Digital Distraction And Public Speaking
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Now, you may be wondering whose digital distraction I’m referring to, that of your audience or your own. The subject of digital distraction and public speakers is something you will definitely be dealing with when you speak from the stage to promote your information marketing business.
Every person in your audience has a cell phone and often a tablet as well. All those devices are generally turned on during your presentation, and that means they are going to create interruptions from time to time. So, what do you do about it?
First of all, I like to pull out my cell phone in front of the audience in the first session, if there will be several, and address the situation right up front. I say something like, “I’m turning off my cell phone right now and I’d like to invite you to do the same. If you prefer to go silent or vibrate instead, that’s your personal business, but I’m going to be giving you all my full attention for the next hour and I’d look forward to receiving yours.”
Dealing with the potential interference this way gives everyone an opportunity to 1) be reminded, 2) do the right thing, and 3) suffer embarrassment if their phones or tablets interrupt. Nobody likes to be embarrassed in public, and they WILL be embarrassed because there was such a public reminder.
Some speakers comment if a digital signal interrupts later in the presentation, but I figure that the issue has been covered and most people are going to jump up and leave (good riddance) or sheepishly turn off the offending device at last.