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Thread: Public speaking

  1. #1
    Money List Winner Rooter's Avatar
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    Public speaking

    Who is good at it? I am having to do it more and more for work, biggest audience so far is about 200 people (all german! and i only speak english!)

    I have an event in Bucharest next month where i am delivering a 45 minute keynote to 5/600 people! Starting to get nervous about it already!

    Anyone actually good at it? any good tips? once i get my flow, i'm fine, but brick it before getting on stage. Find i end up speaking too fast, so worked on some breathing exercises..
    Owner of golf clubs, dusty golf clubs...

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    Re: Public speaking

    Quote Originally Posted by Rooter View Post
    Who is good at it? I am having to do it more and more for work, biggest audience so far is about 200 people (all german! and i only speak english!)

    I have an event in Bucharest next month where i am delivering a 45 minute keynote to 5/600 people! Starting to get nervous about it already!

    Anyone actually good at it? any good tips? once i get my flow, i'm fine, but brick it before getting on stage. Find i end up speaking too fast, so worked on some breathing exercises..

    When I first started teaching first aid as an instructor, I used to sit in the class before hand and thought this will be easy. Er it wasn't.
    But if everything is well prepared, you should have no real problems.The old adage " Fail to prepare, prepare to fail " is spot on.
    If you are asked questions and you don't know the answer, be honest and tell them you will try to find out.
    look for the friendly faces in the audience, the odd joke goes down well, but I don't know any Hungarian jokes.
    Let us know how it goes.

  3. #3
    Money List Winner Rooter's Avatar
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    Re: Public speaking

    Quote Originally Posted by Tashyboy View Post
    the odd joke goes down well, but I don't know any Hungarian jokes.
    Its lucky you don't! Bucharest is in Romania! thanks Tashy!
    Owner of golf clubs, dusty golf clubs...

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  4. #4
    Ryder Cup Winner Hobbit's Avatar
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    Re: Public speaking

    I do a fair bit of this sort of thing, and have done for about 15 years... I still get nervous. However, a few tips that were given to me.

    Develop a 'trigger' to start every presentation. It might be "hi, I'm Rooter of the Root and I'm really looking forward to sharing xxxxx with you." You pick something that suits you, and is simple to get the flow going.

    Don't worry about mistakes. The audience don't know your script.

    Do a dry run, speaking out loud and stood up. And if you want to be pedantic about it, in front of a mirror.
    Give it big humpties

  5. #5
    Money List Winner GreiginFife's Avatar
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    Re: Public speaking

    Public speaking to large audiences is a mainstay of my job. Over the years I have been given loads of tips but it's a bit like golf clubs in that a lot of it is personal to you and, well, your personality.
    Lots of the tips didn't work because they felt forced to me.
    What I did develop was a preamble to any presentation that acted as a front but not for the audience. I spend a few moments before taking stage and talking the preamble to myself so that when I get up there I am already in flow and ready to start the real thing. Works every time but can't say if it would or wouldnt work for you.
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  6. #6
    Money List Winner Rooter's Avatar
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    Re: Public speaking

    Thanks chaps!
    Owner of golf clubs, dusty golf clubs...

    Talks a lot of sense on twitter @scottroots

  7. #7
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    Re: Public speaking

    Quote Originally Posted by Rooter View Post
    Its lucky you don't! Bucharest is in Romania! thanks Tashy!
    Perhaps a joke about Ilie Nastase ?
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  8. #8
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    Re: Public speaking

    I used to train people on it and do a bit of it. A lot of it is common sense really, ensure you prepare well as no matter how good you think you are at winging it, you will not be as good as you think you are and an audience can smell someone underprepared a mile off.

    If you are using PowerPoint then do not have lots of text and just read off it as that is fatal. Appear interested in your audience and appear authentic, a bit of humour usually goes down well assuming it seems natural, if you are not naturally humourless then don't force it. Also might be stupid but make sure you talk to the audience and not the screen.

    Also visualisation can work well to reduce the fear, kind of same principle that sportspeople use but visualise yourself in front of the audience, it going well, people being engaged etc etc. And that will reduce the fear a lot. In the vast majority of cases the audience want you to succeed and start off interested in what you want to say. The first 30 seconds can be pivotal as people will make their initial minds up very quickly and as you say, people tend to have a tendency to rush it a bit if they are nervous, deep breathing will help there. When you speak the vast majority of the impression people have of you is actually made up of how you speak (pace, tone, volume) and how you act/body language, what you say plays a relatively small factor. So pay attention to that. Also have a glass or water handy, avoid milk before you speak (it will make your throat phlegmy) .

    And if all else fails http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4646010.stm
    Last edited by Hacker Khan; 26-Apr-2017 at 11:14.

  9. #9
    Money List Winner Rooter's Avatar
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    Re: Public speaking

    Quote Originally Posted by Hacker Khan View Post
    a bit of humour usually goes down well assuming it seems natural, if you are not naturally humourless then don't force it.
    Dude, i am the funniest person in my office!! (i work at home, alone)

    And i will forward the link to the wife, And worst case, my colleague David who will be there. He may have to take one for the team.
    Owner of golf clubs, dusty golf clubs...

    Talks a lot of sense on twitter @scottroots

  10. #10
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    Re: Public speaking

    Quote Originally Posted by Rooter View Post
    Dude, i am the funniest person in my office!! (i work at home, alone)

    And i will forward the link to the wife, And worst case, my colleague David who will be there. He may have to take one for the team.


    One other thing I would say is ensure you practice it in real time speaking out loud as if you were doing it. This helps on so many levels including timings and confidence. But also if you just do it in your head it will be brilliant, the best public speaker ever, guarantee it. But everyyone needs to do it out loud as it becomes apparent very quickly which bits don't flow, which bits you trip up on etc etc. And if you are using any presentation tool (PPT is a common culprit here) then remember that is purely a visual aid to help you, it is not the presentation, you are the presentation. It is used far too much as a crutch for people to read off and that is mostly excruciating.

    Best presentation I have seen in years was by a 20 year old paralympian recently who spoke for an hour to a big hall full of school governors using just 4 or 5 pictures. He just spoke from the heart about what he'd done and how he'd done it, no text flying in from different angles, no fancy templates. And he had the audience in tears of sadness, howling with laughter and every emotion in between. Utterly superb and you think if he can do it, why the hell can 95% of people who present at conferences and in businesses screw it up.

    Again apologies if this is teaching grandma to suck eggs but as I am sure you have, I have seen so many awful presentations in my time when people just ignore the basics.

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