Speaking is quickly turning into the game of Netflix. It used to be that as a speaker we could rely on our audience to be sort of our prisoners. Whether it was in a meeting, at a conference or at any other occasion, once we had started talking, our audience was pretty much stuck to their chairs and we had privileged access to their attention.
That’s not the case anymore. Since speakers have become just another small screen among all the other screens we’re looking at throughout our day, we’re suddenly competing with Netflix, YouTube et al. A great show on the large streaming platform manages to grab our attention for an extended amount of time. Many speakers currently fail to do so because they still rely on telling their story just as they were used to from offline situations. Yet, on a small screen it’s much harder to hold the attention of a viewer if you fail to get to the point quickly. Or if you don’t engage with your audience. If what you say doesn’t resonate. Many viewers aren’t very patient towards bad shows. They are not going to be patient towards boring presentations.
Add to that all the distractions that come with Mail, Instagram, Google, a good book etc. and it becomes way harder for people to cut through the noise if their story doesn’t nail it.
The bars have been risen a lot to make listening to your story worthwhile. As a speaker, you need to adapt quickly to the new situation in order to get your story heard. Because if you don’t, your audience will just switch their attention to something more engaging.
(PS: If you want to level up quickly, you might want to consider a coaching).