How to Take the 21-Day Speaking Challenge

Speaking Skills are 100% learned behavior. This means that anyone can learn, and anyone can improve. But, it takes intention and work. The 21-Day Challenge has been designed to help you move through an intentional process of speaking improvement.

 The 21-Day Challenge means that for 21 days, you will prepare and give 21 short presentations. It takes no more than 30 minutes/day and you don't have to speak in front of an audience. But, you do have to make a commitment to performing EVERY DAY. If you miss a day, you have to start over.

In our Pay-it-Forward training, we learned several methods for developing content, including what we called 'rinse and repeat' outlines that enable you to develop a common outline and then repeat it across several 'dimensions' of your presentation.

For example, a chronological rinse and repeat takes a common outline like 1) key activities, 2) key challenges, and 3) examples and repeats it across different time periods like Schematic Design, Design Development, Construction Documents.

A spatial rinse and repeat does the same thing, except instead of time periods, you would repeat the outline across different spaces such as Floor One, Floor Two, Floor Three or 'The entry', 'The private work environment' and 'the café or conference space'.

A problem-solution-impact outline is another form of rinse and repeat. For a presentation discussing different challenges or problems, you would create the same outline for each one: What is the problem or challenge? What is our proposed solution? What will the be when we solve it?  You could even add to this outline by adding an example or illustration at the end of each Problem-Solution-Impact sequence.

Finally, my favorite type of rinse and repeat outline is the What-Why-How-Proof (WWHP) outline, which asks you to define What you will do, Why you would do that (the impact), How you would get it done (the sequential method), and a Proof or example that shows you can do what you say you can. This outline can be repeated for as many key actions (Whats) you wish to discuss.

For any rinse and repeat outline, creating a matrix of bullets is a useful way to develop content. Since writing a script takes a long time and isn't effective for most presentations, a bulleted outline within a matrix is both easy to develop and useful as notes or reminders.

Try writing out or drawing (content sketching) your outline. Because the way your brain remembers information is visually, aurally, and kinesthetically (tactually), if you actually draw and outline or create a matrix by hand, then say the words out loud, you will remember the content much better.

Let us know you are taking the challenge, and Meg will send you helpful hints, tips, tricks, and resources along your 21-Day journey.

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