10 tips for public speaking | March 10, 2011

If you’re going to be speaking at a conference soon—for instance SXSW—here are my top 10 tips.

  1. Start with a story (but not your life story).
  2. Aim high and leave them wanting more.
  3. Entertain, inspire and educate (in that order).
  4. One concept per slide.
  5. Pictures not bullets.
  6. Talk to your audience not at them.
  7. Use the stage but don’t pace.
  8. It’s all about pacing (different kind cheeky) and delivery, so practice.
  9. Dress slightly smarter than your audience (the Veen rule).

Posted at March 10, 2011 3:44 PM


Bramus! said on March 13, 2011 11:18 AM

10. Name your talk 10 tips, even if you only have 9 (or even less).

Andy Budd said on March 17, 2011 12:41 AM

That’s annoying. I’m sure I initially wrote 10 tips. One must have fell down the back of the sofa :)

Jeremy Keith said on March 18, 2011 3:35 AM

Andy, you keep attributing “Dress slightly smarter than your audience” to Jeffrey Veen, and I keep reminding you that he never said it; it was a comment by Bryan Mason on Jeff’s blog post about public speaking: http://veen.com/jeff/archives/000483.html#comment-153646133

Drew Jordan said on March 18, 2011 6:22 PM

I assume that having only 9 tips on a list of 10 tips, is supposed to tie in with #2, and leave us wanting more?

Very clever how you worked in proof for one of your points.