come up here. Will someone else join me up here, just for a moment, and then we're gonna let you see what it feels like to have the audience sit and behave in different ways. So, someone come up here and join me and make me look good by coming up here with me. See how I did peer pressure?
Thank you Heidi. I know, thank you. Heidi, what's something that when you're often presenting in a meeting or you're giving a more formal presentation, what's a word that you would say you want from your audience? What do you want to give them or what do you want to get from them?
Oh, can we see engaged? Oh yeah, what are some of the things you notice, body language wise?
They came forward.
Oh yeah, they moved forward. Eyes went right to you, right? So it was so clear that they're engaged with you and looking at you. Awesome. What's something else that you might want to get from them?
That they understand.
Oh, so show us that you understand what Heidi is sharing with you, telling you. Oh, I see some head-nodding. It's similar to inspired.
Some note writing. Unless she was a character artist.
Oh, that's me playing tennis, thank you.
What else might you want?
That you are going to leave, not only being more inspired, but taking something way.
Oh, so they got something out of it. They got it. Oh no, someone's head blew up.
Another head has popped off.
Great, thank you for doing that. It feels nice doesn't it?
It really does feel nice. Would someone else like to come up and try? I saw people take a breath in. Great, Jonathan, thank you.
What's something that you would want that we maybe, haven't heard yet from someone? What might you want from your audience?
I'd love great questions. The questions are just coming out of you.
They have questions.
I can see these questions.
Oh, look at that. You did that.
What's something you don't want to see?
Oh, that they're falling asleep. Oh boy, you didn't do that. They're great actors. See, I told you? So now you see that they're falling asleep, so what do you want to change sleep to? What do you want to do instead? What do you want them to feel?
Oh, you want them to feel motivated. Great, so we're gonna leave it at motivation. So we wanna see that you are personally motivated by what Jonathan has done for us. That body language is gonna really show and tell us. Beautiful, thank you for trying that (laughing). Jared is going to record it and maybe steal. He's so motivated. He's gonna steal your ideas.
I like that he's miming objects now, that's great.
And this is just a great warmup for us to start thinking about not only what we are like as an audience because when we're sitting in front of other people, we wanna remember what we're giving to the room and the energy we're bringing to that space. So as an audience member, we also get to give something to the speaker and as the speaker, we want to be thinking about what are we looking for and am I seeing some of those cues? It doesn't mean that we necessarily want to be playing to the audience. We don't wanna be structuring a talk and if I don't get exactly what I want, I'm gonna go off-track and try something different. But it does mean that I'm able to adapt, or I'm able to adjust or I'm able to notice. So this point isn't working. Maybe I need to move on. Maybe it's that thing we did earlier of advancing color. I need to give them color or I need to advance, so that we're able to adapt to our audience and really notice body language in a lot of different ways. And notice also, how similar some things are. So, engaged looks like exited, but it can also even look a little bit like tired, because you're body language for some of you came in. So when you were engaged, you were like this, but when you were tired, you might have been like this, right? So there are little subtle things, too, for us to think about of how we might misread those little moments and maybe internalize it in a way that isn't healthy for us. So, we just wanna be really aware of what we're doing as an audience and how we're reading that as a speaker, and also what we're giving as a speaker.
And one final note I'll make, because this is really fantastic if you ever have the opportunity to rehearse with a group within your team of organization. It's a great exercise for creating a more positive presentation culture. Because a lot of times when there's rehearsals for different types of presentations... We work with a lot of companies that have public-facing conferences where they give big key notes and they do all these rehearsals and the rehearsals are very beneficial in a lot of ways. But since everyone's at work while they're rehearsing these key notes, everyone's on their laptops in the theater or in the big meeting room while someone's on stage by themselves. And while they're on strange, their time is very valuable. Everyone's is and it's just really important to be able to give to them during that rehearsal, even before the actual performance itself because that will make them feel better, like they're doing better. Because if they are getting nothing, everyone's faces are right into their laptops, which makes sense because you're at work, they're not gonna get energized by that and they're gonna carry over into the performance however they felt. People say it about sports and athletes all the time. You want to practice the way you wanna play and you wanna play the way you practice. So, however you practice presenting and communicating is going to really affect the way that you actually give that talk. And if no one's giving you anything during your rehearsals, you're probably gonna have a very similar energy when you're in the room, even if that energy is, 'Well, no one cares about this. 'No one's listening.' And that's gonna show in your body language, maybe even in your volume, maybe in the way that you speak. So if you ever rehearse with other people, really utilize this exercise.
And do you mean that we can ask them to do that? If I'm giving my presentation, I ask, or how do you feel like we implement that with a group of people?
Yeah, you can use this exercise in the way that we just did it and say, "Show me an excited audience." Just so I have that feeling, almost like a placebo effect. Or it could be as simple as, I know this sounds stupidly simple, but I've had some of the organizations we work with, all the advice I said was, "Can we just one person close their laptops and one person "is like a presentation partner for another person? "And you're the only person who's not working "while they're up there just so that someone "is looking at them, even if you're not enthralled. "Just to see eyes from another person "is better than no eyes from an entire room." And that was, apparently, pretty ground-breaking in terms of that rehearsal process because no one had ever really thought about what you feel like when no one's watching you. They just thought they needed to be in the same room together.
And so it helped to make those rehearsals even more effective because they weren't just up there practicing the language and the route memorization of it. They were really getting to see what impacted an audience and then make adaptations and changes from that position as opposed to just being in a vacuum onstage.
And also, just don't feel alone. You feel alone if you look out to a room of your colleagues, who may be very supportive, but also very busy, and they're all heads down in their laptops. You feel like you're alone and no one's paying attention.
Yeah, thanks for making that point.