"Duck and Cover" won't help

In the years following World War 2, the threat of nuclear war hung over the world. As the United States and its allies faced the Soviet Union and its allies, a Third World War was a distinct possibility. Given the looming threat, in the 1950s, the American Government produced a civil defence film entitled Duck and […]

How to handle public speaking nerves

El Capitan

On 3 June 2017, professional rock climber Alex Honnold accomplished something that few people thought could be done. He climbed the 3,000-foot granite wall of Yosemite Park’s famous El Capitan, the vertical wall in the photo above. Alone. Without ropes or any other safety apparatus. (Yes, you read that correctly.)This achievement has been celebrated as […]

Gamification can help overcome public speaking nerves

RHETORIC - Public speaking gamification

Gamification is serious business. I have written before about Rhetoric – The Public Speaking Game™, the board game and app that Florian Mueck and I co-created. You can read recent posts here and here. Recently, I was interviewed about the game on Dukascopy Swiss Financial TV. My interview with Jack Everitt below. While discussing the RHETORIC, […]

The Public Speaking Fear Grid

The public speaking fear grid

Public speaking fear is well known. As Jerry Seinfeld has said, “According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two! This means, to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.” Even those who are not […]

Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 237) – Adele

Adele

“I’m scared of audiences. I get shitty scared. One show in Amsterdam, I was so nervous I escaped out the fire exit. I’ve thrown up a couple of times. Once in Brussels, I projectile-vomited on someone. I just gotta bear it. … “My nerves don’t really settle until I’m offstage. I mean, the thought of […]

A Musical Way to Beat Stage Fright

Stage fright and music

Stage fright! You have to speak in front of an audience. Perhaps you know the people, perhaps you don’t. Perhaps it’s a big audience, maybe it’s not. It doesn’t matter, because all of a sudden, the heart beats faster, the palms get sweaty, the butterflies start bouncing around in your stomach, the throat dries up. […]

Five Lessons from Michael Bay's "Meltdown"

Explosion Sign

Michael Bay is an American film producer and director. He is best known for big budget action-packed, blow-’em-up movies like Armageddon, The Rock, Pearl Harbor and Transformers. In 2014, Bay spoke—briefly—at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. While nothing blew up, many are calling Bay’s performance a meltdown. He was invited on stage […]

Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 154) – Dale Carnegie

Dale Carnegie

“Students of public speaking continually ask, ‘How can I overcome self-consciousness and the fear that paralyzes me before an audience?’ “Did you ever notice in looking from a train window that some horses feed near the track and never even pause to look up at the thundering cars, while just ahead at the next railroad crossing a farmer’s wife will […]

Public Speaking: Taking That First Step

Toronto City Hall

This summer, my family and I returned to Canada for a vacation. While we were in Toronto, I followed the debate that was raging (and which continues to rage as of the date of this post) about closing public libraries to reduce municipal government costs. Toronto City Hall Public hearings were held to discuss the […]

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Testimonials

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.

Karsta Goetze

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.

Andy Yen

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.

David Lindelöf

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.

Thuy Khoc-Bilon

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!

Sara Canna

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.

Thomas Scott

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!"

Jon Lopez

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!

Henning Dehler

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.

Eric Thuillard

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.

Diego Brait

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!

Guadalupe Garcia

Senior Director and Talent Partner, ADP International