Want To Be A Better Public Speaker?
Take a Lesson from the Navy SEALs

Navy SEALs Photo

It was just reported that members of the U.S. Navy SEAL team involved in the raid on bin Laden’s compound were wearing helmet-mounted digital cameras that recorded the mission. Sounds like a slow news day to me, because why wouldn’t the SEALs have helmet cams on such an important mission? Here’s a better question, though:

Do you record your missions (your speeches)?

You should be doing exactly what the SEALs did, whether you’re well established or just getting started. And you don’t just record them for sake of recording them. Do you know what the military is doing with the footage from this mission right now?

They’re doing what’s called a post-mission analysis. By reviewing this video footage, they can see what went right and wrong during the raid. It helps them “remember what went on in the heat of the moment,” a military source told CNN. It’s what they call a “look and learn.”

Could you benefit from doing a “look and learn” on your presentation footage? Of course you could — we all can. You’ll see things that you would have never noticed while your adrenaline is flowing on stage — maybe that point could be made clearer, maybe that gesture wasn’t big enough, maybe you spent too much time on the left side of the stage — so you can be even better next time.

How do you do this, by the way? Easy.

Option 1: Equip one of your audience members in the front row with a helmet cam so you can see exactly what they see. (not recommended)

Option 2: Set up a Kodak Zi8 or other mini-camera on a tripod in an inconspicuous location.

Now on your flight back home, you can watch yourself (as painful as it is, I know). Make notes about what you really like and what you’d like to improve upon. Between now and your next engagement, rehearse what you want to change the next time you take the stage… And then repeat. Time after time after time.

Thankfully you don’t have to go through the “toughest military training the world” (as the SEALs do) to become one of the world’s best and most successful speakers. But you do have to commit to doing some “little things” that others don’t — like “post-mission analysis” — along the way.

Want more ideas to build a more successful speaking business?


photo credit: Rennett Stowe

2 Comments on “Want To Be A Better Public Speaker?
Take a Lesson from the Navy SEALs

Fred E. Miller
May 15, 2011 at 8:04 am

Great idea!

I record and post the audio of my weekly Posts and it is a great experience that I’ve learned a lot from.

The next step will be taking your advice; taping and reviewing video.

Thanks for the Post!

May 31, 2011 at 6:49 pm

Hope it helps! Let us know if you have any big “ah ha” moments after reviewing your video.

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