What is Platform Presence? It can be felt but not seen. Some speakers have it, others don’t. How did they get it?

There are three major aspects involved with Platform Presence. The most important one is absence of fear.

From the instant someone with Platform Presence stands and begins moving toward the platform they are completely at peace, both with themselves and their surroundings. That powerful peaceful presence cannot be faked. It is either there or it isn’t. In either case, the audience feels it.

How can anyone achieve that level of self-confidence and personal peace? That is one of reasons for being actively involved with Toastmasters. Every time you tackle Table Topics it gets a little less fearful. The same thing is true with your speeches. Fears are overcome by facing them and working through them. When is the last time you heard of someone being shot while giving their icebreaker?

We may think we die but we never do and no matter what your subject, 80% of your message results from your feelings. When you are on top of your game your audience knows it and when you are not, your audience knows that also. It’s like using humor. To be funny … you must feel funny. In no other way will humorous lines work.

The second vital aspect of Platform Presence is choice of subject matter. To have Platform Presence you must speak from your heart, not your head.

Head talk consists of things you have read or heard, yet never experienced. These items leave room for doubt and doubt cannot be hidden. Fake it till you make it only fools those who want to be fooled. The rest are left with uneasy feelings.

Heart talk comes from the depths of experience. It’s like the hot stove, once you have touched it you can talk about that experience with conviction. Until then you are only guessing and guessing weakens any message.

Speaking from the depths of experience gives you two distinct advantages. One, it allows you to relax. You can free-wheel with your audience knowing that you know your subject well. And the second advantage, whatever you say is said with truthful conviction.

Audiences know when you are being real and when you are not. If you want to connect with more people and gain their respect, learn to speak from the depths of experience. That way you can relax and throw away your notes.

A common error made by many speakers is feeling that they have nothing that important or worthy to say. Yet, the most powerful bits you can ever use come from the most common events. How many times have you watched Seinfeld? The magic of that awesome television series was in the actors’ ability to deal with the most common aspects of life.

Think back to the events you have already lived through. Look for the silly things you have done, the fears you once had and the most shocking moments you can remember. Assuming you have been on planet earth for several years, you have already bumped into tons of material. Look backwards, dig deeply and keep it simple. This formula was worth millions for Seinfeld. It worked for him so it can surely work for you.

The third vital aspect of Platform Presence is being real. This can be scary at first, but it is so much easier than trying to be someone you aren’t. Real is something audiences look for and respect. On the other hand, the instant an audience feels that you have stepped over the line toward phony they will tune you out.

To truly connect with your audience and keep them with you, you have got to open real and stay that way. When that is what you have done, more people will remember you and be thankful for what you have said, even when they don’t completely agree with everything you have said.

Remember that old saying, “Honesty is the best policy.” If you are going to speak and care about your results, never be afraid to be open, honest, caring, and real. That is the very best you can ever be.

Author's Bio: 

Dick Warn is a speaker, author, and coach. His Miracle Minute series is on the air in Southern California and Florida, and can be heard or read by going to www.TheMiracleMinute.com. His third book "Mystical Mentor" is helping people leave more of their troubles behind. You can read the first three chapters by going to www.mysticalmentor.com