Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The top 10 speaker tips and ideas from June

It's commencement season (which prompts a lot of outdoor speaking). Graduate into July with these tips and ideas, representing the most popular posts as selected by readers:

  1. Gentle self-promotion: Is it OK to toot your own horn? looked at one area where women sometimes hesitate to speak up: when it's about themselves.  Tips and ideas are included to help.
  2. Can you boost your memory by practicing out loud?  The latest post in our "speaking science" series shares research about how the brain is prompted by speech to recall things--but only under certain circumstances. Check out the post for details.
  3. So, do you start sentences with so? kicked up lots of reaction. This post takes the time to discern between and among different uses of "so" at the start of a sentence, and what some of the ramifications are for speakers.
  4. Want to engage an audience?  Making the audience a part of your keynote can enrich your content, engage the audience and hold its attention.  Two solid examples demonstrate how.
  5. Face-to-face tools to help speakers shares three new tools, for web conferencing, for video chat (perhaps to rehearse with a pal) and for prepping yourself for negotiations.  Check out these options to strengthen your preparations and speaking.
  6. New challenges for speakers at conferences are tantalizing options to try.  "Battledecks" is a new one that pits a speaker against random slides, against which you have to give an extemporaneous presentation.  This post describes it, and solicits you for information: Have you tried this?
  7. The best way to be boring is to leave nothing out.  These "thoughts for the thorough" may be able to help you sift, sort and plan your way to a clearer and more engaging presentation.
  8. Need to speak at an anniversary?  Putting words in your mouth: Anniversary speeches and toasts gives you online tools and references you can use to spark ideas, share engaging content and themes, and avoid overlapping with other speakers.
  9. How do you take notes for speeches?  I've got three new technology options that can help you mark source documents, find and share quotes, and make and save notes.
  10. Meeting skills:  Listen better by losing the fidgets shares some options for when you're not talking, so you can keep tabs on others in the room.
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