This morning, I helped a French speaker develop confidence in his public speaking. I told him to find a speech that he liked and to speak it in French. He chose the speech by Dominique de Villepin, a speech that was delivered at the UN Security Council on 14 February 2003 against the war in Iraq….

Yesterday, I met up with the author of The Lightless Sky: An Afghan Refugee Boy’s Journey of Escape to A New Life in Britain who gave his first TEDx talk in 2014. Gulwali Passarlay is a 21-year-old man in his final year in Politics at the University of Manchester. We met two years ago on campus when I returned from Afghanistan as…

In a classic psychological experiment in the 1944, Fritz Heider and Marianne Simmel made a short film comprising three geometrical shapes moving in different speeds and various directions. There were a large triangle, a small triangle, and a circle moving in and out of a rectangle with an opening. Observers reported the movements of these…

Stories still seem fluffy to some leaders. With their bias towards numbers, charts, and graphs to predict trends for the next quarter, leaders prefer data which can be quantified (understandably so) – because they sound most palatable to shareholders. Numbers almost, always, sound credible and certain. However, numbers are statisticians’ ways of interpreting data. It…

No one can prepare for a crisis in an organisation or in a country. But when a crisis does occur, how a leader shows up – or fails to do so – during the first hour can shape public opinion forever. Take a look at these real examples: When mainstream media report about train disruptions…

In his speech to students from Yale (watch video by Goalcast here), Tom Hanks uses a story very much like a parable. Instead of focusing on the content and content delivery, this post breaks down the elements for your immediate application: [1 + 3]= U In this story, the classic elements are: 1. A Wise One. That’s…

When Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton praised Nancy Reagan on 11 March 2016 during the funeral, it sparked a dramatic backlash for unverfied facts and untruths. Here’s what Clinton said in an interview with MSNBC at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, about the late former first lady: “It may be hard…

Recently, a friend messaged me and asked if I knew any resources to teach public speaking to primary school children. She then clarified the question and asked how they should craft a good speech. In this video, I gave two quick tips. Here on this blog, I would add deeper reflections with more real life examples….

  “I don’t know how to motivate others.” “What should I say to inspire my team?” “I have run out of ideas and I don’t think my life is that inspiring.” Well, my dear colleague, you are not alone. Inspiring and motivating others through speech is not easy, but it’s also not that difficult. You…

Opening and closing a speech is the hardest thing to do. Because people remember you based on first and last impressions, what you say in the first and last twenty seconds will ‘make’ or ‘break’ your reputation as a speaker. If you get the last bit right, what you say at the end will most…

© 2010 | EDMUND CHOW

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