Never Assume You Hit the Bulls Eye with the Listeners

Posted on July 30, 2012

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I watched an hour of Olympic archery and still have no idea what all the equipment hanging off this bow does.

I just watched the South Korea women’s archery team defeat China for the gold medal in team shooting. It was pretty dramatic. The two teams were separated by two points with six arrows left to go.

For me the best part of the olympics is getting to see sports that are not usually on television like archery, men’s volleyball and badminton all of which I saw in a single three-hour stretch.

What was frustrating is the lack of any explanation by the commentators. I heard repeatedly about clickers (archery), clear shots (badminton) and stuff blocks (volleyball) but still don’t know really know they are. Same with “podium training” which came up a dozen times during some gymnastics coverage I watched.

It’s a good reminder that just because you know all about a topic doesn’t mean your audience does. It may feel redundant but it’s important to set and re-set the premise of your breaks and explain the details that might otherwise leave your audience wondering just what the hell a “flick serve” is and why you would use one.

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