Pre-Panel discussion

Get to the speech early yo.

I call it a warm-up. Get there 15–30 minutes early. Talk to the leaders to get the tempo of what they would like to be portrayed. If there are other speaches, try to show up ad see what type of crowd it is. In baseball there is a batter, a guy in the hole and a guy in the dugout waiting to hit. Be the guy in the hole is on the playing field getting a sense of the tempo of the game. Is it windy? Is the crowd noisy? Are the light dim/bright? You wont know of these variables unless you watch the live action for yourself. So show up and hear what the intro person is talking about and see if you can weave what he said in your speech to make it more relevant. See how the crowd responds to humor and get a gauge on what jokes may or may not land correctly.

Talk to some of the attendees, in your early years they probably wont know who you are so its ok to have a quick chat about why they are there and what they are looking to get out of it. Get the voice and throat warmed up. Dont drink cold water because it causes your vocal chords to contract. Work on that smile.

Ive done it, run into a speaking engagement fresh off of the freeway and on stage. Youre cold and flustered. It hits you when youre announced that you have the “rushed” feeling flowing through your veins. Its like getting off of the school bus and running a 100meter dash. Ive done it and pulled my hamstring.

Show up early. Get lubed up. Get in the zone and lets win