Why will a “better done than perfect” attitude make your presentations closer to perfect?
“Better done than perfect,” said Erich Decat, a client of mine who is a political analyst for XP Investmentos. He was in the middle of telling me about how he conducted a conversation with another journalist in front of a thousand people at the EXPERT 2019 event and how he manages his stage performance in such situations.
"What do you exactly mean?” I asked.
So he explained that when he is on stage, making a small mistake can trip him up and lead to further slips if he dwells on the initial mistake. Therefore, wanting to be perfect on stage can lead to ending up not doing a good job.
This is absolutely correct when it comes to speaking in public.
Because confidence, or the lack of it, can make or break how well you deliver your presenation. We will all make a mistake or two now and again. It’s simply inevitable. And if we cannot let go of the slip mentally while on stage, if we cannot stay in the moment and focus on what we have to do next, then we are setting ourselves up for further mistakes because our mind is focused on the negative and because it is not fully focused on what we need to do next.
Practicing delivering a presentation, however, if we have the time, is a completely different story. Aiming for perfection and rehearsing many times is warmly recommended. Top-notch public speakers rehearse at least 200 times their roughly 7 minute speeches while practicing for the World Championship of Public Speaking.
So when rehearsing, aim for perfection. But when delivering on stage, adopt a “better done than perfect” attitude so that you stay as close to perfection as possible despite the ocassionally inevitable slip-up.