Before they realize there is huge power in deep preparation, some of our clients at first resist the idea of practicing a lot. They think practicing a lot is going to kill the spontaneity in their speech.

What they haven’t realized yet is that you will never give the same speech twice. Every time you give the speech, dig deep and find something fresh and new to give the audience. Maybe the “dig deep” that you’re going to do is explore a part of the story you’ve never explored before. Or maybe the “dig deep” is experimenting with humor, and seeing if you can get the audience to laugh out loud at that one particular sentence that they’ve never laughed at before.

Audiences love this little bit of extra attention from speakers. Not only have you shown that you respect their time by preparing for them, you ALSO show them that you care enough to find something special just for them.

The thing is, most people can’t explore a speech that deeply the first time they give it. They’re just trying to hold it together — to not explode on stage, basically.

Michael Phelps didn’t show up at the Olympics and say, “I didn’t swim at all this year, because I wanted to be fresh.” He also didn’t show up at the Olympics and say, “I’m going to swim this race exactly like every other race I’ve ever swum.” He showed up at the Olympics and said, “I’ve been training for this for years, AND I’m going to dig deep and find something new to say.”

About Matt Krause

Matt began his professional life as an import buyer, and since 2006 has been teaching companies how to connect with their investors and clients better. His clients work in Istanbul, Bucharest, and Sofia for companies like Allianz, 3M, P&G, Citibank, and Reckitt Benckiser. He also walked across Turkey and wrote a book about it.