Article Category: Weekend Reviews

Best Public Speaking Articles: Weekly Review [2008-07-05]

Week In ReviewEvery Saturday, we survey the best public speaking articles from throughout the public speaking blogosphere. Topics featured this week include:

  • writing commencement speeches;
  • fear of public speaking;
  • handling adversarial audience members;
  • Toastmasters articles;
  • and many more.

Public Speaking Blogs

Week in Review: Public Speaking Blogosphere


One, keep it short. […] Two, make it about something you care about. And three, don’t give advice. Ever.

Speaker Habits

Yes, books and other materials will help you improve your speaking skills and give you useful tips that will prevent your speech from being a disaster. But the only way for you to actually become comfortable speaking to groups is to actually speak to groups. There’s no way around it.

Visual Aids

Resources for Speakers

Delivery Techniques

Toastmasters Articles

[Toastmasters] gives you the experience of a large variety of speaking styles […] The message is the one thing that separates professionals from amateurs. The professionals have spent days, months, and years working on one message. This can be one speech, one workshop, or one seminar.

The first school of thought is that you seek polished presenters and have entry requirements. The second school of thought is that you allow any person to join. […] there is a third option. You allow anyone to join regardless of their ability, but you make them show that they are serious.

Even with 500+ TM’s to take care of, even if mostly you’re staring at Excel sheets, you’re never too important to pitch in.

Sweating + staring + crowds = public-speaking

And to close…

For speech inspiration, here’s an index card gem from Jessica Hagy.

At first glance, this is a clever observation which provides public speaking humor. However, it is much richer than that; there’s a great lesson here for public speakers.

Seek common elements among not-so-common concepts. Most people do not view these two concepts (fear of public speaking and summer music festivals) as common. Yet, they share three elements (sweating, staring, crowds).

In your speeches, look for opportunities to explain one concept in terms of another which is more familiar to your audience. Depending on the relationships you choose, this can enhance understanding, generate humor, or both!

Jessica’s book Indexed is an inexpensive, but rich source of speech inspiration.

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Find more helpful public speaking articles in previous weekend reviews which are published regularly on Six Minutes.
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