Speaking Off-The-Cuff is a Fool’s Game
Sun Tzu Principle: “Order or disorder depends on organisation.”
Study any military campaign and you will find, at the heart of strategy, is organisation.
Sun Tzu shared his wisdom in The Art of War, 2300 years ago, and told us the difference between order and disorder is organisation.
Organisation is about readiness. Launching into a battle without being ready is a fool’s game. Standing in front of an audience and speaking off-the-cuff is a fool’s game.
When it comes to public speaking, business pitch or presentations, there are two aspects to readiness. (1) Your head and (2) Your heart.
So today I want to share a thought or two about getting your head ready.
Head-readiness is about clarity of purpose. It also means doing your homework. We just spent the last five or six podcasts talking about reconnaissance… doing your homework… which is the first step to winning the battle of public speaking. If you haven’t listened to them yet, go back, check them out.
It’s not a matter of memorising a script, it’s about clarity.
Here’s a little process that works every time, all the time. You must have clarity on your content so you can focus on the delivery. Focus releases the passion you have for the subject. Passion brings commitment and its commitment that delivers the result for you.
Head-readiness starts with reconnaissance but it doesn’t stop there. Getting your head in the game means you have direction. You know what point follows what point. You know the story-lines and how they are connected to the meaning and relevance of the audience.
Speaking off-the-cuff is a fool’s game. Every top performing professional I’ve ever interviewed, talked to, or read about, all say the same thing… there is no substitute for head-readiness.
Organisation is a speaker’s best friend.
Here’s the action thought of the day… if you want to achieve platform mastery, you need to start with clarity. Avoid at all costs the urge to speak off-the-cuff. Get clarity on your content so you can focus on delivery and release your passion to speak with commitment and get the results you deserve.