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Reader Survey Results – January 2010

The Six Minutes reader survey results are in.

Thanks to everyone who was able to participate. Your feedback is valuable as it helps us plan Six Minutes articles for the future.

Based on the success of this survey, we plan to conduct more frequent surveys to formally solicit feedback from you.

Your informal feedback is welcome anytime. If you have questions or comments about anything on Six Minutes, please contact us.

What do you do to improve your speaking skills?

  • Nearly two thirds of respondents (63%) read public speaking books.
  • Over half of respondents (55%) are members of Toastmasters.
  • Nearly half of respondents (49%) read other speaking blogs.
  • Of those reporting in the “Other” category, the most frequent responses were “I speak often” and “I instruct others in speaking/presenting“.

Are you paid to speak?

  • One in 9 Six Minutes readers earn most of their income from speaking. (11% of respondents)
  • One in three earn part of their income from speaking. (11% + 23% = 34%)
  • Another third (33%) would like to start earning money from speaking.
  • That leaves one third of respondents (34%) who speak purely for the thrill.
    • We’ll continue to provide value for speakers of all types, whether you are being paid with dollars or applause.

How often do you deliver speeches or presentations?

  • Not surprisingly, more respondents report speaking at work with higher frequency than away from work.
  • One of every five respondents give presentations at work at least a few times a week (5% + 14% = 19%).
  • One in twenty respondents give presentations outside of work at the same frequency (1% + 5% = 6%).
  • The most common frequency reported was “less than once a month”, both at work (36%) and outside of work (46%).
    • These numbers were mildly surprising.  It is our belief that speaking more frequently will result in more rapid improvement in skills. So, a 2010 goal will be to encourage more speaking from Six Minutes readers. Does practice work? Absolutely!

Other insights from the survey results

  • Those earning income from speaking were more likely to participate in many skill-building activities (e.g. reading blogs and reading books and taking courses and attending Toastmasters and…). I did not, however, quantitatively measure this.
  • Collectively, respondents who indicated that they are Toastmasters members were:
    • Less likely to read other speaking blogs (45% of Toastmasters versus 55% of non-Toastmasters),
    • Less likely read speaking books and magazines  (59% to 67%),
    • More likely to use other speaking products  (25% to 16%),
    • Less likely to have a speaking coach  (2% to 9%) and
    • Much less likely to earn income as a speaker. (14% to 57%)
      • I believe this reflects differences in overall experience levels which were not captured by this survey.

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  1. ChristianK says:

    It would have been interesting to have data on which people have been toastmasters in the past.

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