TweetHave you thought about becoming a professional speaker–speaking as a way to share your expertise, or your inspiration?
Perhaps you are a Toastmaster and have wondered how being a professional speaker is different than being a Toastmaster.
If you want to become a professional speaker, Toastmasters offers a great way to gain some skill and confidence.
If you are both a professional speaker and a Toastmaster, I’d love to hear what you agree with, disagree with, or would like to add!
This entry was posted in professional speaking, Public speaking, public speaking delivery skills, Toastmasters and tagged Professional Speaking, Toastmasters, Toastmasters vs. One subtle, yet powerful, way you can engage your audience is to speak to the individuals in your audience.
Click here for further explanation and demonstration of the Hallway Test by Craig Valentine, 1999 World Champion of Public Speaking.
At a recent Toastmaster contest, a young man told a story from his childhood, one in which he was left home alone one day while his mother, a single parent, went to work.  My heart went out to him. When the winners of the contest were announced, he didn’t win, but several supporters congratulated him on his second place finish. Later, at the end of the contest, guests were invited to speak and one of the young man’s supporters stood up.  It was his father.  What?  He had said in his speech that his mother was a single parent? When telling a story about your life, keep it real, at least in the essential aspects.  Speak the “emotional truth” says Darren LaCroix, the 2001 Toastmasters World Champion. For a little more on “condensing” elements of your speech, but sticking to the “emotional truth” see this blog post from Craig Valentine, the 1999 Toastmaster World Champion.


It’s one thing to tell a story about your childhood where you condense some events, or change minor details, but to completely fabricate a story?  Well, that’s a good way to lose the trust of your audience. The lowly Post-It note can help you plan a more powerful presentation, especially if you are  presenting with PowerPoint. The photo above is a picture of my Post-It note planning for a webinar on PowerPoint that I’ll be doing for Executive Women International on April 9. Planning out the points and flow can keep you from getting too bogged down in details too soon.
Have you ever wondered whether to tell a story because you were concerned that the language or subject matter might be offensive or “politically incorrect”?
Ironically, as I was considering that very issue as I am preparing a presentation for an Iranian audience, I happened to check the reviews for the very first book I published, Small Talk Big Results. I didn’t write the end to that story in the book, but what happened later that day was that Robbie died, having choked on the bread. This entry was posted in Business Storytelling, Public speaking and tagged authenticity, offensive language, politically correct, politically incorrect, politically incorrect speech by Diane Windingland. Following up on last week’s Killer Keynote Speech Structure Post, is another speech structure, the Business Proposal Speech. An effective business proposal presentation structure takes your client from pain to pleasure on your proposed path. This entry was posted in Public speaking and tagged business speech, business speech structure, proposal speech, speech structure, speech writing by Diane Windingland.
Memorization.  The pinnacle of speaking for Toastmasters is the annual World Championship of Public Speaking, in which contestants give 5-7 minute memorized speeches (often with carefully practiced gestures and pauses).


Visit PowerTalk Toastmasters, the club for professional and aspiring professional speakers. Having to scroll and scroll and scroll to get through other newsletters, often times means I don't read them at all. Remember it’s not all about you, but do let the audience get to know you and your personality. End with the most important thought—if they remember nothing else, they should remember this. Even if you aren’t using PowerPoint, the little sticky notes can help you brainstorm and organize the flow of your presentation (Post-It Note Speech Planning). So, now I wonder, if I were to tell THAT story, could I even say the word “nigger” as part of my authentic story?
Professional speakers may also use more filler words (ah, uh, you know) than seasoned Toastmasters, due to Toastmasters focus on elimination of filler words.
It was the beginning of a true story, a story which I used to illustrate the point that you don’t have to give all the details of a story in order for people to form a picture in their minds.
I was profoundly moved by his death and by my realization, at 11, that he was as deserving of love and respect as anyone else. But if I have to worry about being politically correct then I become boring and bland and a little part of me dies.



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