Sunday, July 10, 2016

Beware of anything labeled as a Complete Guide

My Google alert on the phrase “public speaking” pointed me to an article from July 9th at Clapway by freelance writer Jonathan Emmen from Copenhagen titled How to Avoid All Possible Flops in Your Public Speech - The Complete Guide.

It’s just over a thousand words, so his title is a hilarious overreach. (Back on February 29, 2016 he wrote a LinkedIn Pulse article on why 10 Bits of How To Success Advice Are Absolute Twaddle).

What are some things Jonathan left out of that Clapway article?

The first one is a written introduction for your speech. Back on November 9, 2009 I blogged about what can go wrong in a post titled An unforgettable introduction for a professor

The second one is technology like a PowerPoint presentation, assuming the venue provides a computer and projector. You need to have that presentation file on a thumb drive, and a backup CD or online version that can be loaded and run through well before your speech is scheduled to begin. You also may bring printed handouts.

A third is what to look for if you are bringing a computer. In a blog post on July 12, 2014 I mentioned Three things to check so your presentation doesn’t go up in smoke:

“Before you head out the door with your laptop, check that:

1. Your desktop display has appropriate wallpaper and no naughty icons like My Porn Files.

2. Your screen saver isn’t Not Safe for Work (NSFW) like the one shown in this video.

3. Your PowerPoint handout doesn’t contain an embedded Excel workbook full of unrelated but proprietary data. (Save it as a .pdf file, or just include the spreadsheets you used for that presentation).”

A fourth is to prepare by having a checklist. I discussed that topic in a February 1, 2011 blog post titled Is your speech ready for takeoff? Are you sure? For example, if you are bringing a laptop you need to also have your wireless presentation remote and spare batteries, etc.

Back in 2009 Joseph A. Grippo wrote a 56 page book titled A Complete Guide to Public Speaking. It isn’t complete. In 2007 Jeffrey P. Davidson wrote a 336 page book titled The Complete Guide to Public Speaking. It’s also not really complete.

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