My experience at the DCW (pt. 2)

Yesterday I reviewed the retreat center where the Dynamic Communicator’s workshop was held.  Today I am sharing my experience there and how I benefitted from it.  The DCW is 4 days of training on how to become an effective communicator.  Going into the workshop I would have told you that I am a gifted teacher, but that I am not a great public speaker.  This manifests in the form of being not particularly good in the pulpit.  In fact, in 13 years of being on church staff I have only filled the pulpit 3 times.  I was hoping to become more polished and effective in this type of format. DCW is a workshop done by Ken Davis productions.  In it they teach a method of presentation signified by the acronym SCORRE. The purpose of the SCORRE method is to teach the speaker to clearly communicate his or her point to the audience.  We have all suffered through a speech in which the speaker did not know what the point was.  And we have all walked away from a speech wondering what the speaker was trying to say.  Here is a guarantee, if you follow the SCORRE method, you will definitely know what your point is.  Further, if you present it properly, your audience will know what your point is.

The classroom sessions are all about the method of speaking.  But the classrooms are only a part of the workshop experience.  The other component is practice and evaluation.  We were placed into small groups (7-9 people) with each group having a leader.  The purpose of the small groups was to practice our newly-learned skills.  We arrived with a prepared speech and wrote and delivered 2 others over the course of the workshop.

In the small groups you are videotaped so you can see yourself.  Also you are critiqued by the members of your group and of your instructor.  For me, this was the most useful part of the workshop.  In this part I was able to work on things like gestures and eye-contact.  These are the parts of public speaking where I particularly needed improvement.  Watching yourself on videotape with your instructor by your side is painful, but it is also very educational.  When he is able to say, “See what you did there?” or, “Wasn’t that boring?”  it goes a lot further than saying, “Be less boring.”

I cannot review anyone else, but my small-group leader was wonderful.  He was honest in his criticism and gentle.  I never felt beat down by criticism, only encouraged.

DCW is a wonderful experience.  If public speaking is ever a part of your life, you would benefit from attending.  I honestly believe that I am a better public speaker now than I was a week ago.  At the very least I  know that I am certainly more confident.