This tactic works well for a variety of reasons. It pokes fun at a part of the ceremony that audiences dread, making it part inside joke, part game--and it challenges the speakers to give crisper, tighter remarks. How might you use this as a speaker or organizer?
- Copy this idea for your next award ceremony. Ask winners for a headline, a 10-word acceptance for your 10th anniversary, a tweet-length remark, five words that capture why they got into the profession or the question they still wish they could answer. (Do specify a word limit, though, and announce it to the audience.)
- Use it for a panel discussion. Why put the audience through a panel that keeps answering questions with, "As Bill just said...." or "If I can just add to that...."? Tell the panelists they need to confine answers to five words and make a game out of the Q&A portion.
- Use it to introduce speakers. Ask moderators or introducers (at a ceremony, panel or conference) to intro the speakers with five keywords everyone should know about them...or ask speakers to submit five word or 140-character bios.
- Make the audience play. Ask for questions that are five words, 10 words or 140 characters long. It's a great way to engage audience members already on Twitter, which will count characters for them.
Share your ideas for keeping speaking roles short in the comments!