The foundation of confidence

“The foundation of confidence in virtually every field is preparation.” —Brian Tracy

Public Speakers Need To Find Ways To Make Their Words Stick!

You’ve got great ideas trapped in you. You know the importance of public speaking and you want to use your speaking skills to make your audience’s lives better. The problem is that if you aren’t careful, what you say during your speech will just go in one ear and out the next. How can you make your next speech more “sticky”?

Everyone Loves A Good Picture

Considering how hard we speakers work to get our words right, you’d think that our audiences would have the common courtesy to develop the listening skills that will allow them to remember what we tell them, right?

Unfortunately, remembering words that we’ve been told is very hard for any audience to do. In fact, trying to remember a particular set of words when we’ve been hit with a bunch of different ideas during a speech can almost be impossible.

The good news here is that there is something else that works: pictures. Call it a fluke of evolution or whatever, but we humans do a much better job of remembering images than we do words. What this means for us as speakers is that we need to get better at creating mental images in our audience’s minds.

You might be thinking that all you have to do is to find the right image to put on a PowerPoint slide and then you’d be home free. Well yes and no. Doing this can certainly help make your message more memorable; however, it’s not where the real power comes from.

Instead, it’s the images that your audience create in their own minds that will stick for the longest time. These are the images that they build upon hearing the words that you say. What this means for you is that you need to start to use words that will describe the image that you want your audience to be imagining. Talk about how things look, what they would feel like if you could touch them, what color they are, how big they are, and of course what makes them unique or memorable when you look at them.

If You Can Tell A Story, You Can Make An Idea Stick

Painting images in your audience’s mind is a great way to start to make what you are telling them stick. However, you can take this one step further if you are willing to tell stories.

This is one area where you do need to be careful. Just telling any old story isn’t going to be enough. Instead, you need to tell stories that are going to connect with your audience and you need to make sure that those stories relate to the points that you are trying to make in your speech.

The stories that you tell need to be memorable. In order for this to happen, you need to make them be both emotional and unexpected.

The reason that you want to make your stories emotional is because if you can appeal to your audience’s emotions, then you will have found a way to make your story “sticky”. Long after you are done telling your story, your audience will remember what you said.

The worst kind of story that you can tell is a boring story. This means that you need to make sure that your story contains unexpected elements. By doing this you don’t allow your audience to become complacent and start to think that they know how your story is going to turn out. Keep showing them that they haven’t heard this story before!

What All Of This Means For You

All too often when we give a speech, our speeches which appear to us to be fantastic are loaded with too much information for our audiences to absorb. What we say goes in one ear and out the other. Clearly something has to change here.

As speakers, we are always looking for presentation tips that will allow us to share the benefits of public speaking. Getting our ideas to stick requires us to use two presentation tips: creating mental images and telling stories. The images that we can build in our audience’s minds are what will cause our key points to stick. We can enhance the “stickiness” of our message by adding stories to our speech. Long after the speech is over, the stories will be remembered and retold by our audience.

In today’s busy, busy world, it is no longer enough for us to give a good speech. We need to take the time to add presentation tips such as mental image building and the telling of stories to our speeches in order to make them stick. Doing so will transform your next speech from forgettable to life changing!


Dr. Jim Anderson

Your Source For Real World Public Speaking Skills?

Do you give speeches today, but want to learn how be more effective? Dr. Jim Anderson believes that great business skills are no substitute for poor presentation skills. Dr. Anderson will share with you the knowledge that he has gained while working to improve the speaking ability of both individuals and teams of speakers for over 20 years. Learn the secrets of effective speakers and really connect with your audience during your next speech.

If you want to follow Dr. Anderson on Twitter, he can be found at:

Talking too fast?

The trouble with talking too fast is you may say something you haven’t thought of yet.
Ann Landers

How to be a Great Speaker – Tomorrow

Speaking to a trade or professional group-or to a client’s employees-is really quite simple. If you’re not a professional speaker and want to become one, or are one and want to do it better, here are some shortcuts in one concise article. (And these rules apply to managers at meetings, executives at conferences, presenters at board meetings, and anyone else seeking to influence an audience.)

Cato speaks

Grasp your subject. The words will follow.
Cato the elder.

Build public speaking confidence – “Scout the territory”

One of the most valuable antidotes to the fear of public speaking and public speaking nerves is to be prepared.

Preparedness and its relation to confidence covers many aspects.

And one of the most powerful is what I call “scouting the territory.”

If at all possible, arrive at the venue early and make it your own. Walk the walk you will make to the stage or lectern. Walk around the room and make yourself comfortable with your surroundings.

Make sure any equipment is prepared and become familiar with how it will work for you and your speech, and what the options are.

If the room could be set up better to suit your presentation, then organize to have that done, if possible.

The most important thing is to feel comfortable with those surroundings … feel confident walking, standing, looking. later, when you are visualizing our presentation, you can include that feeling of confidence as you visualise yourself in the surroundings where you will present. Visualise the confident walk. Visualise yourself confidently using the space. And visualise yourself confidently presenting, and successfully incorporating any equipment.

Conquer the fear of public speaking

Conquer Your Fear of Public Speaking

Let’s begin by hearkening back to a time when Romans considered it to be good sport to feed Christians to the lions. One day, the festivities had been going as usual when a strange thing happened. The Christian in the arena whispered something to the lion. The lion then turned tail and slunk away.

The crowd was amazed. The Emperor was impressed. He let it be known that he would spare the Christian’s life if the man would reveal the secret of what he had said to the lion.

The Christian was brought before the Emperor. In a powerful voice, he said, “I told him he would have to say a few words after dinner.”

The lion’s reaction should not surprise anyone who has been asked to “say a few words.” If you are like most people, a jolt of adrenaline courses through your body, your heart beats a bit faster, and your breathing becomes shallow. It’s possible, too, that your palms get sweaty, your knees feel like Jell-O, and your mind goes blank.

Some years ago, The Sunday Times of London published a list of people’s greatest fears. The fear of public speaking took first place, while “death” placed seventh. Though I don’t really believe that most people would rather die than speak, I have had clients say to me, “But you only die once!”

…

Public Speakers: How to Say, “I Don’t Know” From the Platform and Not Lose Credibility

Does being afraid that you cannot effectively field questions by the audience keep you from accepting opportunities for public speaking? You are not alone; believing you will look like a dummy and lose your credibility (or the sale) for not knowing an answer can be overwhelming.

Growing beyond this concern starts with a look at this possibility from your audience’s perspective. The audience has arrived because it has all ready been determined that you are credible and know what you are taking about. Agree with the person who gave you the nod to speak to this group.

Agreement is powerful and a two-edged sword. Two or more people who believe presenter may get themselves in trouble must be avoided at all costs so tell those close to you who are concerned to hush. Remember the audience is not thinking in this vein. These opposing actions can create a perfect storm. Did you see the movie? This is not a good thing.

Managing the, “I don’t know” scenario is the same on and off the platform. You have a few ways to handle this.

1. Get Real and Plan: While planning the presentation play devil’s advocate by intentionally trying to stump yourself. Looking at the presentation in an attempt to pick it apart is a best practice and is a terrific way to ward off a potentially uncomfortable scenario. If while asking tough questions about your material you may discover a key point that needs to be added to the body of the presentation. If so, add it.

If what you discover is important and should be the pivotal point of the presentation, then rewrite the introduction and work it into the body and the conclusion. Your opening statements should be statement with a promise of sorts to prove your statement and therefore must be within the body and the conclusion of the presentation.

By the way, the trick of speaking well into the Q&A session to avoid questions is not unprofessional nor does it work.

2. Be Real and Fess Up: It is going to happen you know – getting stumped. If you are not Elvis and have, “left the building” someone, at some point, will approach and leave you speechless. Whether this happens from the platform or one-on-one after the presentation – your answer can be the same, “Good Question. And, (pause) I do not know. I will, however, quickly research that answer after we are finished here or if you would prefer, leave your contact information (eMail) with ____________ (name your host) I will get back with you before day’s end.” If you are stumped during the presentation you may also add, “Is anyone in the audience know the answer or this question?” As always be sure all members of the audience can hear the question and the answer to every question.

Warning: Not following up with an answer will cost your credibility, the sale, or both.

3. Be Professional and Network: As an ongoing practice, surround yourself with people who know more than you so you may call upon to help you with the answer (and more). Dr. Ted Becker, one of two people in history who have a PhD in human performance said, “It is important to be the dummy of the group. The only way there is up.” Surprisingly, knowledgeable people often cannot find a person in to mentor. Recently, Karen Timmons with Dell, Inc. said, “It is not a crime to not know the answer. It is, however, a crime to not know who does.”

Consider this incident:

Lat week I was in the exam room with my doctor when he took his cell phone from his pocket and searched for the answer to my question. This was blatant evidence that my doctor doesn’t know all things medical. This came as no surprise to me as even the best cannot answer all things. Nor is it reasonable to think so. (Your audience knows this.) In my mind my doctor’s credibility actually increased as it appeared that my question and I were important to him.

Get Real. Be Real. Be a Professional.

Be Not Afraid.


Kathryn is owner of Write Speak Transcribe Business Services
Kathryn has been a freelance writer for fifteen years and a Food Service Management Specialist for eighteen years.
She is a dynamic speaker who provides her client’s end users with a presentation that yields responses like, “Thanks for telling me that!” and “Where do I sign?” She specializes in providing her client’s an opportunity to contribute to their customer’s knowledge base in a particular area — a customer enlightenment that oft times is not sales related yet produces an increase in the bottom line of those who utilize her.
Timely and accurate transcription services are managed by Kathryn’s mother, Onita Walker. Onita types 120 words a minute with accurate spelling and punctuation and has 40 years experience transcribing confidential conversations in the field of law.
Words are powerful and words are our passion.
Cell (928) 713-1812

Storytelling Secrets from the Masters

Enthralling speakers interweave captivating stories into their key points.

What are the nuances that distinguish an entrancing story from a boring one?

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Saying the right thing at the right place …

The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right place but to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment. ~Dorothy Nevill