Thursday, December 28, 2017

Our top 10 public speaking posts for 2017

According to the most-read posts on this blog in 2017, readers are concerned about the many situations in which women are silenced and how to counter. But you're also just as concerned about how to improve your speaking, whether it's figuring out how to prepare better, or how to emulate one of the most popular TED talks. That's the mix of most-read posts this year, a combination of the personal and the political when it comes to public speaking. Take a look at what your fellow readers thought were our most important posts:
  1. What linguists think about "um:" Guess who gets punished for using it? turned to linguists when the New York Times perpetuated the myth that um should be eradicated from your speech – and the linguists pointed out a particular disadvantage for women in this debate.
  2. When a man hogs the mic at the Women's March documented how Michael Moore spoke longer any other individuals at the March, even though prominent women speakers were interrupted and told to wind up their remarks quickly. Actor Ashley Judd came up with a masterful way to stop Moore and let the program continue.
  3. 10 questions to make you a more resilient speaker in 2017 was our list of resolutions for the year, in the form of questions to ask yourself as you set goals. How would you answer them this year?
  4. Silencers: In appearance v. content for women speakers, guess which wins? In this year of backlash against women speakers, their wardrobes did not escape criticism, and in some cases, focus on their wardrobes served to silence their messages.
  5. When the male moderator won't let the lone woman panelist speak highlighted an especially egregious example of a nearly all-male panel and its impact on a brilliant woman scientist was ignored for the majority of the proceeding, and mansplained for the rest.
  6. 39 lies, myths, and mistaken notions speakers tell themselves is a collection of the myths speakers use to describe themselves or their process when I am coaching that. Do you use any of these?
  7. Why speaker coaches think you should spend more time preparing. You hear it over and over speaker coaches: the more time you spend preparing, the better your talk will be. But preparation is almost always the thing that speakers give short shrift. Find out why the coaches disagree.
  8. Women and power? The double standard of the severed head builds on an article by classic scholar Mary Beard Trump' s use of a violent image of Hillary Clinton being beheaded as Medusa,  in comparison to a similar image that came under fire when comedian Kathy Griffin imitated it. The first image caused no outcry; but when when a woman used it, she had to apologize and it nearly ruined her career.
  9. What made this one of TED's most popular talks in 2016? breaks down a popular talk about meditation and bad habits so you can see some of the basics of what goes into a popular talk at this popular conference.
  10. Want to boost conference attendance? Add women speakers pokes at something that's always bothered me: why women have trouble getting on the program at most conferences, while women's conferences draw record attendance and profits. And conferences that make a point of boosting attendance by women see the results. Try it in 2018.
(Creative Commons licensed photo by SM5_1000)

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