You’re a Top Public Speaker? Well, It’s Time to Start Getting Risky

This post is for the professional Public Speaker

Public Speaking is About Risk-taking

Just like diving off the high tower diving board into a bucket of water. If we miss, we feel it.

Over time, the more we perform the action, the bigger the bucket seems.

Eventually, we feel safe and we feel that we know what we are doing. The landing never misses.

That’s when we need to start taking more risks.

The Established Speaker

The proficient Speaker starts to fit a template. The presentation is slick, interactive and polished. The Q and A sessions are handled well. The plaudits are welcome.

It’s Time to Start Getting Risky

This is the opportunity to expand our business and be in demand. We need to move to elite – fewer engagements, charge more.

We need to:

  • Break the mould
  • Disrupt the pattern
  • Challenge ourself

Reconsider every aspect of what we do now.

Try These Risks

  • Is there a way you can get a bigger ‘wow’ with the opener? (I saw one speaker arrive on stage on his pushbike, park it stage right and never refer to it in the whole presentation)
  • Consider outsized props (Check out Jim Carrey’s Commencement Speech where he showed off his storey-high luminous painting to the audience?)
  • Can the format be changed completely? (I’ve always had an admiration of Geoffrey Robertson’s ‘Hypothetical’ TV Series, using the audience to reenact the topic.)

Risks are risky and will seem to damage our established ‘brand’. But, if I recall, that’s how it all started – by taking risks.