Most business professionals are presenters in one form or another, whether it be at a conference or in the boardroom. Exceptional delivery really helps the audience remember your message. Sadly, too many presentations fail through two crucial stages being skipped: 'practice' and 'rehearsal'.
So what's the difference between a 'practice' and a 'rehearsal'? Although these two words have similar meanings in the dictionary, at Active Presence we find it useful to use them as labels for specific activities - both of which are part of the presentation creation process.
Practising is all about getting comfortable with your material. Here you can perform
segments of your presentation individually, whether it be your opening 30 seconds or your closing call to action. Repeat as many times as you like, until you're happy with your performance.
The key point is that this is a development process that enables you to perfect your script and supporting material. You have the opportunity to refine different parts of your performance, prior to assembling a complete performance.
At Active Presence we use the word 'rehearsal' to refer to complete performances, in which the only missing element is the audience. In other words, the entire presentation should be run from start to finish, using all appropriate technology and props, as if you were standing in front of a live audience. If you fluff your lines, or the projector fails - keep going - there's no retake here. Whatever happens during rehearsal may well happen in front of a live audience. Deal with it.
It is useful to video record your rehearsals, so you get a feel of what your audience sees and hears.