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GHC15 Presenting Yourself with Credibility

Presented by: Christina Tan

When I normally think of presenting myself with credibility, I think of how others think of me. I’m in the first year of my life in “the real world” and have been thrown into situations with clients that would make others quiver at the thought. Even with all of my experiences, I worry that being a junior member of the team works against me when presenting my thoughts and ideas.

I approached this session with hopes that Christina Tan would make suggestions on how I can be more impactful when explaining my thoughts and ideas to clients, my colleagues and others.

Christina began by sharing a story about a woman who was introduced to give a speech and how she felt as though she was unworthy of the introduction that was given for her.

I wondered how much of the 350 (full house) audience felt that way. Surely, there would be a few of us who have done this and even more of us who had felt the same way. Christina mentioned that the lady went on to give a speech that right off the bat was less credible because she (the lady) had already expressed her unworthiness.

We started off the session by writing down 3-5 sentences on what is one thing in your community that needs to change. We then found a partner and read our sentence aloud. We then found a different partner who recorded us giving our same speech. Christina read an example aloud to us. The same example-3 different times. Once as a struggling speaker, the next as a rushed speaker, finally as a poised, credible speaker. After each speech Christina showed us annotations of each speaker and we discussed what was wrong with the speakers style of delivery and how that impacted their credibility.

I never thought to incorporate where to slow down when presenting ideas. Normally my ideas are expressed as they come to me; on the fly. I realized when I’ve written my thoughts down I become unsure of them. I use qualifiers. Qualifiers like I think, I feel alongside others.

Christina noted we’d be focusing on three things: voice, body language and body techniques. She reiterated things like projecting your voice and maintaining a consistent volume throughout the speech. Christina mentioned how body techniques such as maintaining a relaxed stance throughout your speech can aide in adding credibility to one as they present their ideas.

We also had a table exercise in which we were given different roles as we discussed a topic. I grabbed the piece of paper that served as the topic advisor. Luckily, our table was lively. The only downfall we had is the use of quantifiers. Why do we do this to ourselves I wondered. Why would I say something like I think or I feel when I say the things I thought or felt anyways.

Christina is a naturally talented speaker who conveyed thoughts and ideas well. When we are consciously aware to avoid the use of quantifiers in our speaking skills, maintain eye contact, be aware of our voice speed and maintain a relaxed body posture we are in a better position to have and be credible speakers.

Christia is the co founder of Extempra