Speak to Entertain & Inspire

What is the message?  How do you want to engage the audience?  How can you be inspirational in your talk? Thinking about all that — I research speaking and get up on stage as much as possible to share my story.

Recently I spoke for the DetermiNation team at the pre-race Pasta Party in New York City.  I really love to tell my story and am so honored when anyone asks me to speak.  I love to speak in front of crowds and getting nervous is not normally an issue for me.  I am very critical of my speaking and have considered joining Toastmasters but the locations and times are too much to juggle in my crazy lifestyle.   I have video taped my talkss and work to see what I can do better each time.  Check out my YouTube Channel to see me in action!

On LinkedIn one of the groups I follow had a question out there asking people what was the best tip tthat has influenced their public speaking.  Here is a collection (in my opinion) the best answers from that online conversation of Speakers & Trainers.  I recommend being a part of that group to get some really great insight from fellow professionals.  Here is the discussion below:

Nancy (Peck) CookRelax, Be yourself, Don’t write it out and read it – use bullets of the points you want to make in an organized flow to get out your message and end with a strong summary stateent. Take your time and breathe.

Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater. ~ Gail Godwin

 Jonathan LavaroA Guru once taught me, public speaking is likend to serving a dish in a restaurant. You first give them an appetizer. Then you serve them the main meal, and finally, serve them the deserts.

The best advice I ever got was to forget you’re talking to a group. Speak to individuals and imagine having a series of individual conversations. It keeps you casual and relaxed. Otherwise we run the risk of sounding like we’re pontificating. (Ron Cole)

1) Immediately open with a compelling statement (fact, question, challenge); never open with “Good morning, how are you? My name is…”

2) If you are going to take questions leave your closing line or inspiration statement for after the Q&A (you don’t want to end with, “I guess there are no more questions…”) So take the questions and then say, “I’d just like to leave everyone with one more thought…”

3) Similar to #1 above (and a little more controversial), never thank people at the beginning of your talk, thank whoever needs to be thanked at the END of your talk

– Kevin
Blog: http://www.kevinkruse.com/

 Prepare, rehearse, and record yourself if necessary. It’s important to get your timing down. It is good to hear if you say things like “um” a lot.  (Sean Moran)

Know your audience well. This means doing your homework. It’s only when we know our audience well that we are able to connect with them. And being able to do this is half the battle won. (Abdulrazak Yaacob )

Linda HutchinsonThe most important public speaking tip I’ve learned is to create a commitment bigger than my fear. We have all heard that speaking in public is one of the highest sources of fear. To overcome the fear, I create a commitment for the audience/participants bigger than the fear, that is, what is the difference I want to make with them. I do my best to keep my focus on that. Another tip, perhaps the most important, is that I have taken the Avatar Course (www.theavatarcourse.com) where I learned how to “discreate” the fear and anxiety in the moment and create a belief (like the commitment mentioned above). Recently I presented in front of 725 (my largest so far), I used the Avatar tools to have the courage to say Yes, then to quell my anxiety along the way.

Jackie Capers-BrownMake sure the message you deliver is relevant to your audience. What’s the point of someone listening to your speech if the information doesn’t benefit them in some way? And, add as much play as possible in the presentation.

23 comments to date and the conversation is still going on if you want to add your insight and best tips—- or comment here below.  Thanks!

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Nancy Cook 2021

About Nancy

Nancy Peck Cook is a trainer and speaker who has presented in front of large and small audiences for the past 25 years.  Her work as an executive and volunteer trainer for the American Cancer Society during the growth of the signature activity Relay For Life trained professionals to be more confident and successful in their roles. 

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