For only $10NZD this bundle deal features an ebook with 37 juicy chapters, nearly 14,000 words across 89 pages plus a 1hour34mins audiobook version (read by me).
Inspired by my recent TEDx talk “The Public Speaking Lesson You Never Had”, the guide details nearly all that I know about public speaking.
It’s loaded with personal reflections, professional experiences and insider insights on how to do that which most people fear. I’ve crammed it full of lessons from my speaker coaching career, resources and examples of best practice (which are tried and tested on me plus stolen from many others), applicable story models and frameworks, along with strategies on tackling the biggest hurdles of nerves and emotional connectivity.
Here are two teaser chapters:
“After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.”— Phillip Pullman
As detailed in my bio, I was the licensee and producer of the TEDxWellington events for nearly ten years.
During that time I developed and delivered to all speakers for the later events a five week coaching experience to aid the development of their talks. One year we had an individual we were failing as we were busy encouraging them (along with the other speakers) to stand in their story, project out and connect with the audience in this single way.
Well this person just wasn’t comfortable with this and as the weeks passed it became apparent it wasn’t going to work. I remember the conversation with them exploring other alternatives and the answer immediately came from a simple comment she made about sitting in her office, across from her clients on two comfy sofas and how that was when she was her most authentic self.
That was it, we sat the speaker in a comfy chair and wow, instant success. The talk became intimate and focussed. Delicate as well as powerful.
This was the best version of them to deliver their story in their way, not in our expected way of standing.
It also aligns with a favourite TED talk of mine which is a deeply moving, gentle and poignant, all delivered whilst sitting in a chair (please check out BJ Miller 2015’s TED talk, What really matters at the end of life). Another case of cultivating closeness through the simple act of sitting.
You’ll learn in a later chapter (DIVA) that understanding and stipulating the best environmental factors for you to deliver a great talk is paramount. I’m hoping the above story and examples give solid reasons to think differently in this area (albeit in rare cases).
One word of caution here for those hosting and ‘sitting’ on panels at events: this is a very different domain to what is described above in terms of a solo speaker in a chair. Unless you use clever lighting it’s very hard to create the same effect as I’ve described in the other cases although much of the other stuff in the book can be applied in this scenario.
“Anyone can make the simple complicated. Creativity is making the complicated simple.”— Charles Mingus
Not many people like the way they sound. However, I guarantee you sound just fine enough.
Accents rule. Lean into them with just a side consideration of clarity for those with thick regional ones. Over the years, due to my international work plus living overseas for over a decade, my Welsh accent has softened. I still roll my “r’s” heavily and when I get excited it comes out wonderfully. I just make sure I enunciate correctly and it’s never been an issue.
I’d like you to consider how cadence, the way you modulate your voice and add stresses to what’s being said, are the inflections that can assist the audience to consider the importance of certain aspects of the story. Important for those who have a quiet ‘flat’ tone and what’s needed for this is to consider elevating the stresses with emotion.
Just like the cadence, the rhythm is another aspect for consideration. Varying the speed throughout any talk can be an effective way to add some ‘colour’ to an orators style. Although, don’t have too much of a difference here as it will sound awful plus confusing, just like someone is playing with a speed dial in your brain.
It’s best to play around with just subtle shifts in both cadence and rhythm which match the emotional range of the subject being discussed, like a little faster when it’s an exciting element of the story with a higher register and then slowing down again to enunciate for the poignant aspects which allows for reflection.
By the way if you want to create tension or make the listeners understand the importance of a statement, just take a second and pause.
A pause is like an underline in writing.
It emphasises what came before.
Now the other way to do this is to repeat something. However this can only be used sparingly, like cumin in cooking.
Repeating something, even twice in a talk, gets noticed and I would suggest using this trick just once. Focus it on your biggest point or statement or piece of information which is truly arresting. Like a statistic which generates a ‘wow’ from when you share it, or a summarising line or two to distiLl a big topic which you’ve been introducing, or a revealing insight from a lived experience or even report. Again, make sure to be careful with this beyond a one time use.
In this bundle deal you not only get the ebook but also the audiobook as well, read by me. Again, here’s the SITTING chapter above in verbal form:
And here’s the ‘Table of Contents’ for the guide as well:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR (AGAIN)
If you’re new here, a little about my pedigree:
As a Creative Producer, DK works with a wide range of clients ‘crafting delicious learning experiences’ either online, in-studio or in person events. He is the 9yr-ex-TEDxWellington / TEDxWellingtonWomen licensee plus founder of the unique video podcast Creative Welly and the annual Creative Leadership NZ conference.
He’s also a Speaker Coach, working with CEO’s and senior executives plus a random ex-All Black and Dame thrown into the mix plus delivers internal masterclasses on the topics of ‘purposeful storytelling’ to small leadership groups.
Previously, DK established Collider, a city-wide programme focussed on transforming Wellington into an internationally recognised Smart Capital (with 200 events in 14 months with over 5000 attendees).
He also founded Mediasnackers in 2006 and through it has over a decade of working in the social media space consulting / delivering training & consulting on five continents and to a cross-sector range of clients from UNICEF, Gates Foundation, BBC, Ubisoft, Hasbro plus spent time as a social media manager for a national education company in NZ.
And the TEDx talk which inspired this:
This has been 20 years in the making and I do hope it ignites creative action plus aids your future public speaking endeavors: