Trying to figure out how to capture the attention of your safety meeting audiences?

Safety speaker and trainer John Drebinger says you should separate fact from fiction when it comes to so-called attention spans.

What are some of the myths of attention span? Says Drebinger: "One group believes that our attention span is only 10 to 11 minutes because of how we have been conditioned by television. But think of a movie you enjoyed that was over three hours long.

"On the other hand, if you are listening to a presenter who doesn't know how to make something interesting, a 15-minute program can seem like an eternity.

"I believe that an audience's attention span is huge if the material and the way it is presented is worthy of that attention.

"I have learned from other speakers, from books, but most of all from each member of my audience who taught me how to reach them. Each member of your audience has their own needs and that must be taken into account. Even though the material and how it is presented are great, I never want a lot of people in my audience squirming because it has been too long between breaks. I gauge the audience. Their movement and other factors let me know.

"The secret is if you want the attention of your audience you have to pay attention to them."