Public-speaking & Story-telling

On December 23, 2019, I had an online coaching session with Thene M. Sheehy from Green Hat Coaching & Consulting. Through the Zoom Meeting, the course started at 10:00 am and ended at 12:50pm without a break. The session aimed to help me improve self-confidence for public speaking, and learn ways to structure the stories and remember the ideas to share during speeches.

The session kicked off with the assessment of my superpowers. As a young leader, I could identify myself with the following superpowers: harmonization, experimentation, peacemaking, problem-solving, motivation, decisiveness, critical-thinking and recalibration. The coach also helped me discover some other superpowers I aspire to with a remaining task to nurture and develop them. Those aspirational superpowers are gap detection, ingenuity, pattern mapping, negotiation, system thinking, grit, visionary or creative thinking.

To help me know who I am, the coach took me through Myers-Briggs where we looked at 16 personalities. This section shaped my understanding of what makes act how. As an introvert, I reflected on my traits as an advocate, campaigner and made a commitment to take the test of personality types to discover where to focus and areas for improvement in my undying lust for knowledge.

After this session, we embarked on essential elements of the story. We discussed five vital elements including character, setting, plot, conflict and call for action. We then looked at the golden circle with important cards to construct the story. A powerful story for change should start with why and discuss how, then conclude with what you want the audience to do. That story for change should explain the past, clarify the future, create connections, change opinions, delight the audience and call for action. The session ended with the discussion on seven ways of structuring the presentation in a flow that keeps your audience wanting more. At this point, we discussed new presentation models to go beyond powerpoint presentations. To that end, visme, canva, prezi bono and promo are appreciated as suitably new models of presentations. 

I am very grateful to Thene for providing me with such a highly needed knowledge in the current world business. Through this session, I got my experience expanded, and my skills sharpened. As an advocate for youth and activist in areas of governance and development, I plan to use acquired skills to develop and improve my studies as an immediate result and later use the new knowledge in playing an active role in the development efforts in Rwanda and Africa at large. As a masters’ student, I will use these skills in my class presentations and apply leadership skills in my tasks as the Student representative in the university’s board of directors. Back home, I plan to focus on fostering youth participation in the process of social transformation towards a fair and equal society through governance and social-economic activities. I believe my engagement with youth and policy-makers will enable young men and women to become active and responsible leaders of their lives today and tomorrow.