Getting Over Yourself

June 26, 2010

What to do if you realize you’ve given the wrong information to an audience?

Filed under: Tips — Barbara Rocha @ 11:47 am
Tags: , , , ,

Wait until you’re rational before saying anything. Give yourself a moment to discover the appropriate moment and method of handling it.

Sometimes you realize your mistake very quickly because you see an odd expression on people’s faces. At that moment, you can say something like, “Did I say there were no problems with the trial run?” If you’re sure you did, you can then say, “Wow, my wishful thinking must have kicked in.” Otherwise, wait a moment for confirmation of what you said before correcting it.

If it’s much later in the presentation that you realize your mistake, wait until you’ve finished the current thought. Pause, and then say, “It just occurred to me, that I may have misspoken earlier. I’m thinking I said ______, when what I should have said was ___________.”

If no one is likely to have noticed it, you might instead say, “Earlier I was telling you about ___________. And I’d just like to repeat that to make sure I was clear.” And you could give a reason why it’s important to be clear on this point.

As always, the key is not feeling guilty or inept. Keep your good thinking patterns in place and you can correct it without losing the audience in any way.

“One of the secrets of life is to make stepping stones out of stumbling blocks.” Jack Penn

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