It may be a keynote speech at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a presentation to the Board of Directors or a leadership pitch to your team at work. No, it's not necessarily charisma, that mega-wattage which gets politicos like Cory Brooker elected and Warren Buffett able to inspire generations of investors. But it could be, if you become especially adept at the fundamentals of chemistry.
In essence, anyone can create the right chemistry between the speaker and the audience. After all, most of us got through years of schooling because our instructors knew how to transmit their love of their subject matter to us. Fireworks might no have gone off in the classrooms or our brains but information and insight made their way in.
Here are the basics of making yourself a human power grid that lights up the minds and hearts of those you are speaking with:
Know a lot about the audience. The "Today" show lost its connection with the 21st century audience because it never bothered to do a deep dig about who they were. So, it was playing to the 20th century audience and losing eyeballs to "Good Morning America." If you are talking to the Board, discreeting ask around about the unique characteristics of each member and the ethos of the board as an aggregate.
Forget yourself. The minute the speaker, athlete or dancer focuses on the self the connection with the art and the audience is lost. Self consciousness lowers the signal you are transmitting. It gets trapped inside you.
Involve the audience. Before your talk you can invite their input on Facebook and/or Twitter. The same thing afterward. If it's an internal business group, use an intranet. Engaged people are connected people.
Practice. Put together a public speaking posse who will observe how you present yourself, ranging from facial gestures to words. Return the favor.
In the old days, before public speaking became so important, chemistry went by the name of "charm." It could be useful to sit in a bar for a few hours and observe who is attracting interest and who is not.