- Public speaking is a learned skill, not an innate gift; everyone can improve.
- Communication is a rules-based transaction that conveys meaning to another via verbal and / or non-verbal behavior.
- Fidelity (i.e. clarity and accuracy) is the goal of most strategic communication.
- The most effective strategic communicators focus on the 3 C’s: delivering content that is Confident, Compelling, and Connected.
- The most effective strategic communicators engage in transactional communication (with the audience) and meta communication (with one’s self) simultaneously, making realtime adjustments as needed.
- A personalized Anxiety Management Plan (AMP) is a useful tool for overcoming speaking anxiety.
optional exercises for further reflection and practice
- Steve Jobs’ 1978 interview and 2007 launch event
- Bill Clinton’s 1988 DNC speech and 2012 DNC speech
- Oprah Winfrey’s 2018 Golden Globes speech (annotated)
- “Your Body Language May Shape Who You Are” by Amy Cuddy (Ted)
- “How to Make Stress Your Friend” by Kelly McGonigal (Ted)
- “The Science of Stage Fright and How to Overcome it” by Mikael Cho (Ted)
- “Three Quick Tips for Staying Calm Under Pressure” by Dr. Radha Modgil (BBC)
- “No Freaking Speaking: Managing Public Speaking Anxiety” by Matt Abrahams (GSB)
- Practice power posing for two minutes each day this week.
- Review and practice visualization techniques before public speaking.
- Download Headspace or a similar app to be more calm and grounded while speaking.
- Record yourself on video delivering a 90-second impromptu talk in response to the question, “What’s the best thing you did between college and business school?” Don’t think too long about the question. Watch the video and see what you observe about yourself as a speaker.
Build Your Checklist
this list grows throughout the academic quarter
- Create my Anxiety Management Plan (AMP) and use when speaking publicly