In the early 1600s around Plymouth, Massachusetts the pilgrims observed days of thanksgiving to offer gratitude for the bountiful harvests. Some 400 years later we celebrate a day of Thanksgiving to offer gratitude for our bounty -- friends, family, good health and good fortune.
As I reflect on all the things in my life I am grateful for it occurs to me that as presenters we have some special bounty for which to offer thanks:
1. The gift of our audience's time. Thinking of the time an audience spends with us as a gift can subtly change the filter through which we look at them. We can be thankful for their attention and their interest which can help us be more focused on ensuring we give them value in exchange.
2. Tools that make us more effective and more engaging with our audiences. Things like Canva, PowToon, Crowd Mics and Poll Everywhere. Not that any of these [or any other tools] will take the place of well organized content designed to meet our audiences' needs and a well practiced delivery. But assuming those are covered, the many speaker tools available today can make our presentations more interesting, memorable and polished.
3. Our opportunity to share ideas and touch hearts and minds. This is an enormous privilege that we must not take lightly. John F. Kennedy said, "The only reason to give a speech is to change the world." And while we may see that purpose as rather grand, each of us has our own "world" where we can influence thoughts and perspectives.
4. The ability to improve as a presenter and find more ways to offer value to our audiences. Presenting is one of those skills where we can always get better. Even when we're at the top of our game, our audiences make every presentation different, offering us the opportunity to continually hone our craft. From presentation skills training to Toastmasters, from more practice to increased audience needs assessment, we can challenge ourselves to deliver more value.
What else would you add to the list?
www.flickr.com/Be Thankful C.C. 2.0