What better way to start off this post than with a selfie recording in my office?
Yes, this is me (Zac Keeney) the author of “A Keen Mind” blog at work in my office while writing this post. But I’m not here to talk about taking a picture of myself, I’m talking about using audio to record and prepare for your next BIG ASK.
I label a BIG ASK the next big thing you’re looking to do. Maybe you’re looking to: get a raise, pitch a piece of business, ask for a promotion, or speak at a conference. Most of the time, you’re going to need some help to accomplish any of these events.
The key to any BIG ASK is preparation. Not only in your mind, but with what comes out of your mouth. Maybe more importantly than what comes out of your mouth.
I’ve found one of the very best ways to do this is record yourself. If you’re thinking this is going to take some investment into technology or something grand I hate to disappoint you. The device you need is likely less than three feet from you or may even be in your hand as you read this post.
It’s your smartphone; 99% of them have a record feature. Use it.
I was recently working on a presentation for a speaking engagement and my wife came downstairs into the office only to walk in on me giving my presentation. I guess it looks kind of weird seeing someone talking into their phone, but it was worth it.
Step 1 – Recording. I recommend recording a couple different times. If you’re just starting out you won’t hit your flow right away and that’s the point. Just record it.
Step 2 – Listen for the pain. This is the fun step if you’re prepared for it. I have a great deal of fun picking apart the errors or weak moments of storytelling in my audio. The key here is to think you’re critiquing someone else. It’s human nature to want to provide feedback. Don’t believe me? Just look at shows like American Idol. We love to critique and provide our point of view.
Step 3 – Rinse and Repeat. Record, listen, critique and practice again, but get better. Your comfort level and confidence in performing the BIG ASK will come off second nature. You’ll be in a state of flow after a few times and you should be really having fun with it.
ACTION ITEM: The next BIG ASK you have coming try recording yourself in advance. I promise you’ll be more prepared and success will follow.