Public speaking jitters

Public speakingThe week before Easter, a colleague and I presented at the Wellington SQL Server User Group.  It was a first for each of us, and its fair to say neither of us was jumping with joy at the idea of it.  To ease into it we did a few things which I think helped make it go pretty well, which I’ll run through below:

  1. Most obviously, we did a joint presentation (strength in numbers, or something) 🙂
  2. Our topic wasn’t an in-depth technical one, but rather a “day in the life” type of talk, which made it easier because essentially we were talking about the stuff we do every day, with a  few interesting tidbits thrown in to keep people from nodding off.
  3. We prepared reasonably well before-hand.  But we didn’t have any dry runs before the real deal because I took the week leading up to the presentation off to go on holiday!  Masterful timing I must say.
  4. I mentioned it before, but it’s worth mentioning again; its important to have some lighter/interesting stuff thrown in to keep the content at least slightly more entertaining than watching paint dry.

So yeah, it went well. We had some good feedback, as well as some constructive criticism (made even more constructive by the fact that it was delivered over several beers), so I’m keen to keep the ball rolling and will try to organise some more speaking opportunities soon.

If you’re thinking about making the jump yourself, I can highly recommend it. In the immortal words of Nike’s advertising agency; “Just do it!”

DB Dave

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