John delivered a keynote address about the importance of public speaking to 80 senior members of Gore’s Medical Device Europe team at an important sales event. He was informative, engaging and inspirational. Everyone was motivated to improve their public speaking skills. Following his keynote, John has led public speaking workshops for Gore in Barcelona and Munich. He is an outstanding speaker who thinks carefully about the needs of his audience well before he steps on stage.
TA Leader, Gore and Associates
I first got in touch with John while preparing to speak at TED Global about my work on ProtonMail. John helped me to sharpen the presentation and get on point faster, making the talk more focused and impactful. My speech was very well received, has since reached almost 1.8 million people and was successful in explaining a complex subject (email encryption) to a general audience.
CEO, Proton Technologies
John gave the opening keynote on the second day of our unit’s recent offsite in Geneva, addressing an audience of 100+ attendees with a wealth of tips and techniques to deliver powerful, memorable presentations. I applied some of these techniques the very next week in an internal presentation, and I’ve been asked to give that presentation again to senior management, which has NEVER happened before. John is one of the greatest speakers I know and I can recommend his services without reservation.
Senior Data Scientist, Expedia Group
After a morning of team building activities using improvisation as the conduit, John came on stage to close the staff event which was organised in Chamonix, France. His energy and presence were immediately felt by all the members of staff. The work put into the preparation of his speech was evident and by sharing some his own stories, he was able to conduct a closing inspirational speech which was relevant, powerful and impactful for all at IRU. The whole team left feeling engaged and motivated to tackle the 2019 objectives ahead. Thank you, John.
Umberto de Pretto
Secretary General, World Road Transport Organization
I was expecting a few speaking tips and tricks and a few fun exercises, but you went above and beyond – and sideways. You taught me to stand tall. You taught me to anchor myself. You taught me to breathe. You taught me to open up. You taught me to look people in the eye. You taught me to tell the truth. You taught me to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. I got more than I bargained for in the best possible way.
World Cancer Day Campaign Manager, Union for International Cancer Control
John gave a brilliant presentation on public speaking during the UN EMERGE programme in Geneva (a two days workshop on leadership development for a group of female staff members working in the UN organizations in Geneva). His talk was inspirational and practical, thanks to the many techniques and tips he shared with the audience. His teaching can dramatically change our public speaking performance and enable us as presenters to have a real and powerful impact. Thank you, John, for your great contribution!
HR Specialist, World Health Organization
John is a genuine communication innovator. His seminars on gamification of public speaking learning and his interactive Rhetoric game at our conference set the tone for change and improvement in our organisation. The quality of his input, the impact he made with his audience and his effortlessly engaging style made it easy to get on board with his core messages and won over some delegates who were extremely skeptical as to the efficacy of games for learning. I simply cannot recommend him highly enough.
National Education Director, Association of Speakers Clubs UK
John joined our Global Sales Meeting in Segovia, Spain and we all participated in his "Improv(e) your Work!" session. I say “all” because it really was all interactive, participatory, learning and enjoyable. The session surprised everybody and was a fresh-air activity that brought a lot of self-reflection and insights to improve trust and confidence in each other inside our team. It´s all about communication and a good manner of speaking!"
General Manager Europe, Hayward Industries
Thank you very much for the excellent presentation skills session. The feedback I received was very positive. Everyone enjoyed the good mix of listening to your speech, co-developing a concrete take-away and the personal learning experience. We all feel more devoted to the task ahead, more able to succeed and an elevated team spirit. Delivering this in a short time, both in session and in preparation, is outstanding!
CFO European Dairy Supply Chain & Operations, Danone
Thanks to John’s excellent workshop, I have learned many important tips and techniques to become an effective public speaker. John is a fantastic speaker and teacher, with extensive knowledge of the field. His workshop was a great experience and has proven extremely useful for me in my professional and personal life.
Senior Sales Manager, Sunrise Communications
John’s presentation skills training was a terrific investment of my time. I increased my skills in this important area and feel more comfortable when speaking to an audience. John provided the right mix between theory and practice.
Director of the Jura Region, BKW Energie AG
Be BOLD. Those two words got stuck in my head and in the heads of all those ADP leaders and associates that had the privilege to see John on stage. He was our keynote speaker at our annual convention in Barcelona, and his message still remains! John puts his heart in every word. Few speakers are so credible, humble and yet super strong with large audiences!
Senior Director and Talent Partner, ADP International
This is one of my all-time favorite quotes, John, and use it often. However, it is inaccurately attributed to Maya Angelou. Yes, she said it but its original source seems to be an American man named Carl Buehner.
Hi Celeste. Thanks for the note and the keen eye. In fact, I had already attributed the quote to Carl Buehner*. See this post from 2012. The quote by Maya Angelou is different in that she has added the phrase, “people will forget what you did”. Of course, the quote is really just an expansion on Buehner’s original. For an interesting read on the history of the quote, check out this post on Quote Investigator.
*Interestingly, I discovered in the above-mentioned post by Quote Investigator that Buehner’s last name was wrongly transcribed as “Buechner” or “Buchner” and that those incorrect transcriptions have actually stuck in many instances. In fact, when I discovered Buehner’s quote, it was attributed to “Buechner” and I noted it down as such in my earlier post.
While I like this quote a lot, indeed use it in my presentation, my biggest take away, and a point I make in my presentation is that “This Is Biology. Repeat. This is Biology”. While presenting, if we ignore this reality/biology, we do so at our own peril. If material (rational content) is delivered without an accompanying emotional exchange between speaker and audience, it will likely be forgotten; i.e., not remembered.
This insight fundamentally changed my approach to speechcraft.
Thanks, Rashid. You are right. A speech that is only focused on facts will not be as powerful as one that also has emotional appeal. Aristotle knew this thousands of years ago when he wrote “Rhetoric”. He said that a good speech is built on three pillars or, as he called them, the three persuasive appeals: logos (the logic of what is being said); ethos (the reputation and trustworthiness of the speaker); and pathos (the emotion).