This is an AI generated transcript so please forgive any errors and spelling mistakes. 

Are you about to speak at a conference or a summit or any sort of large event? it so then this video is for you.

Hi, my name is Shola Kaye. I’m a public speaking coach, a professional performer, and also a professional keynote speaker. And I’m based in London. But today I am speaking from Hyderabad, India. And I’m here to give a run a workshop in a few days time. So I’m taking advantage of this opportunity to get in a few recordings.

Last week, I was a conference chair at a big event in London, which was called the women in law summit. And as conference chair, you are lucky enough to hear multiple speeches in a day.

And so I sat in the stream where I was, I was the chair, and I heard nine presenters do their bits in a single day. And it was fascinating not only from the perspective of hearing all the speakers and hearing the content they had to share, but also from the perspective of looking at who did really well, who was engaging, and then who perhaps could have done with a few speaking tips beforehand.

So I thought I’d come away from there and share some of the lessons that I picked up some of the things that I observed, so that if you have to go and speak at a conference, then you are really armed with all the knowledge that you need to do a great job. So I’m going to split the these tips into two separate videos. And I’ll share three tips per video. So this is the first of two.

Public speaking – get to the point!

My first tip is if you all being brought in to speak at a conference, then number one thing get on with it. Okay, there were a number of people who beat around the bush quite a lot at the beginning of their presentation, and didn’t really get into the meat of things until good 50% of the way into the talk. And these talks are all 30 minutes left at length, I think maybe 25. And then five minutes of q&a actually.

So 25 minutes isn’t a lot of time to tell everybody your entire CV to give people some really great tips they can take away and learn from if not a huge amount of time.

So you’ve got to use that time wisely and be very audience focused. So instead of it being 20 minutes of my background, and then five minutes of here’s what I learned, here’s what you can take away, get into that meet early on. And make sure that you’re sharing your top tips all the way through the presentation, and not expecting people to delay that gratification. And then just copy down a couple of bits and pieces at the very end, having listened to maybe 20 minutes of information that might be interesting, but not really directly relevant to them. So that’s my number one tip, get on with it. Okay, think about what is the most important thing, what are the biggest tips that you’re sharing, and make sure they don’t get saved until the very end, that they you’re telling people those good things up front.

Don’t save the best til last – you might get cut off when public speaking at a conference

Now, the second tip, which is very much related to that, which is don’t say the best til last.

That tip comes from hearing a few speakers who unfortunately had to maybe cut their talks a little bit shorter. Because there were so many things going on at the conference and things weren’t running to time. And as a result of that they didn’t get to share their main points with the audience. So don’t share the best to last.

Now at this particular conference, there were six different streams. What that means is at any moment, that was six things going on six different talks and presentations. The idea is that in each stream, each talk ends at the same time as all the talks going on elsewhere. so that people can mix and match, they can go from stream one, which might be about starting out in your career. They might want to hear a talk that ends at 930. And then they might want to pop up to stream three, where there might be a workshop on something. So they everybody gets to go to all the things that they want to go to. They get to go to the top event that’s taking place at a particular time. So the idea is that every single talk ends at the same time. But with things being as they are, quite often, not all the talks get underway at exactly the same moment. And that means that sometimes people get caught a little bit short.

It’s a lot of traffic here in Hyderabad, I hope you can’t hear all this beeping of the horns, I’ve got the most way right
outside my hotel. Goodness me. Anyway, that’s carry on. So the problem is that you’ve got to be ready to pumps, local fire five, or even sometimes 10 minutes of your talk. And if that’s the case, and you’ve saved all the good stuff until the very end, then it’s not good for you because you’re frustrated that you didn’t get your best points heard. And it’s not good for the audience, because they’re wondering, well, what’s holding the say, where’s the value in that presentation. And they’re not aware that all the good stuff was coming at the end. So don’t do that. Don’t say the good until the end, make sure that you actually intersperse or mix the good stuff all the way through your presentation. So that even if you do have to cut off a couple of minutes from the end, you know that you’ve served the audience, you’ve told them all the interesting things that you needed to share, or at least most of them, and the audience is satisfied as well.

Public speaking – remember to be engaging when speaking at a conference

Now the third point that I want to share in this particular video is around being engaging. The just because you’ve only got 2530 minutes to speak, it doesn’t mean that you can’t engage the audience. It doesn’t mean you can’t ask them to put their hands up, you can’t ask them to give you the answers to a couple of questions. You can’t do call them response. You It doesn’t mean you can’t do any sort of interactive exercises.

Now one of the talks that went down the most, the best that I say in my stream was somebody who was talking about business networking. And she introduced a couple of very short exercises for people to try. Even though she only had half an hour, she gave us two points of interaction where we had to share with a partner and talk to people around ourselves.

And every time you do something like that, the energy in the room shoots up, because people love talking about themselves. And in fact, dopamine, the neurotransmitter of reward is released when we talk about ourselves. So you’re actually benefiting the audience, not only in making them feel good, but also in getting them to interact with your content. So even if you’ve got a very small amount of time to speak, it doesn’t matter. You can still add interaction. It’s good for the audience. And it’s good for you.

So those are my three top tips in this first of two videos on how to ace speaking at a conference.

Public speaking: Ace that conference – Summary

And the first one is to get on with it. Don’t beat around the bush, don’t sort of stack all the good stuff towards the end of your presentation. Get on with it. And don’t make your introduction too long. Because you might find that your hotel gives an introduction, and then it’s over, right.

The second tip is don’t leave the best to last. Also things happen at conferences, sometimes you get cut off, sometimes you have to cut your speech a little bit shorter, so don’t leave the best to last.

And then finally, be engaging. Just because you’ve only got a short amount of time to speak, don’t feel that means that you’ve got to carry the burden of the whole presentation on your shoulders, and that you can’t engage and interact with the audience. That’s it for me. And I hope you found those tips useful. If you did look out for the second video in this series about how to ace conference speaking. And if you do have to speak at a conference, maybe you work for corporate and you need a trainer to come in and provide you with some tips and some live training.

So please let me know. Or if you’re a business person, you’re self employed, and you need to speak at a conference or you need to speak to grow your business, then I can help you with that. So please do get in touch. Take care at Ace your conference.


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