Best Public Speaking Articles: Weekly Review [2008-05-24]
Every Saturday, we survey the best public speaking articles from throughout the public speaking blogosphere.
Topics featured this week include:
- the standard for conference presentations;
- teleprompter (mis)use;
- audience considerations;
- humor tips; and
- PowerPoint advice.
Week in Review: Six Minutes
This week featured one article on Six Minutes:
- Connect With Your Audience: Don’t Hide Your Emotions When Speaking
Highlights the importance of showing appropriate emotions when speaking.
Week in Review: Public Speaking Blogosphere
These are the best recent public speaking articles:
- Seth Godin links increasing transportation costs and improved online conferencing options to suggest that the standard for conference presentations is rising.
Here’s what a speaker owes an audience that travels to engage in person: more than they could get by just reading the transcript.
- Bert Decker uses Barack Obama as his example when discussing proper and improper teleprompter use. Several other tips on reading your speech are available in a previous article: Never Read Your Speech… Never?
[…] it’s not very difficult to learn it – takes very little practice. And once done, you can ‘appear’ to be speaking to the entire audience – not just stiffly reading and moving your head from side to side – 4 seconds by 4 seconds.
- Marilyn Jess relays lessons learned from her recent emcee experience.
[…] hosting any event is a performance; as such rehearsal and attention to detail are a must; grooming, dress, choice of accessories, all these small details must be considered carefully because all eyes are on you for much of the time.
- Colin Moorhouse emphasizes the differences in speech research depending on whether your audience is composed of topical experts or a more general demographic.
This is where the God question comes in handy. The God question takes various forms – usually prefaced by the phrase ” If you were God…..” followed by words that might elicit a more voluminous response.
- Kathy Reiffenstein itemizes five things not to do in front of an audience.
- Don’t be Disorganized
- Don’t Make it All About You
- Don’t Communicate More Than Your Audience Can Absorb
- Don’t Get Blindsided by Questions
- Don’t Apologize
- Tom Antion describes how to choose the one person to whom you direct your punch line.
If you direct a punch line or comment to a person in the audience, the other members of the audience will naturally look in that direction. If they see someone laughing, there is a high probability they will laugh too.
- James Feudo breaks down three required elements for getting a laugh from the audience.
- Ensure that your joke is funny to begin with.
- Ensure that the audience has the ability to laugh about your joke.
- Deliver it in a way that encourages the audience to laugh.
- Ellen Finkelstein provides step-by-step instructions for creating section markers in PowerPoint presentations.
In order to help your audience understand where the current slide sits in the whole structure, you can create section markers that appear throughout the presentation. Each slid displays all of the section names, but the current section is bold, or a different color, so that the audience always knows which section you’re currently discussing.
- Nilofer Merchant refutes “eight great PowerPoint myths.”
- PowerPoint = Strategy
- Bullets Make PowerPoint Great
- Maximize All Slide Real Estate
- State the Problem Plainly
- Animations and Special Effects Are Critical
- Data Is the Heart of Every Presentation
- Presentations Should Start Fast
- The Presentation Is Everything