That’s right…never apologize to the audience unless that is part of your opening joke or pertinent to you speech.
Whether you are late coming onto the stage, lost some important notes, the Powerpoint isn’t working, other technical difficulties, you are sick and coughing, or anything else, never apologize…just do your job.
The problem with apologies is that the audience perceives them as excuses or lack of preparation, and a general lack of professionalism.
If you begin your speech with “Sorry, I’m late. My plane was delayed” the audience really doesn’t care. All they want you to do is get on with the presentation. Anything else is a distraction that you can’t afford. If you really feel the need to explain and it relates somehow to your presentation, then turn it into a joke or example. For instance, “Have you ever flown XYZ Airlines? Since we are here to talk about customer service, let me give you an example from this morning”.
Apologies = Excuses in the audience’s minds, and they are not there to hear excuses. Just do your job.
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