14 Ways to Improve Your Public Speaking

Interested in improving your public speaking skills? This great graphic plus the list below will help you get better:

* Stay in the 2 zone… unless you are going to move to “happy birthday level memorization”… meaning you can do the talk without thinking about it… stay in understanding your content and speaking to it authentically vs. reading a speech

* Embrace silence in your presentations in place of Um, Ah, You-Know, and Right?. You already have command of the presentation and you don’t need to fill the space with “helper words”.

* Know your message and answer the “so what, who cares” for everything you say. Why does the receiver actually care about what you are saying?

* Use a digital pen for remote presentations. Underline, circle, make marks, keep your audience engaged

* Demos are not better than a slide if it doesn’t provide value to the audience. Your goal is to deliver value.

* Ask, “what is your reaction” vs. “do you have questions”. “What is your reaction” gives you concrete information back, not just a “no questions”

* Use tools to get engagement like polls that can get responses real-time

* Use “10 seconds of uncomfortable silence” when asking questions to the audience. Let them fill it vs. you and give them time to respond. Too often people ask for questions and give them 2 seconds to respond.

* Never speak to “this slide says”… people care about your message, not the slide. Don’t let your message get lost in the assets you use. I’ve heard people use the term… “I’m not going to ‘drain the slide'”… if you are saying that, you’ve already lost them

* Personalize your intro, relate it to the audience, and use it later the presentation. Your passion, how it connects to you, how it relates to the presentation. You are a human, they are humans, we are all humans helping each other get better

* Use stage gates with section slides to cut up the presentation into segments. Don’t just go from slide, to slide, to slide. Have breaks and vary the pace.

* Slow it down. People take time to take your information in. Use natural pauses and seek input and engagement.

* Seek feedback and continuously improve. We all have areas we can make flow better, deliver better.

* If your first three slides don’t hook the audience, you don’t keep them. Don’t bury your lead. Focus on taking and holding their attention until the end.

Here is my LinkedIn post on this:

(2) Post | Feed | LinkedIn

Also, check this out from waitbutwhy. Just excellent breakdown:

Doing a TED Talk: The Full Story

Nathan Lasnoski

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