Author of the well-known book Nineteen Eighty Four, George Orwell, has a few interesting things to say about the art of writing. When I read them, I was struck by how much of this is also applicable to public speaking. For example he scorns that writers often simply “put down a mass of words which obscure the real meaning” (1949, pg. vi). How often do we have to listen to speakers who do just that?
He gives a few rules for effective writing which are equally applicable for public speaking. Have a look:
“Never use a long word where a short one will do
If it is possible to cut a word out, cut it out
Never use the passive (I was knocked down by a car) where you can use the active (a car knocked me down)
Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word or a jargon word if you can think of an English equivalent”(Orwell, 1949, pg. vi).
As public speakers we are well advised to apply these rules as well –it will be easier to listen to us and, what’s more, people will enjoy listening to what we have to say.
Check out the chapter on effective language use in my book Public Speaking –From Preparation to Presentation on amazon.com
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Have you been in stressful situations lately? Stressful situations have the uncomfortable habit of leaving me out of balance and breathless. And when I’m out of breath, I can’t speak nor think properly.
Not good for meeting clients or speaking well!
Here’s an exercise to help get back your energy and breath. You can then work from a place of inner balance and control. You can do this exercise while you wait in the cue at the bank or in a shop, or when you travel, just before an important appointment, or a potentially stressful meeting …
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If you're into public speaking, you are probably familiar with the following study by Albert Mehrabian:
(Apparently) 55% of your presented message is communicated via your body language; 38% through the tone of your voice and only 7% of meaning through words.
Is this really the magic formula for successful public speaking? What is the truth about this? In this blog, I will explore the relationship between the content, body language, tone of voice and facial expression. You will learn more about the impact of these factors on your credibility as a speaker.
Do you know what time of the day is your most productive time?
Studies show that, although everyone has a personal rhythm, there are numerous similarities amongst us, e.g.:
What does that mean for our working day? Determine your personal efficiency curve.