How do you react under pressure? Whether you are put on the spot while selling a product, answering questions, making a presentation or even attending a meeting, speaking your thoughts in unexpected situations can be a skill that you might have to master.

You are not alone.  No one enjoys being put on the spot.  It’s stressful!  When you share your thoughts in a professional manner, you ensure your ideas are heard and you project an image of confidence and trustworthiness.

Thinking on your feet is being prepared when faced with the unexpected and practicing a few skills and tactics might help us relax.  Here are some tips on how to stay poised in these situations.

Relax.  Take deep breaths and allow your brain to think.  This will help create a feeling of calm. 

Listen. Look directly at your audience, observe body language and listen intently to the questions being asked. It’s okay to pause. This reminds you to slow down and collect yourself and your thoughts.

Repeat.  It’s okay to ask for the question to be repeated.  This might give you some time to re-focus and think of your response.

Practice. Whether you are attending a meeting or an interview for a job, being able to clearly talk about your work is a critical skill.  Practice in front of a mirror, with friends or family members.  Then, when you are put on the spot, you can easily relax, listen and respond.

What are some other skills that you have used?

by Carole Marinier, Monthly Blogger for Agilec


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