Presenting to Business: The Geek Perspective



The art of public speaking is one of the world’s most essential abilities to master.  Without it how do we get information across to members of an organization effectively?  As workers we are required by our employers to present our ideas to the staff and are expected to do so in a fluent and informal manner.  For us geeks this is a nightmare!  So how exactly do we geeks get our presentations across without sounding like our tongues have just been thorough the meet grinder?

Here we have a video of the legendary Don Knotts, known from the classic TV series The Andy Griffith Show, performing a nervous speech in the movie The Ghost and Mr. Chicken.

One thing is for sure it isn’t easy to speak out over hundreds of people let alone a small class.  In Don’s case, his role in the movie is to play a pretty geeky guy who acts like a confident and brave person in the community.  When in reality is a pretty goofy character and his role provides a lot of humor for the viewers.

But like I said, how do we speak to hundreds or thousands of people when we get too nervous to speak in front of our own classes of 20 to 30 students?  Well one thing is for sure that the nervousness never goes away.  The biggest speech I have ever given was to a church of about 400 to 500 members over the death of my grandfather.  It was nerve racking as you would expect and it was awful.  Not only did I have to mourn the death of my grandpa I had to talk about it too.   The task of presenting was not easy for me.  Especially considering I am the one out of my family that can barely muster up enough courage to walk on the stage.

Now the Urshan legacy is full of pastors and ministers who are very well known for their great presentation skills.  So you could imagine the pressure I felt when I had to step into my grandfather’s shoes and give a speech. How did I overcome the pressure? Well I didn’t know it at the time but I followed the five step process to preparing a presentation in The Geek Leader’s Handbook.

The Five Steps to Preparing a Presentationlecture

1. Clarify Your Goal

2. Get Into Their Heads

3. Craft a Transformation (write it)

4. Present, Connect, and Resonate

5. Conclude with a Call to Action

Public speaking is one of a Geek’s hardest tasks to do.  Not so much in terms of difficulty but in terms of stress.  We get put out of our comfort zone.  When we get thrown in front of people instead of computers we tend to freak out.  But as everyone knowns eventually we will have to be upfront explaining the new software for the company or the new tech for more efficient work and they will be expecting us to explain what the stuff is and why we need it.  If we can convey those facts to the audience in a smooth and fluent way, we will gain the support of our crowd.  But just like the book says, the crowd wants you to succeed.

In closing, here is another example of nervous public speaking by none other than Don Knotts as a sports announcer.

Always remember to stay confident and know the audience wants you to do good!

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