Rank #1: How To Give A Speech Like A Wiz
Don E. Smith is widely known as “The Speech Wiz”. He is a leading expert, innovator and coach in speech and presentation skills to variety of clients including executives, entrepreneurs, subject matter experts, educators, every day people and professional speakers. Here are a few of the bullet points from this episode: Don has a methodical approach to communicating. How to structure your talk confuses a lot of people. You will get a bunch of neat little devices for structuring the talk. His favorite ted talk is from his Uncle Ted. But seriously… his real favorite is by Patty Maes and Pranav Mistry: Meet the SixthSense Interaction. Our call to arms asking you, the Road To TED listener, to tweet @monicalewinsky to be a guest. She just did an awesome TED talk and we want her as a guest. Find Don at the SpeechWiz.com Here's his real favorite TED Talk:
May 20 2015
Rank #2: Getting Over the Fear of Public Speaking
For some people, the idea of public speaking is like having major surgery on your favorite body part without anesthesia. If you're a listener of this podcast, I'm willing to bet there's a pretty good chance you are interested in public speaking. Of course, it's also possible Dino and I goaded you into listening. :-) Would You Rather Be Dead Than Speak In Front Of An Audience? If the idea of speaking in front of a small group of people scares you, imagine speaking in front of a few hundred people for a TED talk? If this is you, I'd like to introduce you to our guest in this episode of The Road To TED podcast; Kristen Kavenaugh. Kristen was in the US Naval Academy and the Marines. She has a Master in Social Work with an emphasis on Military Social Work from Southern California. She is the co-founder of the Military Acceptance Project; a social justice organization which promotes acceptance of LGBT service members and veterans. She was thrown into public speaking. As she gained momentum with her project, she ended up there by default. She didn't look to be a public speaker. Public speaking found her. Don't be nervous, be at their service. ~Snoop Dog John Bates, the friend of the show who had a spontaneous appearance in our inaugural episode, relayed this piece of Snoop Dog wisdom to Kristen Kavanaugh as he helped her prepare for her TEDx talk. Kristen is not a natural-born public speaker. In fact, the idea of even giving the talk terrified her. As a Marine, Kristen is all about facing her fears. And speaking terrifies her. Kristen had to learn how to conquer her fear in order to deliver a message that's greater than she. And that is a great way to get over your fear of speaking in public. Because at the end of the day, it's not about you, it's about the message you're compelled to deliver. Kristen gave her talk on October 5th in San Diego. When we interviewed her for the podcast, she was preparing for it. Here's how it turned out: Speaker Bootcamp One of the things Kristen did to prepare (or had to do, depending upon how you look at it), was to give her talk for a professional board of past speakers. These folks really know their stuff. She got some great feedback. So another big takeaway for those scared of speaking, find your own board who can critique you. You'll get some great real time feedback like Kristen and in the end be able to practice with a safety net. There is a number of other takeaways in this episode both Dino and I found incredibly valuable. We hope you will too. Connect with Kristen Follow Kristen on Twitter Kristen's blog Kristen's Military Acceptance Project Introducing Mackenzie This episode introduces our on air producer Mackenzie Labreqcue. Mackenzie, or Mac, as Dino affectionately calls, is a social media specialist in the pet industry, a speaker, and one smart cookie. She's helped us with the podcast from day one, and starting with this episode, we decided to bring her in as a full-time on-air personality. We think she ads a much-needed element of balance to the podcast, so please, everyone, make her feel at home. :-) Post-Interview Discussion After we finish up the interview, Dino, Mac, and I sped some time exchanging the lessons and takeaways from the conversation with our guest. This is a great way to cram a lot of learning in a very short amount of time. We hope you'll tell us your takeaways in the comments below. Here is the video of me losing my phone and video camera that I mentioned in this episode.
Nov 10 2013
Rank #3: How To Win Friends And Influence Your Way To Give A TED Talk
What We Learn Today In this, the 6th episode of The Road To TED podcast, we look at not only what it takes to give a great TED talk, but how to give a successful talk of any kind. Whether you are giving a talk to thousands or one person; trying to make a sale, land a job, give a talk to a local group or just make a new friend, the preparation and execution is the same. Our guest today is Maria Scileppi. She has spoken at Notre Dame, University of Oregan, Social Media Week and many other events, (inlcuding, of course, TEDx Venice Beach). Her TEDx talk, (which as of this publication has not yet been), was about connecting with people through art. Making Friends Every Day One of Maria's philosophies, which she has in common with many, if not all, of our guests, is to have something amazing to talk about. For one year, Maria set out to make one new friend every single day. Many became very close friends that she still has today. Not only did this connect her with many people, including the organizer of a TEDx event whom not only was the catalyst for getting her booked into a TEDx talk and someone she became great friends with, but it gave her a great topic for her future talk. As you'll hear when you listen to this episode, making the right connections means everything. And it all starts with a real life, face to face friendship. She embarked on this project in 2007, before social media became what it is today. Spending about an hour with each person, all of these new friends were acquired face to face and in person. Maria accomplished all this while working full time. On Sunday she planned her week looking for local networking events and Meetups. Knowing that having one thing in common is a great ice breaker, she looked for affinity groups. Maria's Philosophy Doing something interesting and being passionate about it is the real secret to becoming a great speaker. In other words, you speak because you have something to say not saying something because you want to speak. Her philosophy is simple yet powerful: Be excited about what you’re speaking about. Keep it short and to the point. Figure out the one thing you want people to be left with and think about. Know exactly why the audience should listen to this. Have only one theme through the talk and then make sure you are giving something to the audience. Make it about them. My Two Cents To me, being in the business of selling my company's offerings, this interview speaks to what it takes to be successful period. Every person who achieves great success does it on the backs of others. Success doesn't just happen in a vacuum. We are all lifted to success. Whether you want to make the sale or give a great talk, the principle of connecting with people in a real way is at the core. In this world where it's too easy to close ourselves off and learn about life through our friend's status updates, I found this episode to personally be quite profound. Maria's (Current) Favorite TED Talk Like many of us, Maria seems to have a new favorite talk each week. The week we spoke to her, this was he favorite: Maria's TEDx Talk As of this podcast publication, Maria's talk is not yet available for embedding. Please check back as we will add it here once available. #TheInsideJoke If you listened, you heard us having some fun with hashtags. This is the video that inspired this episode's tomfoolery. I posted it despite Dino's clear instruction not to #defiance... let's see how long it stays up here... # powertothepeople #lololololo Your Turn What was your big take away from this episode? At the end of each episode; Dino, Mackenzie and I discuss what we learned. Tell us in the comments below what you learned.
Nov 24 2013
Rank #4: How To Break The Ice With Your Audience
Dino first met Today's guest, Lori Cheek, at an event called Game Changer in NYC. Recently he found out Lori is reluctantly about to do a TEDx talk. You read it right; reluctantly. As in she's really not looking forward to doing it at all. So we had to have her on the show to explain herself. Lori is the founder of Cheekd which is essentially dating in reverse. You see a stranger who interests you and can give out a cheeked card. If the person is interested they can go to the online part of the service to take it to the next level. She was recently on the show Shark Tank. It was not a pleasant experience but still turned out to be a pretty positive one. She spoke at TEDx Fulton St in New York along with recent guest Mike Michalowicz. Here's Lori's TEDx talk Lori's favorite TED talk Want more Road To TED? Don't miss Road To TED Live 2014!!! Click here to learn more about it.
Jun 10 2014
Rank #5: Greatness Is Not Accidental
Our Guest Today Dr. Todd Dewett is a professional speaker, author and coach. He is also the author of the book The Little Black Book of Leadership. His series of Lynda courses on management and leadership is not to be missed. "Get Over Yourself" is the title of his TEDx in Dayton, Ohio where he is preparing to give his talk. Todd will be telling a story about how to get over yourself and become a real person so people will want to connect. Todd's talk isn't available for inclusion in this post at this time, but we plan to add it in as soon as it becomes available. The Short Talk Question I like to ask how people condense a talk into only a few minutes. His average talk is an hour to an hour and a half. First he gets the talk boiled down to its core locking in on the message. Then scripting it out and memorizing it. He had to be far more careful about being concise. He's a storyteller so being short is not what he typically does. Cutting out all the fluff and getting to the point is super important. The Most Important Part Of The Talk For Todd, it's the story that takes the center stage. But we asked for his take on other important elements of performing on stage. Things like: Visualization Stamina Power poses You'll have to listen to the podcast to get Todd's take on those elements. Once you have a message where it needs to be you have to figure out how to deliver it the best possible way you can. The non verbals used to get the message to the audience is as important, if not more, as the verbal. He decides exactly how he needs to stand and hold his body for a phrase. Todd thinks it is 51% of being successful up there. Want To Get Really Good At Speaking? It is very obvious when you listen to Todd that he's a naturally good speaker. But to become great he studied the greats. He watched countless talks by great speakers such as Bill Clinton. He watched how they varied things for effect among many other things. Then he would pick one of those variables and work on it the next time he was on stage. This is a continual process that he has done and will always do. It is true that great speakers stand on the shoulders of great speakers that came before them. For example, he developed his own hand gestures around Clinton's. But it became his own unique expression of that speaking variable. Get Even Better At Speaking Say yes to every possible talk you can. Speak everywhere. Lions clubs, church groups... virtually any place that will have you. Every great speaker who is getting paid to speak started out giving as many talks as they could. And not just paid but free. Todd spent years giving free talks; honing his craft. This is where you learn. Get Real Todd spent a lot of time trying to be the person he thought his audience would want. He dressed the part. He wore a jacket. Then one day, a close friend told him perhaps that makes you socially aware but you should show your tattoos. Todd asked why. Because people like real. This is a really important point. The proof is in the pudding. Todd's career took off after he became who he really is. This, however, doesn't necessarily mean everyone should go out and do this. Todd even acknowledged being real comes with risk. At the end of the day, what makes it all work is the message. When you walk on the stage, no matter how you look, you have to earn the audiences respect. What comes out of your mouth, more than how you look, is what will truly win the day. What's Really Scary People will respond to their perception of confidence. When you have more confidence than those around you, they will buy in to what you're saying or doing. This speaks volumes to just how important it is to become great at speaking. One of Dino's secrets are to walk up to people at events and ask them if they're having a good time, almost as if he is
Dec 01 2013
Rank #6: I’ve Found The World’s Best TED Talk
Our guest in today's podcast is Mike Michalowicz (pronounced mi-KAL-o-witz for all you people who like pronouncing things right). He is the entrepreneur behind three multi-million dollar companies and the author of The Pumpkin Plan and the business cult classic, The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur. With a popular, quirky website MikeMichalowicz.com, he is a globally recognized entrepreneurial advocate. Mike is a former small business columnist for the Wall Street Journal, and now hosts the business make-over segment on MSNBC’s Your Business. And that bit, by the way, was pulled verbatim from his speaker page. Firstly because I am lazy and if I could pull the entire blog post from somewhere without getting slapped with a cease and desist I would. But more importantly, and seriously, he has an AWESOME speaker resource page. If you are a speaker or want to be one, (if you don't want to be a speaker you probably took that wrong turn in Albuquerque), you need to check out the resources he has put together for interviews and speaking gigs. I am writing this pre-interview so I am not 100%, but willing to bet this process gets him more talks than if he didn't have it. Mike's third book, Profit And Loss is due out this month. Make sure to check out his website here. Mike is a real pro as you will see in his talk embedded below titled: "The World's Best". This talk is a great use of story, lively and electric. Mike is truly a great speaker and we're glad to have him as our guest today. Enjoy the podcast!
Jun 05 2014
Rank #7: Anatomy of the Prototypical TED Speaker
Tell A Story What do all TED speakers have in common? What do all great speeches have in common? Sarah Fretwell embodies what a great speaker does. A great speaker tells a story. The story is never self serving. It's always a message the speaker was compelled to deliver. Sarah is not only a prototypical TED speaker, but she is also the prototypical Road To TED guest. We caught her in throws of preparation for her TEDx SkidRow performance. I believe we've captured the anxiety, the nervousness, and the excitement that's inherent in being only weeks away from delivering the most important talk of her life. The Challenge Putting together a show like ours can present challenges. The biggest challenge of all; to make it engaging, valuable and interesting for the listener. So much so, that they are riveted to everything we say. When you can grab the reader or listener in a way that tunes everything else out in our noisy world, you’re doing it right. One of the many ways the best shows do this by following a format. So the first thing Dino and I did when we set out to co-host Road To TED was to create a format. Now of course, we also wanted it to be a loose format that we could have some fun with. But make no mistakes, this show has a format to it. The main component is that each episode is an interview with a future or past TEDx speaker. And the topic of the interview will be their journey to their talk. Our goal is not to study our guest’s topics, but how to become a better speaker. So what we want to talk to them about is public speaking. How This Episode Almost Went Bad So it’s quite interesting to see how we, or more accurately I, derailed this episode and broke from our format. It is actually quite instructive. At first I was mad at myself for letting it happen. But after listening again to the interview, I realized how this was actually a hidden gem of a lesson on public speaking. But First... Before I go into the details of the story, first let me tell you about our guest. Sarah Fretwell gave her talk at TEDx Skid Row in Los Angeles on September 8th, 2013. The talk titled “The Truth Told – Unreasonable Activism – A Jounrey Into The Democratic Republic Of Congo”. This was a call to action for Sarah, an award winning photographer, that literally came to her in a dream. She went to the Congo to document the rape of young women in the war torn Democratic Republic of Congo. What happened then was a call to activism for Sarah. As you can hear, she is an incredible advocate for helping these women. Her story and talk will tug at your heart strings as it did mine. In this episode we open strong asking her several questions about her speaking experience. As she was answering, I was messaging Dino over Skype that I wanted to ask her about her talk topic. So I took the interview completely off topic and broke our format. But it was great. But It Was The Perfect Lesson On Public Speaking I was pulled in by the story of what she was doing. I had heard enough about the topic that it peaked my interest and I had to know more. I found her passion for it to be almost hypnotic. Plus, this topic just struck a chord with me. I have always been a cause guy. I am a pretty easy mark to be pulled into a charity or public service group. I was a member of a Rotary club working on clean water projects around the globe. I volunteered my time helping kids with many different issues. I volunteered for the March Of Dimes, a senior care organization, just to list a few. What I have never done, however, is completely immerse myself in a cause. And I think part of me regrets that and wants to. So Sarah’s story, her talk topic, intrigued me. And that is the big lesson for me. Sarah is indeed the prototypical TED speaker. She isn’t there talking about herself. She has a cause that is bigger than her. Her passion and enthusia
Oct 31 2013
Rank #8: How Joel Comm Prepares For A TEDx Talk
Joel Comm is a New York Times best-selling author, serial entrepreneur, consultant and speaker. His latest book is Twitter Power 3.0 and he also has a free book available at Social Poetry Book. Hear our interview with Joel here on iTunes or Stitcher Radio. A seasoned speaker, Joel is preparing to give his first TEDx talk at TEDx Mile High as we recorded this episode. We will embed the talk here once it is available. What We Asked Joel Here's the questions Joel answered on this episode of Road To TED: If he gets nervous when speaking If he considers himself a born speaker The theme of the event and what his talk is about Early lessons learned on public speaking Advice he has on storytelling How he got invited to speak at this TEDx event (not at all what we expected) What he is doing to prepare for his talk How he rehearses it How he creates so much content What positive outcomes he expects to come out of his talk How he networks and crosses from tribe to tribe It Happened! Joel's talk was this past Saturday, June 13th. We were lucky enough to talk to him while he was preparing. It was a great experience for us and we're excited to see his talk once it's available on video. Check back... we'll embed it right here when it's ready. Until then, follow Joel on Youtube, Twitter @JoelComm and Facebook to see what he's up to. And read all about his adventures at TEDx on his blog here. Joel's Favorite TED Talk Make sure to help spread the word about Road To TED by leaving a review over on iTunes and/or Stitcher. We would very much appreciate it!
Jun 16 2015
Rank #9: RTT – Dorie Clark | Finding your breakthrough idea @dorieclark
Dorie Clark is a marketing strategy consultant, professional speaker, and frequent contributor to the Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Entrepreneur, and the World Economic Forum blog. Recognized as a “branding expert” by the Associated Press, Fortune, and Inc. magazine, she is the author of Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future (Harvard Business Review Press, 2013), which has been translated into Russian, Chinese, Arabic, French, Polish, and Thai. Her next book, Stand Out: How to Find Your Breakthrough Idea and Build a Following Around It, was released by Portfolio/Penguin in April 2015. Learn more about Dorie on her website DorieClark.com Dorie's Favorite TED Talk
May 07 2015
Rank #10: The Epiphany That Makes Your Talk TED Worthy
What does eating bugs have to do with a great TED talk? Only everything. Our guest, Chris "Shoots" Veis, shares his insights into how to put an amazing TED talk together. He recently gave his TEDx talk called A Silent Killer Of Change at TEDx Billings. A student of politics since high school, Shoots obsessively followed politicians and their campaigns, and even took the plunge into politics by running for city council. The take-aways As you'll hear, Dino and I got a lot of insight from speaking to Shoots. Here's a glimpse at the key points: Acting can help you get used to being on stage in front of an audience. Be prepared to be able to explain your TEDx topic in under 2 minutes. Very interesting to hear the pitch Shoots did to land his talk. What example can you give that will crystallize the talk in a person's mind? For Shoots, it was the insect diet. What makes a great TED talk is a strong and irresistible hook. Comparing the insect diet to change was a great hook. His favorite talk His Talk
May 04 2014