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Extension agentasperformer

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  • As Extension agents, we give a lot of presentations….are we properly trained to engage audiences like farmers, gardeners, youth, the general public? Or are we trained to give dry, academic talks to other academics?Show of hands of people who are musicians, or even sing in church choirs. Actors, other performers.
  • Background of music training and activities.NOT a consummate music performer—currently immersed in improving performance skills, so the process of learning is fresh in my head.Today’s session deals with the “art” side of giving oral presentations. It’s a sharing of my experiential learning through this hobby.
  • Intent is not to make everyone adopt one style of presentation, nor to only ever use one presentation style no matter what sort of presentation they are making.This is the classic academic way of looking at teaching styles, after Anthony Grasha. Perhaps what I’m talking about falls under the Entertainer/Delegate, but perhaps not.For a non-academic look at presentation styles:Chris Brogan, Lifehack (blogger), from My Best Presentation TricksChris Brogan is co-author of best-selling book Trust Agents, and runs a social media marketing agency.“You are an Entertainer”Presenting, even to your coworkers and colleagues, is an entertainment experience. If not, why are you standing there with a room full of people looking at you? You could just send an email, mail out a brochure. The presumption is that there’s something inherent in your presence that people can’t get from just browsing the brochure. This is your opportunity to breathe life into material that might not stand so well on its own. It’s a chance to connect with an audience and give them something that they’re never going to receive directly from the product or service or material you’re presenting about. Entertainers are strong on giving their stories life, but they are also strong on reading the room. Entertainers, er, presenters, are there to make sure the audience is playing along at the same pace, and that everyone is connecting with the material. Intent is to explore the “performer” style which is often very useful in engaging extension audiences.We all know Extension agents who are really great presenters, and if we are smart, we observe them carefully and try to copy some of their style elements. These are usually “performers”—people who present with high energy, humor, warmth, and clear content.
  • For a non-academic look at presentation styles:Chris Brogan, Lifehack (blogger), from My Best Presentation TricksChris Brogan is co-author of best-selling book Trust Agents, and runs a social media marketing agency.“You are an Entertainer”Presenting, even to your coworkers and colleagues, is an entertainment experience. If not, why are you standing there with a room full of people looking at you? You could just send an email, mail out a brochure. The presumption is that there’s something inherent in your presence that people can’t get from just browsing the brochure. This is your opportunity to breathe life into material that might not stand so well on its own. It’s a chance to connect with an audience and give them something that they’re never going to receive directly from the product or service or material you’re presenting about. Entertainers are strong on giving their stories life, but they are also strong on reading the room. Entertainers, er, presenters, are there to make sure the audience is playing along at the same pace, and that everyone is connecting with the material. “Intent is to explore the “performer” style which is often very useful in engaging extension audiences.We all know Extension agents who are really great presenters, and if we are smart, we observe them carefully and try to copy some of their style elements. These are usually “performers”—people who present with high energy, humor, warmth, and clear content.
  • Performers have a story, and their mission is to Deliver It!As educators giving presentations, we have a message, and our mission is to Deliver It!
  • Two channels into the brains of your audience. We tend to completely overload the first and under utilize the second. Much of what I’ll talk about is this second channel.
  • Developing performance skills means finding your own voice. How do you do that?Get feedback and learn along the wayAffirmationTough mentorsTake risks
  • Gaining the self-confidence to be on stage. Modifying your own identity to include the conviction that you belong on stage. Few people are born with this; for most, it takes practice and experience, and finding your own voice.
  • Quick breathing exercise, fill your belly, not your chest.Why?Brain needs oxygen to thinkVoice needs air to make sound
  • Project your voice: projection exercise, into fist.“They call it stormy Monday, but Tuesday’s just as bad.”
  • Insist on a good sound systemAdjust the mic!Do a sound check before the showStory of shared mics with band membersMicexercises: adjusting and speaking into regularmic.What to do with a wireless mic clipped to clothing?
  • How many notes are you hitting?Varying voice qualityVarying pace of speakingDemo and exercises
  • Demo: You Are My Sunshine, straight up vs. Ray Charles version demonstrating sound quality, inflection, pace --emphasizing different words, growl, shading loud to soft, octave slur, squeeze note, tempo change, body language, How does this translate into speaking? Exercise: rapid fire, individuals saying this line in a different way, at the microphone.
  • How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Or the NACAA Hall of Fame? Practice. In front of live audiences.
  • Visual cues (external) vs. oral cues (the tape running in your head). Remember the two channels into your brain.Working from notes vs. the slide, on the big screen vs. on the computer screen. What happens when you can’t see them?As much as possible, wean yourself from your visual cues and train your brain in oral cues. Much easier when you give the same presentation repeatedly vs. only once or twice.
  • I am recording this.I have learned that I scowl.
  • Sing something they know—validate their identities.Repeat the chorus—repeating the main message, with details and context in the ‘verses’
  • Be aware of the time, how much you have, how it fits with the rest of your talk. Design a talk so that it can have different end points.
  • Be engaging: single out a few people to engage one-on-one.Use humor: but be careful, nothing inappropriate, nothing to embarrass people. Make jokes about yourself to underscore a point. Demo Call and Response:The Who: My Generation“People try to put us down…..” “talkin ‘bout my generation”“Just because we get around….” “talkin ‘bout my generation”Something more contemporaryHow could you use this in a presentation? --examples from audienceWhat are some other ways to connect with your audience?
  • Lady Gaga, poker face.Never apologize!
  • Remember, your job is to deliver the message: do so from the heart!

Extension agentasperformer Extension agentasperformer Presentation Transcript

  • Extension Agent As Performer
    Lee Young, Penn State Cooperative Extension
  • How a music hobby makes me a betterpresenter
  • Teaching Styles
  • Chris Brogan
    Social media marketing guru
    “My Best Presentation Tricks”
  • Pictures and text: visual channel
    Your voice: audio channel
  • Findyourownvoice
  • You belong on stage
  • Breathe
  • Project yourvoice
    They call it stormy
    Monday
    Tuesday’s just as
    bad
  • The microphone isyourfriend
  • Vanquish the monotone
    How many notes are you hitting?
    How are they paced?
  • Vanquish the monotone
    Demo and exercises: sound quality, inflection, pace
    “The most important piece of information in a soil test report is the pH.”
  • Practice
  • Mindyourcues
  • Record yourselfand learn
  • Tips on material
    Mine the public domain for proven gems
    Want them to listen? Sing something they know
    Repeat the chorus
  • Warm up beforetakingthe stage
    Warm up muscles of your voice
    Gather your energy—performing is exhausting
  • Keep the time and mind the flow
  • Connect with youraudience
    Be engaging
    Use humor
    Call and response
  • Don’treactto mistakes
  • Deliverit from the heart