What is your story?

People have told an infinite number of stories since we first gathered around a campfire in the dark and needed to pass the time and keep the shadows away. How many have you heard? How many do you remember? How do you find yours? There are an infinite number of stories, but only a few […]

The Three Tasks of a Public Speaker

The work of a public speaker is never done. You can never complete your expertise – true knowledge of a subject is the work of a lifetime. You can never finish perfecting your presentation – even Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech had some slips of the tongue, and it is generally considered […]

How to help your audience remember what you say

Our memories are not as good as even the most pessimistic of us fear they are, alas. That has disturbing implications for speakers. We study our field, master it, craft a speech, master that, practice delivery – and give the speech with as much passion as we can muster. And the audience remembers perhaps 10 percent […]

Here’s how to handle a problem most speakers face

You’re a speaker. You’re going to give the morning keynote speech at 9:00 AM at a top conference with an audience of 1,000. You’re pumped. As part of the invitation to speak, you’ve been asked to attend a dinner the night before, in order to meet the audience, mingle with them, and – by the […]

How to Give an Impromptu Speech

A client and friend asked me the other day about impromptu speeches. His question, basically, was, to give consistently good impromptu speeches, do you memorize something (or a few pieces of something) and then trot those out at the key moment? Or, if you actually make them up in the moment, how do you think […]