The Easiest New Year’s Resolution To Keep: Improving Public Speaking Skills

It is January 1 and that means it is time for all sorts of lofty self-improvement goals: lose 20 pounds, read all the classics, exercise an hour a day, write a great novel, etc. The two things those all have in common are that they are hard to do and most of us will never do them.

That’s why I’d like to suggest a different resolution for the year: become an excellent public speaker. This goal takes a lot less will power than losing 20 pounds of unsightly blubber. And it takes a lot less time than an hour at the gym daily.

If you’d like to become a better public speaker in 2015, all you have to do is follow these 5 steps before every presentation, speech or PowerPoint talk you give.

  1. Narrow the number of points you are trying to communicate down to 5.
  2. Come up with a story for each point involving an actual conversation with a real client, customer or colleague about a real problem and how it was resolved.
  3. Come up with a visual (a picture or image, NOT text) for each message point.
  4. Practice your speech on video and watch it.
  5. Keep practicing your speech on video and watching it until you like how and what you are communicating.

It really is that simple. No, I’m not peddling some snake oil law of attraction where you just visualize the mansion you want to live in and it will come to you. I’m not asking you to visualize a great speech and hope that it happens. I’m asking you to actually practice your speech and actually see it with your own eyes when you look at the video. If you follow these five simple steps, I guarantee you will become an excellent public speaker and presenter in 2015.

If you want more help becoming a better speaker or media communicator in 2015, please call me at 212.764.4955. TJ Walker


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