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7 Public Speaking Tips From World-Class TED Presenters

7 Public Speaking Tips From World-Class TED Presenters

Who wouldn’t want to get a crowd jumping up and down like Tony Robbins, or inspire an entire audience like Barack Obama?

You’d never know it, but most of these world-class TED speakers were made, not born. As with learning any new skill, you need to go to the best and model their path.

Here we have compiled the best public speaking tips from world-class TED speakers. Study these tips, and you could be the next world-class public speaker.

1. Show up to give, not to take

It’s not uncommon to see speakers get up on stage solely to sell their products or books. It’s blatantly obvious.

These are what Simon Sinek, a world-class speaker, calls “takers.” He elaborates by saying: “We are highly social animals. Even at a distance on stage, we can tell if you’re a giver or a taker, and people are more likely to trust a giver–a speaker that gives them value, that teaches them something new, that inspires them–than a taker.”

2. Focus on your breath to stay focused

Think about the last time you were nervous or had your adrenaline going.

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Whether you were aware during that experience or not (most people aren’t), your breathing was likely shallow. This makes it difficult to not only breathe, but it only increases your panic of nerves.

TED speaker coach, Gina Barnett, recommends: “Take three or four conscious, evenly-paced, smooth inhalations and exhalations. Let the belly go and let the breath go all the way down into your abdomen. This can center your energy and focus your thoughts.”

3. Leave the slides for the boardroom

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    The best speakers in the world–Tony Robbins, Gary Vaynerchuk, Simon Sinek–don’t use slides in their presentations.

    They are the slides, and more.

    “The single most important thing you can do to dramatically improve your presentations is to have a story to tell before you work on your PowerPoint file.” -Cliff Atkinson, Beyond Bullet Points

    This isn’t to say that there’s nothing wrong with using a presentation deck, you just need to have a captivating story to tell, whether you decide to use a presentation deck or not.

    4. Use plain English

    steve-resized-600

      The key to figuring out how to improve your communication skills? Simplicity.

      When Steve Jobs introduced the iPod, he could have talked about the long battery life, the ability to hold X gigabytes of music files, and the lightning-fast transfer speeds. But he didn’t use any of the typical technical words that a normal CEO would use.

      Instead, Jobs said: “iPod. One thousand songs in your pocket.”

      Upon closer look at Jobs’ presentation, his “headlines” solely consisted of powerful, memorable, specific statements that consistently add up to fewer than 140 characters.

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      Ask yourself: are you describing your product or idea in a “feature” format, instead of focusing on the vision?

      5. Leverage the power of the pause

      Most amateur speakers start out in their speaking career using “um” and “ah”, which create a nervous atmosphere around you. But the best TED speakers leverage the power of pausing, which gives the speaker enough time to think about his next statement, while creating a more dramatic effect.

      Going back to Steve Jobs, in his famous 2005 Stanford University commencement address, “How To Live Before You Die,” he paused nine times in the first minute alone.

      This may feel uncomfortable to a lot of first-time speakers, but there’s many ways to overcome this awkwardness. Gina Barnett calls it “focusing out.” She explains: “Pick anything–like the color green–and look all around you to see where you spot it in the room. Or pick an object to observe. Notice what shoes people are wearing, or who is wearing a watch. Or try paying attention to how light reflects off surfaces.”

      6. Embrace the art of the unexpected

      The magic, and the potential downside, of a live presentation is that anything can happen. Literally anything.

      From the slides not being formatted correctly to the mic dying in the middle of your presentation, you have to be prepared for just about anything.

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      The key is to embrace the unexpected, and be able to improvise with the flow of events happening, rather than be taken by surprise.

      7. Get the audience involved

      How do you remember more information? By immersion.

      The human brain was not naturally developed to learn through lectures. In fact, the National Training Laboratories came up with what’s now known as the “Learning Pyramid.” Their research findings discovered that humans retain:

      5% of what they learn when they’ve learned from a lecture (i.e. university/college lectures)
      10% of what they learn when they’ve learned from reading (i.e. books, articles)
      20% of what they learn from audio-visual (i.e. apps, videos)
      30% of what they learn when they see a demonstration
      50% of what they learn when engaged in a group discussion.
      75% of what they learn when they practice what they learned.
      90% of what they learn when they use immediately (or teach others)

      This means that no matter how great your presentation is, if your audience is not learning through immersion and interaction, they’re only going to retain a small fraction of your powerful message.

      Which of these public speaking tips will you try out? We’d love to hear it in the comments below.

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      Last Updated on March 12, 2019

      20 Inspiring Vision Statement Examples (2019 Updated)

      20 Inspiring Vision Statement Examples (2019 Updated)

      There is normally a lengthy list of things you need to consider when starting a business, and if you don’t manage them properly, your excitement can quickly turn into overwhelm. What can support you to stay inspired and on the right track when starting out? You guessed it: this is your vision statement.

      What Is a Vision Statement?

      A vision statement is like a photograph of your future business, which gives your business shape and direction.

      A vision statement provides the direction and describes what the founder wants the organization to achieve in the future; it’s more about the “what” of a business. It is different from a mission statement, which describes the purpose of an organization and more about the “how” of a business.

      If you were to take a photo of your future business now, what would it look like? What do you want your business to be recognized for one day?

      You need to have a crystal clear vision when you start out, otherwise you can get easily lost in deciding the best way forward. When you are making strategic decisions for your business and even daily operation decisions, your vision statement will give you the inspiration and targeted direction you need.

      The Importance of a Vision Statement

      Without a vision statement, your business will lack motivation to keep going.

      If you don’t aim for anything, you might not hit anything. The more specific and clear you are, the better your chances are at seeing your vision turn into reality.

      The importance of a vision statement cannot be overlooked; not only does it provide long term direction and guidance, but it also gives you the inspiration and the necessary energy to keep going when you feel lost.

      Always keep your vision statement alive by revisiting it regularly and communicating your vision with other members of the team, to inspire and motivate them as well.

      How to Craft an Inspiring Vision Statement

      1. Dream big and use clear language

      An inspiring vision statement should inform a clear direction and priorities for the organization, while challenging all the team members to grow together. Based on our expert sources’ advice, we’ve got some great tips for you:

      • Imagine how you want the business to be like in five to ten years.
      • Infuse the business’ values in the statement.
      • Make sure that the statement is implying a clear focus for the business.
      • Write your vision statement in the present tense.
      • Use clear and concise language.
      • Ensure the statement is easily understood.

      There are many different types of vision statements and there is no wrong or right way to do it. The most important thing is to resonate with it. It will always inspire you and give you a clear targeted direction.

      2. Get inspirations from the successful companies.

      Having researched on a number of successful companies’ vision statements, I’ve shortlisted 20 good examples for the new startups:

      Short vision statements made up of a few words only:

      1. Disney

      To make people happy.

      2. Oxfam

      A just world without poverty.

      3. Ikea

      To create a better every day life for the many people.

      Quantitative statements are based on numbers, quantities:

      4. Microsoft

      Empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

        5. Nike

        Bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete* in the world. (*If you have a body, you are an athlete.)

          Qualitative statements are based on qualities that you want to have:

          6. Ford

          People working together as a lean, global enterprise to make people’s lives better through automotive and mobility leadership.

          7. Avon

          To be the company that best understands and satisfies the product, service and self-fulfillment needs of women—globally.

          Competitor based statements – this type is becoming less common, but famous examples are:

          8. Honda – in 1970

          We will destroy Yamaha.

          9. Nike – in 1960s

          Crush Adidas.

            10. Philip Morris – in 1950s

            Knock off RJR as the number one tobacco  company in the world.

            Role Model Vision Statements – using another company as an example:

            11. Stanford University – in the past

            To become the Harvard of the West.

            12. Reach for Success – in the past

            To become the next Tony Robbins in self development.

            Internal Transformations vision statements:

            13. Apple

            To produce high-quality, low cost, easy to use products that incorporate high technology for the individual.

            14. Giro Sport Design

            To make sure that riding is the best part of a great life.

            15. Tesla

            To accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

            16. Sony

            To be a company that inspires and fulfills your curiosity.

            17. Facebook

            To give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.

              Longer and more detailed vision statement:

              18. Walmart

              To give customers a wide assortment of their favorite products, Every Day Low Prices, guaranteed satisfaction, friendly service, convenient hours (24 hours, 7 days a week) and a great online shopping experience.

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              19. Coca Cola

              To achieve sustainable growth, we have established a vision with clear goals:

              Profit: Maximizing return to share owners while being mindful of our overall responsibilities.

              People: Being a great place to work where people are inspired to be the best they can be.

              Portfolio: Bringing to the world a portfolio of beverage brands that anticipate and satisfy peoples; desires and needs.

              Partners: Nurturing a winning network of partners and building mutual loyalty.

              Planet: Being a responsible global citizen that makes a difference.

                20. Heinz

                Our VISION, quite simply, is to be: “The World’s Premier Food Company, Offering Nutritious, Superior Tasting Foods To People Everywhere.” Being the premier food company does not mean being the biggest but it does mean being the best in terms of consumer value, customer service, employee talent, and consistent and predictable growth.

                The Bottom Line

                Remember, always keep your vision statement up-to-date to direct your company’s actions.

                Remember, once you reach your vision, it needs to be changed. General Motors overtook Ford as #1 automotive company in the world because once Ford’s goal was reached, they never updated it.

                Keep your vision statement alive and visibly in front of you, revisit it and let it help direct your actions and activities. This is the fun part: this is where you get to dream really big and allow your imagination to fly as high as you want.

                Don’t hold back, let your creative juices flow and give yourself permission to explore what is possible for your business.

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                To your success!

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