Six Minutes weekend reviews are back for a third year of bringing you the best public speaking articles from throughout the public speaking blogosphere.
This review features topics including:
- new public speaking books;
- best and worst communicators of 2009;
- how to tell a story;
- moving your audience;
- Toastmasters survey and tips;
- and more!
Resources for Speakers – Public Speaking Books
Check out these recently released public speaking and communications books:
- Presentation Zen Design: Simple Design Principles and Techniques to Enhance Your Presentations by Garr Reynolds
- Speaker's Edge: Secrets and Strategies for Connecting with Any Audience by Darren LaCroix, Patricia Fripp, Craig Valentine, Ed Tate, Mark Brown
- Unfolding the Napkin: The Hands-On Method for Solving Complex Problems with Simple Pictures by Dan Roam
- A Pocket Guide to Public Speaking by Dan O'Hair
- Surviving Dreaded Conversations: How to Talk Through Any Difficult Situation at Work by Donna Flagg
Best and Worst Communicators of 2009
- Bert Decker reveals his annual list of the best and worst communicators of the year.
- Kathy Reiffenstein describes how to tell a story.
Everyone has heard the advice about incorporating stories into a presentation to make your message more “sticky” and easier to understand. So we’re all on board there. But if you’re not a natural story teller [and I count myself firmly in this camp]…you know, the person who always has an anecdote, a colorful example or a yarn to spin…then how exactly do you go about telling a story?
Think back to some of the stories you heard as a child or perhaps read to your own child. A story has a recognizable beginning and end. A story has engaging characters. A story has action. A story has conflict…a problem, dilemma or challenge that needs to be solved. These same elements are what you have to work with in your business stories.
The story you create should underscore and amplify the business message you’re communicating. Including a story that seems to have no relevance to the content and message of your presentation is just confusing for the audience. Make sure you know and the audience knows why you told the story.
- Cynthia Starks reviews upcoming Speechwriter Conferences.
The New Year brings new opportunities for speechwriters to attend conferences and seminars that will help them hone their skills, network with colleagues, meet potential clients and learn how to pursue freelance assignments or corporate speechwriting jobs.
Since I can’t attend all the excellent events out there (although I’d like to), I’m basing my decision on the answer to one question: Which conference will best help me build my freelance speechwriting business?
- Nick Morgan gives 6 tips for using teleprompters.
- Teleprompters make weak presenters better — bringing them up to average.
- You’re still reading text, though, and that’s not the best way to give a speech.
- If you need to be very precise, say, for legal reasons, in what you say, the teleprompter is a good option.
- To look good using a teleprompter, mix it up a little.
- The best option may be having notes on the teleprompter, not a full text.
- The bottom line? Let the technology support you.
- Nick also cautions you about presenting while sitting.
Standing up while others are sitting automatically bestows some authority on the standee. And there are times when it’s important to claim that authority, just as there are times when it’s OK to be collegial. Just be aware that when you sit down, you are first and foremost saying, ‘I’m one of you.’ Don’t ‘say’ it unless you mean it.
- Jonathan Thomas presents ideas to reduce text on your slides.
Filling slides with useless text can be detrimental to your presentation’s health. I say “useless” because what’s written on a slide is (or should) also coming out of the presenter’s mouth. If they’re saying it, why does it also need to be on a slide? Too much text can be detrimental because the audience will inevitably read it, thus ignoring the most important part of the presentation – THE PRESENTER!
- Rhett Laubach offers a repetitive mantra for moving your audience.
Move my feet… get music going
Move my eyes… get visuals up
Move my ears…. get me up to speed on what we are going to do
Move my mouth… get me talking to others
Move my brain… get me thinking
Move me… get me physically moving on purpose
Move on…. get to the point
- John Zimmer extracts speaking habits from Kate Mosse’s writing tips.
- Do something every day.
- Set goals.
- Have a structure.
- Carry a notebook.
- Be comfortable.
- Angie Key (former District 50 Governor) is conducting a survey of Toastmasters members about conflict & communication within district teams.
She is “looking for feedback from Toastmasters leaders, past and present, on the best and worst examples they’ve experienced when it comes to conflict & communication on a Toastmasters team.”
Click here if you’d like to help her by answering a few short questions.
- Rich Hopkins provides sage advice for extracting the best from Toastmasters. Among the gems is:
Understand that TM isn’t the end-all be-all. Join NSA. Go to Dale Carnegie training, or the Bill Gove Workshop. Going in, remember, just because you’re a DTM, PDG, WCPS, and AS with a closet full of ribbons, certificates and trophies, chances are nobody will care. Unless they, like you, are a Toastmaster.