We are definitely living unprecedented challenging times...🙄
The world around us is forcing us to revisit our values, reassess our goals, and reposition ourselves as professionals and experts in our field. And, at the top of it, we need to deal with an invisible threat which has polarised the world... (let's don't go there...) Too much! 😨
But... life goes on and we need to adapt (and fast).
Since March I've been paving my path towards building an online version of my business. And it has been a rollercoaster! So much to learn! But... as you know by know (I hope) being online is not an option anymore. Virtual meetings are everywhere around the globe (and have their advantages).
And now we are getting into integrate Hybrid meetings into the agenda and those are really new challenges! If you are asking what the heck is a hybrid meeting, it is meeting where you have participants in a room (offline) and virtually (online).
I've been doing my research to understand best practices and the pros and cons of such a setup, and I have discovered some very interesting aspects of it that I'm happy to share with you here.
Before getting there, let me be clear. No matter whether you are a speaker, or want to become one, or don't want to become one, presenting in a virtual environment is not a choice anymore, it is a must! Therefore, if you want to remain competitive and be seen as a professional engaged with the future (New Normal), whether if you are a business owner or working for a company, you must learn how to come across effectively in any virtual environment.
👉 Business owners, going your business hybrid is a must!
👉 Corporate leaders, there is no job stability in the horizon, you need to expand your skillset!
I've been giving presentations for a decade now, and I can tell you that throughout this process of transitioning to the virtual world, I had to reassess and reset my presentation skills times and at several levels. Which can also be fun. Not everything is a hurdle. 😊
Therefore, if you want to remain attractive to your market, keep growing in your career and remain in business, do take this seriously.
Here are some key points you have to consider in relation to the world we are living in right now:
Right now the world is FLAT (no, I'm not promoting the "terraplanistas"😱)
Hybrid events are not temporary, they will stay
Live events (on stage as we knew them before) won’t come back soon 😭
Regarding the speaking/presentation business, mind the following:
The client can book a speaker from anywhere in the world
Good points: you can expand your visibility globally as a speaker/presenter. For the ones from countries where speaker’s fees are low in comparison to other parts of the world, it is a big advantage. 🤑 🤑 🤑 The other way around, not really. 🙄 (fees are charged at client's local rate)
Bad points: There is fierce competition already. You need to be extra good and extra prepared
Challenges in the hybrid setup:
You need to become familiar with different technology, and the most used platforms, as the client is the one who chooses which platform will be used for your virtual presentation. Audiences are becoming less forgiving with time… a certain level of tech quality and savviness need to be in place
Have a tech support to assist you during your presentation. Have someone monitor what is happening while you are presenting. This person can be in contact with you directly and give you instructions if something is not working properly (expect techie flaws)
You will be presenting to two types of audiences at the same time, keeping them engaged requires extra practice
The rhythm and pace of your presentation need to be faster
It should be content driven. No time for distractions (different from interaction)
If using slides, they should be clear and clean. Less is more!
You need more breaks. Around every 15-20 min you should break for an of interaction: questions, polls, videos, etc. For instance, when you are doing a 40 min Keynote, consider breaking it every 10 min with some interaction with the audience
Include breakout sessions and Q&As
Time is crucial! No overtime will be tolerated anymore! You need to remain sharp and to the point. Plan ahead the extra time caused by getting people back after a break or breakout session (usually 4-5 min)
Expect technology flaws: Have your presentation professionally recorded (in a studio) and send it to the event organisers before the event (you can pass the cost of the recording to the client). If everything goes wrong and you can’t present virtually, they can use your recording.
The point is, ladies and gentlemen, you can be amazing on stage and suck virtually! Fact! 😳
👉 And here is an opportunity: if you are starting in the speaking business get yourself ready, learn fast, because many stars have faded away
In conclusion, besides the technology and all the requirements for a virtual presentation (hybrid or not), you have to ask yourself, "what is the problem I can solve in my market right now?" Bear in mind that the needs of your audience might have changed in the current times. If so, ask, "do I have the skills to solve their current problems? Is my message aligned to their current needs?"
And get yourself prepared to deliver.
Get coaching with experts on: voice, humour, storytelling, delivery, structure, virtual presentations, etc
Embrace the tech environment and learn is needed
Have a unique content (don’t go pivoting on something you don’t master)
Take a tough look in your content and delivery, improve them
Your content needs to be unique AND tailored to the client’s needs. Always give the client examples they can relate to in their own world
Customise your video-reel to show your uniqueness
The world (and companies) needs people with a message which can bring people together, especially right now when they are feeling apart.
So, get support, learn, prepare, and practice, practice and practice more.
Yes, I can, and I will, help you. Get in touch.