No Image Available

Claire Savage


Editor, news

Read more from Claire Savage

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

Trainer’s Diary: Stage Fright


Byron Kalies
Even the most seasoned trainers, and performers, admit to feeling that flutter in their stomach when it comes to facing their audience. But how do you cope? Byron Kalies tries to calm his nervous mind.

I was watching a television programme the other evening about opera singers. One of the top, renowned, singers admitted to having nerves. She said that she often had nights when she wished she would get run over on the way to the theatre to avoid performing that night.

I guess we’ve always been there. Whether we’d like to admit it or not is another matter, but I’ve certainly felt like that. Interestingly, for me, this doesn’t seem to get any better with age or experience. I learn to control it better and reassure myself that it will be OK as I’ve done this a hundred times before but I still get that feeling in the pit of my stomach wondering why I ever did this job in the first place.

Are there any tips or techniques that people could pass on? For me the main one is talking about it with a colleague. Unfortunately business being business and economics being economics the ‘luxury’ of co-delivering seems to be getting less and less - which is a shame really. I have found co-delivering far more productive, less stressful, developmental and, most importantly, better for the attendees.

There are times when only two will do. If it’s a long event, an intense event, an event where you need to build up a co-presenter’s experience, but try to explain that to someone holding the budget. There seems to be less and less understanding these days. (I do know how I sound) . It’s the same problem facing hospitals, schools as well I know.

There are lots of things to blame. One major cause of blame would be Anthony Robins and his like. You don’t see him co-presenting – as an admin colleague pointed out recently. This is true although I understand there is a small army that supports him and he gets a daily rate approximately equivalent to one calendar year’s salary for me. But am I bitter? You know I am. I wonder if he ever wishes he’d get run over on his way to the theatre? I hope so. (Get worried I mean, not get run over).

2 Responses

  1. stage fright – I know what you mean
    I much prefer to co-work on a training project. 2 minds definitely create more structure, more ideas and more confidence. It’s good to feel some of the weight off of your own shoulders. Most times your audience do want you to do well and I bear that in mind, although there are those who bring big egos and agendas into the room as well.

  2. Nerves or panic ?
    To me, and perhaps to most actors(?) stage fright is that moment of blind panic when you’ve totally forgotten what you were going to say, what had just happened and you don’t know where to go next. A second seems to last an hour, with a deathly silence and all eyes are on you.

    When I’ve been there, I’ve learned to admit that my mind has gone a blank and ask someone to remind me what I was saying last. Re-engaging the thread for me comes from that.

No Image Available
Claire Savage

Editor, news

Read more from Claire Savage

Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.

Thank you!