The Secrets of

12/05/2011 01:15

"Watchability." Both my dictionary with spell checker and an online dictionary let me know that "watchability" is not a real word. However, I will continue to use it because, i believe, the ability to be watchable may be the single most important trait a speaker might have.

This summer, I attended the annual convention of your National Speakers Association. I believed that the kickoff speaker was amazing. However, in the event you break down his style in purely technical terms, he was awful. He kept moving around the stage, he stepped out from the light and in to the audience, he checked his watch while speaking, etc. Despite that, he had watchability. Something about his delivery and elegance kept me grossly engaged. Others will need to have thought so as well - you aren't getting to open a national speakers convention if people think you're not good.

So what is watchability? It is, to become a bit redundant, the sign of being watchable. People enjoy watching and following you speak. The amazing thing is that if you will be watchable, then despite the fact that mess up or if your site content or delivery isn't nearly snuff, the audience will enjoy it.

The ultimate goal, needless to say, is to have great content and delivery while being amazingly watchable. The challenge is that often while content and delivery are easily viewable traits, watchability is abstract. It's simple to watch a speaker and critique that they move, or that they use their facials. You'll be able to listen and critique stutters, inflection, pace, and vocal variety. The need for their content is very easy to immediately judge.

Watchability, however, is much like charisma. You can't define a predetermined criteria, but you understand it when you see it.

I have however, observed quite a few that all eminently watchable speakers do:


Mad Money Sunset Strip Out to Sea Roommates Nasty Married Men and Single Women Happy Go Lucky Monkeybone HIDING OUT Maudes Problem Class The Man Who Loved Women John Leguizamo Freak Pawnee Zoo HD Stay Tuned Todd the Metal God Brain Donors Frankenweenie Dennis the Menace Strikes Again Amos Andy Income Tax American Breakdown Pilot Where the Boys Are Alex and Mom Bring It On Again The Infidel The Living Wake Gayle and the Plumber Lage Raho Munna English subtitled Flight into Terror Dead Men Dont Wear Plaid Happy Holidays Tamara Drewe The Affairs of Cappy Ricks Fluff Big Trouble Sex and the Single Girl To a Tee Good Times With Weapons Monday Pee Wee Herman Show Broadway Aristo Cat Feed Kitty Woman On Top Pilot HD What Love Is SoulMaid That Uncertain Feeling Kitty Cleans Up Slap Shot 3 Junior League Chick Magnet They are themselves. These speakers speak through the heart, and speak inside a style that is true privately. They don't use other's words, and they avoid using unnatural body movements which a coach taught them. You'll get the impression that if the both of you were hanging out for dinner, they would say the same in the same way. They are comfortable. Watchable speakers look right at home on stage. This arises from two things: 1) these are experienced and be aware of the material inside and out, and 2) they are not afraid of failure. As they definitely want to communicate their message and please they audience, it isn't wrapped up in all that. They can be content to just hop on stage and do their best. If the audience wants it great; if not, it's not the end of the world. They are experiencing fun. You have probably seen a speaker (also a "professional") who looks like they cannot want to be on stage. Watchable speakers have fun. Even if their topic is serious, they clearly become if they want to be on that stage. They view it as an honor and also a privilege. Whether it is due to fear, arrogance, burn-out, or some mysterious other factor, every time a speaker would rather be in other places, an audience can feel it.

Practice implementing these three ideas: be genuine, get comfortable, and enjoy yourself. You can instantly and drastically raise the value of your speech without changing 1 word if you do this. You'll, in word, become "watchable."