Give Your Best Speech or Pitch – Do Better than Rehearse!

"Rehearse Recovery Methods," says Tom Marcoux, Pitch Coach and Spoken Word Strategist
“Rehearse Recovery Methods,” says Tom Marcoux, Pitch Coach and Spoken Word Strategist

“It’s the most important speech of my life so far,” my client Theresa said. “I know I’ve got to rehearse,” she continued.

“You need more than simple rehearsal. You need what I call Double Power,” I replied.

Double Power so You Shine as You Speak:

  • Rehearse Recovery Methods
  • Rehearse with a skilled Coach

 

  1. Rehearse Recovery Methods

In some of my current writing, I use the structure of “Lie, Countermeasure, Secret” to briefly get across vital information.

For example:

Lie: Just rehearsing the lines of a speech over and over will give you confidence.

Countermeasure: Rehearse Recovery Methods

Secret: Your nervousness quiets down and your confidence goes up when you’re certain that you’re ready to adapt to mistakes and problems during a speech.

What’s the big fear that a speaker has? Having one’s mind go blank!

Here are Three Recovery Methods:

  • Practice Phrases to Buy You Time

For example, at IBM while I was giving a speech, I said, “I’ll need to pause for a moment. My brain needs more RAM.” The tech people in the audience really enjoyed laughing at that comment.

  • Say, “At this moment, I want to emphasize—”

If you lose your place, you can go back to the topic of your speech, and say, “At this moment, I want to emphasize—” This phrase works in two ways: 1) If you’re repeating yourself, this is no problem and 2) If you’re saying a detail for the first time, the phrase also works.

  • Take a drink of water

Taking a drink of water is a classic way to give yourself some time to organize your thoughts.

 

2. Rehearse with a skilled Coach

A skilled Coach will hear what is authentic in you and point it out. My training as a professional speaker (over 15 years, a professional member of the National Speakers Association) and as a trained actor/feature film director/screenwriter, makes me alert to when a speaker is “in the zone.” That’s when you shine at your best.

Here’s the secret about rehearsing with a skilled Pitch/Speech Coach:

The Coach hears your best phrases and points them out to you. Then your speech is tailored to your uniqueness and authenticity. You then have an edge in giving the pitch or speech.

Warmly,

Tom

* See my new book Year of Awesome! How You Can Use 12 Success Principles including 10 Seconds to Wealth  (CLICK HERE to look inside the book)

Tom Marcoux
CEO (leading teams in United Kingdom, India and USA)

Speaker-author of 40 books (with free chapters on Amazon.com )
Executive Coach
Spoken Word Strategist
Author of Time Management Secrets the Rich Won’t Tell You (See more when you CLICK HERE )
1.8 min. video (on YouTube): Tom Marcoux pulls back the curtain about how his directing a feature film that went to Cannes Film market helps with “Building Your Brand”:
Author of Connect: High Trust Communication for Your Success in Business and Life (See more when you CLICK HERE )
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Be At Your Best: Pitch Well and Answer Tough Questions!

Tom Marcoux address Stanford University PhDs and PhD-candidates. After his speech, Tom answered a question about "how to deal with tough questions."
Tom Marcoux address Stanford University PhDs and PhD-candidates. After his speech, Tom answered a question about “how to deal with tough questions.”

“How did the top filmmakers fail to engage the Silicon Valley investors, Tom?” my friend Jill asked.

“Many of them crashed and burned when they reacted to questions,” I replied, noting what I observed at a private investors’ meeting in Palo Alto, California.

Here I’m going to share briefly some vital ways to respond (not react) to tough questions.

I have three steps: a) Catch the question, b) Answer the question and c) Shine light on the Diamond.

1. Catch the Question

As I work with clients, I’ve seen many of them recoil and step backwards when they’re asked a tough question. Wrong move. Stepping backwards shows that you’re unsure of the value you bring.

Instead, over the years, I have conditioned myself to step two steps forward when someone asks a question.

I invite to step toward the person and say something like this (to “catch the question”):

  • Susan, I’m glad you brought that up. I was going to address that in the next segment. Let’s do this now.
  • George, I can see that’s important to you.

When you answer a question in that above manner, you show that you are not uneasy about the question. You also give yourself time to think. I call it “thinkspace.”

2. Answer the Question and Shine Light on the Diamond

When you answer a question, you do NOT have to accept the premise.

Picture this:

George (potential investor) asks, with an edge: “Anita, how do you have the gall to ask us for money when your first company went belly up?”

Anita replies: “George, I can see that means a lot to you. I learned a lot from the experience with the previous company. Recently, while working as vice president of XYZ Company, I’ve learned of a market segment that no one was aware of three years ago. I have the focus and the data to back up that this is a prime opportunity for investors like you to take advantage of some new data and new technology.”

The above answer covers something that is implied by George’s tough question: The possibility that Anita is incompetent.

Anita does not reply in any way in which she could hurt her own cause. She will NOT provide some self-conscious, self-denigrating comment that could be recorded as a terrible soundbite that issued from her own mouth.

Instead, she expresses “the Diamond” – also known as talking points – that she is competent (working as vice president at XYZ Company) and that she sees new opportunities (backed up by new data and new technology).

The truth is: With great coaching and proper rehearsal, you can prepare for the 10 Worst Questions You Don’t Want to Answer.

When you do that, you’ll be so prepared, that you will know, even in your subconscious mind, that you have real value to convey to potential investors.

That’s when you’re strong and ready … and you will succeed.

Warmly,

Tom

* See my new book Year of Awesome! How You Can Use 12 Success Principles including 10 Seconds to Wealth  (CLICK HERE to look inside the book)

Tom Marcoux
CEO (leading teams in United Kingdom, India and USA)

Speaker-author of 40 books (with free chapters on Amazon.com )
Executive Coach – Pitch Coach
Spoken Word Strategist
 
Author of Time Management Secrets the Rich Won’t Tell You (See more when you CLICK HERE )
 
1.8 min. video (on YouTube): Tom Marcoux pulls back the curtain about how his directing a feature film that went to Cannes Film market helps with “Building Your Brand”:
 
Author of Connect: High Trust Communication for Your Success in Business and Life (See more when you CLICK HERE )

How Your Mindset Helps You Connect with People – On the Subconscious Level

Secret so You Pitch Well in Tom Marcoux 's book "Darkest Secrets of Making a Pitch for Film and Television"
Secrets so You Pitch Well in Tom Marcoux ‘s book “Darkest Secrets of Making a Pitch for Film and Television”

Can your mindset create good results instantly?

On this topic, I turned to my friend and colleague, David Barron, with nearly 20 years of experience in doing clinical hypnotherapy.

Here at PitchPowerFest.com, we’re currently expecting that David Barron will be joining us in our proposed upcoming events in Silicon Valley, CA and a later event on the East Coast (potential locations in New York or the Walt Disney World Resort).

I’ve invited David to share two vital elements of truly connecting with the investors during your presentation.

  1. Start off by assuming that you have rapport.

You start off that you like these people and assume that they like you.

Just pretend that everyone there is your best friend and that you’re their best friend. And you demonstrate that feeling as you do your presentation.

For example, look them in the eyes. When they’re talking, give them your full attention, showing that they are important.

  1. Start with assumption that the presentation is about THEM. It is not about you or your product/project.

You demonstrate that this is true by starting with the focus on what is important about your project to them. You get away from the general idea of “this is why my project is great.” Instead, you have on a filter that sees the world from their values.

David Barron, clinical hypnotherapist, helping people for nearly 20 years.
David Barron, clinical hypnotherapist, helping people for nearly 20 years.

David Barron emphasizes: “Make sure that you engage in a conversation, not just a presentation.”

A powerful practice, indeed!

Warmly,

Tom

* See my new book Year of Awesome! How You Can Use 12 Success Principles including 10 Seconds to Wealth  (CLICK HERE to look inside the book)

Tom Marcoux
CEO (leading teams in United Kingdom, India and USA)

Speaker-author of 40 books (with free chapters on Amazon.com )
Executive Coach
Spoken Word Strategist
Author of Time Management Secrets the Rich Won’t Tell You (See more when you CLICK HERE )
1.8 min. video (on YouTube): Tom Marcoux pulls back the curtain about how his directing a feature film that went to Cannes Film market helps with “Building Your Brand”:
Author of Connect: High Trust Communication for Your Success in Business and Life (See more when you CLICK HERE )

PitchPowerFest.com – Get the Edge – Connect with the Subconscious Mind

Tom Marcoux address Stanford University PhDs and PhD-candidates on his topic "Soar with Confidence"
Tom Marcoux address Stanford University PhDs and PhD-candidates on his topic “Soar with Confidence”

Frank, a venture capitalist, said, “You’re right, Tom. That’s the missing part of pitching.”

I smiled and elaborated on my point, “It’s all about trust. And at this secret pitching event with Silicon Valley investors, I was stunned at the mistakes the people pitching were making. I took notes. They just talked ‘at’ the investors. They didn’t build trust; they didn’t have a dialogue.”

“They just want to talk. They don’t want to have a dialogue,” Frank concluded.

I took my notes and wrote the book, Darkest Secrets of Making a Pitch for Film and Television: How You Can Get a Studio Executive, Producer, Name Actor or Private Investor to Say “Yes” to Your Project (look inside this book when you CLICK HERE).

With my clients, I have them prepare for 10 Worst Questions You Don’t Want to Answer.

Here’s the point (connected to Your Subconscious Mind):

You need to prepare so well that you KNOW you can adapt to anything during your pitch.

You do best when you get coaching.

I know this to be a fact. Why? Every Olympic Athlete has a coach. Every one of them! I know this because I am the Executive Coach to a sports psychologist who has coached over 100 Olympians – five of them are Gold Medalists.

Here’s the Insight about Connecting to Investors’ Subconscious Mind:

They’re testing you. Every question. Every look at your body language. The sound of your voice. Your word choice. It all Builds Trust or it breaks trust.

Working with my clients, I ask: “Are you building trust or are you breaking trust?”

I launched PitchPowerFest.com because I’m already coaching private clients to make their vision come true.

Now it’s time to help even more people make things happen.

Right now, I’ll share with you three important methods.

  1. “Keep Score and Achieve More.”

Keep a log of how many times you rehearse your pitch (including having sessions of practice for Tough Questions).

  1. Rehearse to Engage Your Subconscious Mind

In my recent speech at Stanford University, as I addressed Stanford PhDs and PhD-candidates, I emphasized that it’s best to rehearse early in the day (even just 3 minutes before you brush your teeth), so your subconscious mind works on your pitch all day.

  1. “Make Victory Blossom from the Ashes of Disappointment”

So you made a pitch and it failed. How do you know? Do you have a check in your hand?

Take the energy of sadness or even irritation, and Use It. Get coaching. Change your approach. Make something happen. Call more prospects and more people who could give your referrals.

This phrase “Make Victory Blossom from the Ashes of Disappointment” arose in my mind some time ago. It has been a tool for me to take more and better action.

My friend, I invite you to pick your “mantra” or “get in action” phrase to empower your next, effective action.

Warmly,
Tom

* See my new book Year of Awesome! How You Can Use 12 Success Principles including 10 Seconds to Wealth  (CLICK HERE to look inside the book)

Tom Marcoux
CEO (leading teams in United Kingdom, India and USA)

Speaker-author of 40 books (with free chapters on Amazon.com )
Executive Coach
Spoken Word Strategist
Author of Time Management Secrets the Rich Won’t Tell You (See more when you CLICK HERE )
1.8 min. video (on YouTube): Tom Marcoux pulls back the curtain about how his directing a feature film that went to Cannes Film market helps with “Building Your Brand”:
Author of Connect: High Trust Communication for Your Success in Business and Life (See more when you CLICK HERE )