When clients tell me they want to be like Anthony Robbins or Zig Ziglar, my first question is why? Yes, I understand that they may want to be as famous or as rich or as talented, but why would they want to imitate either one of them?

While your audience would probably love to see Robbins or Ziglar in person, they came to hear you. What I love about dynamic public speakers is that part of their greatness lies in their own individuality. On stage, Tony Robbins is nothing like Zig Ziglar. Whereas Robbins’ personality is motivating and invigorating because of his high energy level, Zig Ziglar is much more relaxed. A master storyteller, the latter captivates you with his Southern drawl and marvelous manner in which he describes true life events.

No, these two men are not alike and, while I don’t know this as a fact, I doubt either one would want to be the other. What sells each man is his individuality and that is what you need to sell about yourself.

Trying to be someone other than yourself is acting which is performing. Being yourself on stage is not the same thing. This is also why I do not recommend memorizing your speech or presentation because when that happens, you are no longer communicating with your audience. The result is often a rote delivery that sounds staged in which you are merely spitting out a pile of words at your audience.

The best public speakers are themselves; and, they talk to you just as if they were having a conversation. The only way that can happen is for you to be present in your heart as well as in your head. You need to know your material, but you must be able to deliver it just as if you were talking to someone in conversation.

In days of old, radio announcers often took on a different persona and most definitely a different voice when on air. Remember the Ted Knight character on The Mary Tyler Moore Show? He would speak in a very deep, unnatural pitch when giving the news. Off air, his pitch would rise when he resorted to his habitual voice.

When Anthony Robbins or Zig Ziglar are off stage, they sound exactly the same as they do on stage. That is what makes for success today in public speaking.

If you can understand this concept, your delivery on stage or at the front of the boardroom table will be that much easier. Allow your own personality to shine through because being yourself in public speaking is what sells.

Author's Bio: 

The Voice Lady Nancy Daniels offers private, corporate and group workshops in voice and presentation skills as well as Voicing It!, the only video training program on voice improvement. To see how voice training can improve your presentation skills, visit Voice Dynamic.

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