Article Category: Weekend Reviews

Best Public Speaking Articles: Weekly Review [2008-12-13]

Week In ReviewOn Saturdays, we survey the best public speaking articles from throughout the public speaking blogosphere.

This week’s review features topics including:

  • delivering big and bold messages;
  • slide transitions;
  • speaking at conferences; and
  • reasons people walk out on your presentation.

Week in Review: Public Speaking Blogosphere


  • Pete Ryckman encourages speakers to aim big and be bold. [I particularly like the sentence which I italicized below — wonderful!]

Set the agenda early in your speech. The bigger your agenda, the more influential your speech can be. Nobody gets noticed (or respected) for a humdrum, laundry list speech numbed with copious PowerPoint, the Novocain of public speaking.

When you get the chance, go for the big moves. Don’t be tentative. Shake up — and wake up — your audience by stating big problems and proposing big solutions. Your audience wants to know where you stand on your topic. Tell them in no uncertain terms what you think should be done.

Visual Aids

Duarte Design (the creative firm behind Slide:ology, previously reviewed on Six Minutes) produced a series of wonderfully satiric videos about gratuitous slide transitions. I hope the series continues.

Cheesy slide transitions.  You’ve seen them.  You know them.  You loathe them.

You know the ones I am talking about—Boomerang, Checkerboard, Wedge, Blinds, Newsflash and heaven forbid, Random.  Speakers put them in their presentation thinking that they will somehow make the presentation more effective. Instead, they usually end up being more of a distraction.

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(Original articles…) The Trouble with Transitions: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3

Speaker Habits

One day, I wasn’t a speaker at conferences, and then I was. And then a little while later, I was a paid speaker. And now, I’m a decently paid speaker. Some day, I hope to be a really well-paid speaker. […] If you’re interested in speaking at events, I have some ideas on how you might get that going.

  • Lisa Braithwaite finds common ground between speaking skills and one-on-one communication skills.
  1. Focus your attention on the other person.
  2. Be aware of your nonverbal communication.
  3. Be clear and concise.
  4. Engage the other person.
  1. The person is in the wrong place.
  2. The person needs to use the restroom.
  3. The person received an important call or message.
  4. The person needed to leave early for another engagement.
  5. The person just realized that they had forgotton to do something important.
  6. You said something offensive.
  7. You used inappropriate humor or language.
  8. You went over the time limit.
  9. You said something out of line with the audience’s values.
  10. You’re boring the audience.

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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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