The second day started off with a bit of a regroup and a reminder about Second Life. Now this is something I intend to try for this project but I am a bit skeptical about it. I like The Sims so I can see the enjoyment aspect and I can also see the business benefits of people all over the globe able to meet in various situations such as the conference rooms. But I think there is a lot of scope for it to go wrong that could let down the whole idea if it’s not done well. I’ll see when I’ve had a go!
The day then really got started with a fun workshop that got us all talking from our diaphragms, throwing claps around a room and breathing from our toes!! It was all aimed at small exercises that help to prepare us for presentations but actually I think will prove to be very useful in everyday life.
Throwing claps around the room helped us to focus, to learn to use the whole room and use energy to direct our message. We held simple conversations to someone who was having another conversation to enable us to block out other distractions and get our message across. We did relaxation techniques to focus the mind, relax and calm nerves. We practiced breathing and talking from our diaphragms, although I’m not sure I actually managed to do that!
We put all this into practice by doing a 2 minute presentation on something that really excited us. I bet you can’t guess what my topic was….
…no not Kimi Raikkonen but Take That reforming! haha! I got really into it at one point doing the ‘talk to the hand cos the face ain’t listening’ hand gesture about Gary Barlow and Take That as a four piece! (*oh dear*). Unfortunately for me we were filmed so we could watch it back and see exactly what we were doing, both right and wrong! That was an experience that takes a bit of getting used to…I don’t really even look in a mirror on a morning let alone watch myself talk for a couple of minutes! Anyway it proved really interesting and invaluable as it meant we could get feedback from the group and see exactly what they saw, rather than thinking how it went from my perspective.
After getting the feedback it was then time to do another 2 minute presentation, this time on a work related subject. I tried to take on board what we had done the day before and introduce myself and my job in an exciting (but truthful!) way. Watching it back I don’t half talk quickly when I’m trying to portray enthusiasm! I think that’s something I do naturally when excited as I get a lot of blank looks off some of my work colleagues when I’m rambling on about minis or Kimi or Take That, so I need to take a few breaths and slow down.
Presenting wasn’t as bad as I was expecting, mainly because we’d spent the two days talking in front of each other, and it seemed almost natural by this point. Perhaps for the future to feel comfortable stood in front of people, all it will take is practise practise practise!
The most surprising thing I learnt from day 1 was that in interviews you are not there to answer questions but to get your point across. From day 2 I think it was that you don’t need to be serious in presentations as enthusiasm does not mean that you are unprofessional.
Personally I found the second day the most useful. I can already see how I can use the things we were taught in the workshop and the feedback gained from the experts. Indeed I’ve already used the relaxation technique when being shouted at by a very rude man!