Adapting

Reading

Adrian Plass wrote briefly about his two rules of public speaking. I read them last night in the book “Seriously Funny” and loved their simplicity, here they are:

1) Never adapt

Simply: be yourself. Be who you are confident, well, being.

2) Always adapt

Be willing and ready to adjust what *you* want to say to meet the needs of the audience and where you are in that moment.

Contradiction

Perhaps more juxtaposition. That we deny the need to show ourselves off, and be willing to adapt – and serve – the audience.

I love how gloriously simple those two ideas are.

Doing 1 means you can focus more on 2 (and actually knowing what you’re talking about). If you’re not trying to pretend to be one of your heroes of presenting then you’re more likely to relax. As we’re in the moment, we’re more able to deliver a great talk.

Last year, on a company intranet, I asked people what was memorable about the last talk they heard. 90% of people who replied said it was the authenticity of the speaker that did it for them. A great place to start then – be yourself. Don’t wear a mask!

And the respect you show your audience – in your preparation of content, practicing your delivery and the permission you give yourself to adjust on-the-fly – all helps make your talk more compelling.

One more?

While there’s a few other thoughts I have, there one that I want to add to this couplet right now is “why”. When you have a positive idea of “why” you want to deliver a great talk and why your audience should care about the content then you’ll be focussed on the outcomes that work for both of you.

Be you so that authenticity is the – adapt how you tell your story to your audience, with your “why” as a way to navigate the flexibility. Easy…. ;->

What do you think of Adrian Plass’ two rules? What would be your “one more”?

Let’s explore

I’ll explore these ideas and loads more at my next workshop. 21 February will be a resource-packed day of looking at how stories work, why they matter and how you can tell them really well.

Find out more

Letting them know

A few months ago, I started on a wee journey (in case you hadn’t noticed); maybe I’d call it an experiment if I want to avoid the post-modern cliché.

What’s been happening? 

I’ve been talking more about helping people communicate their ideas in effective ways. About my desire to work with people help develop so they can create and deliver presentations that inspire and move people.

  • I will help people take their big ideas and bring them to life for others
  • I will help people use storytelling, humour and authenticity to get their ideas into their audiences heads so they take action
  • I will help people overcome that most-commons of fears; public speaking.

Remember why you’re doing it


Today I was reminded how much this stuff makes me come more alive. A friend was taking some pictures while I told people a few things about story and why it’s so brilliant for communicating ideas. He remarked that I came alive!

And so I’m reminded that we need to be alive to live. I realise again how much it means to me to see people given the tools to communicate great things well.

Tell people!

I’ve asked before for people’s help in spreading the word. And so I’m at it again. Only because I really believe the world needs people who can communicate well. I need to be better at this communication lark too, no doubt.

In less than a week I’ll be giving someone the chance to be at my next workshop for free. I’ve not run a competition before so if it’s your first time entering then that’s cool too!

Here’s the action:

Would you share this link with people you’re connected with? If you enter, you’ll get a unique url you can share. Each time you share it will boost the number of entries you get. Simple! 

You can be there too if you like – either book your own ticket or enter the competition.
Thanks for reading. And for sharing.

The choices we make – part one

“Yes” is a good word.

I like to think that my “yes” means just that. However, far to often I try and do too much which means that my commitment to being somewhere at a given time is either just-in-time or just missed.

Reflecting on my habits as a person-who-likes-to-keep-the-world-happy, the tendency to say “yes” too often is unhelpful at best and destructive at worst.

Continue reading “The choices we make – part one”

Point to where it hurts

I fell off my bike on Friday.

I got up again and pedalled on. No significant damage to the bike – or to me. The slow, steady fall was caused by me not noticing that the path was actually sludge and not tarmac at a given point I was overtaking a pedestrian (it was a shared-use path).

Getting back on the bike was important (mainly as I was 10 miles from home). But also to keep things that were tender moving – and prevent something seizing up.  Continue reading “Point to where it hurts”

I had something in my eye

Last week I sent some emails to people on my lists – friend, contacts and people who had downloaded the Guide I published a few weeks before. It was another milestone for me and one that I’m grateful to have reached.

You know how it feels when you take something from a bunch of ideas, tasks and noise in your head and wrestle into some kind of order and then make it happen. It’s soooo goooooood. But that wasn’t all. Continue reading “I had something in my eye”