I have been blogging for around 3 years and I felt I had good handle, on what to say and how to say it. I did research, prepared, practiced and was ready.
About 2 days before the presentation, I received a call from one of the event organizers. He asked, “Would you mind if we videotape your presentation?” I was flattered. I had never been videotaped before, and I told him that if I received a master copy, I would be happy to let them video me.
Fast forward to the day of the presentation
When the presentation was over, everyone applauded. I thought I did a great job.
Yesterday, I was handed the DVD recording of my talk. Last night, I popped some popcorn, called the cat, inserted the DVD, clicked on the machine, and sat back in my easy chair to watch “me in action”.
After 15 minutes of watching my 2 hour presentation, I was gripping the arm of my chair so hard that I couldn’t remove my fingers. In short, it was bad!
Mostly, there wasn’t anything wrong with the content. It was more to do with my hand gestures, the way I stood … (I could give a list of things here, but I want to save myself from any further embarrassment!)
I watched with pain for the next 1 hour and 45 minutes (even the cat ran away!)….
Then I watched it again! This time, I took notes.
I made a complete list of everything I did wrong, printed it out, and plan on carrying it for every presentation!
The moral of the story is if you don’t film yourself, you’ll never know how good or bad you are.
Recording myself gave me a reality (and a reality check!), and it provided a platform for me to learn and improve. Had my talk not been recorded that day, I would have never known the power of recording, and I would have walked away thinking I did a great job.
If I asked you how good you are, you would probably say, “I am pretty good”. I would respond and say, “Without a videotape, you have no idea”.
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