At a recent Professional Development Program I led for the Washington State Association of Counties, a County Commissioner had a brilliant idea! When leading presentation skills, I give the group a planning sheet to fill out before each presentation. Her idea? Think about these questions enroute from one meeting to the next. That way you arrive at the next meeting prepared to focus, contribute and read the other participants. I have another form to fill out for those leading a meeting─with ideas for preparing for the meeting ahead of time. Yet I thought her idea of using this form─having these questions in mind as she moved to the next meeting─was a terrific idea. Here are the questions:
1. What is the situation?
2. What do I need to accomplish?
3. Who is the audience? Who will be involved?
4. What will influence or persuade them─their criteria?
5. What do I need to focus on regarding my nonverbals?
6. What reaction do I expect the audience to have? What are some nonverbal behaviors they may demonstrate that will give me clues as to their reaction?
May you be prepared for the next meeting and the meeting after that and the meeting after that... All day long!