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Praise for The Truth About Confident Presenting
"O'Rourke goes beyond the typical list of speaking tips and packs a lot of wisdom into his 51 truths. He explains the critical link between the content of a speech and its ultimate effectiveness, illuminating the powerful connection between preparation and performance. Speakers who follow his winning formula are sure to find a grateful audience."
R. Jeep Bryant, Executive Vice President, Chief Communications Officer, The Bank of New York Mellon
"From strategy to tactics, the 51 common-sense 'truths' in this book are useful, practical, and easy to adapt. Even reading just a few chapters will help to make you a better speaker. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to the executive speakers I work with."
Jan Botz, Executive Director, Chief Communications Officer, Dow Corning Corporation
“Whether you are speaking to a large audience, your boss, your employees, or your kids, you will feel more confident and prepared, and be far more effective, after reading this book. O’Rourke provides simple, doable tips that really make a difference. From caring to preparing, you’ll learn what it takes to engage your audience and make your message count!"
Patty Blackburn, Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, RSM McGladrey, Inc.
“The Truth About Confident Presenting is an excellent, practical guide for anyone who aspires to deliver effective and engaging presentations. It is a valuable resource for the novice as well as veteran speakers.”
Catherine V. Babington, Vice President, Public Affairs, Abbott Laboratories
“Years of successful presentation experience condensed into an easily digestible but invaluable checklist for anyone wishing to channel natural anxiety over public speaking into improving their presentation skills. Filled with real-world examples and anecdotes, O’Rourke focuses on the essentials of great presenting.”
Tim Andree, Chief Executive Officer, Dentsu America
All you need to know to make winning presentations--fearlessly and painlessly
• The truth about preparing quickly, efficiently, and well
• The truth about managing anxiety and handling hostile audiences
• The truth about nonverbal signals, PowerPoint, microphones, and more
This book reveals 51 proven and bite-size, easy-to-use presenting techniques that work.
This book brings together everything you need to know to prepare well, manage anxiety, deliver effectively, connect with your audience, and succeed! Authored by top business consultant James O’Rourke, this book offers real solutions for the obstacles and fears faced by every presenter. You'll discover what makes people listen, and what instantly turns them off. You’ll learn how to prepare effectively, not obsessively; how to scope out your audience and muster evidence that'll convince them; when and how to listen; how to manage anxiety and establish a great first impression; how to make nonverbal cues work for you; how to use PowerPoint well; how to handle hostile questions confidently; and much more.
This isn't someone's opinion: it's a definitive guide to effective presenting–a set of bedrock principles you can rely on to help you win with any audience.
Part I Some Initial Truths
Truth 1 Public speaking is not easy, but it’s certainly doable 1
Truth 2 The key to success is preparation 5
Truth 3 Rehearsal is essential 9
Truth 4 Emulating good speakers will make you better 13
Truth 5 Establish goals for your presentation 17
Truth 6 A presentation is a learning occasion 21
Part II The Truth About Getting Ready to Speak
Truth 7 Talk is the work 25
Truth 8 Know what your audience is looking for 29
Truth 9 There is a difference between speaking and writing 33
Truth 10 Preparing a presentation is a relatively simple process 37
Truth 11 Begin by analyzing your audience 41
Truth 12 Know about your audience 45
Part III The Truth About What Makes People Listen
Truth 13 Understand what makes people listen 49
Truth 14 Your speaking style makes a difference 53
Truth 15 Anticipate the questions your audience brings to your presentation 57
Truth 16 Listening matters 61
Truth 17 Being an active listener brings real benefits 65
Truth 18 You can overcome the barriers to successful communication 69
Part IV The Truth About Developing Support for Your Presentation
Truth 19 Develop support for your presentation 73
Truth 20 Understand the power of your content 77
Truth 21 The kinds and quality of evidence matter to your audience 81
Truth 22 Structure can help carry an inexperienced speaker 85
Truth 23 Find support for your presentation 89
Truth 24 Use the Internet to support your presentation 93
Part V The Truth About Getting Up to Speak
Truth 25 Select a delivery approach 97
Truth 26 Your introduction forms their first impression 101
Truth 27 Begin with a purpose in mind 105
Truth 28 Keep your audience interested 109
Truth 29 Conclusions are as important as introductions 113
Truth 30 Have confidence in your preparation 117
Truth 31 Repeat the process as often as possible 121
Part VI The Truth About Managing Anxiety
Truth 32 All speakers get nervous 125
Truth 33 Recognize anxiety before it begins 129
Truth 34 Deal with nervous behaviors 133
Truth 35 Keep your nervousness to yourself 137
Part VII The Truth About Nonverbal Communication
Truth 36 Most information is transferred nonverbally 141
Truth 37 The nonverbal process can work for you 145
Truth 38 Nonverbal communication has specific functions 149
Truth 39 Nonverbal communication is governed by key principles 153
Truth 40 Nonverbal communication has an effect on your audience 157
Part VIII The Truth About Visual Aids
Truth 41 Visual aids can help your audience understand your message 161
Truth 42 Understand visual images before you use them 165
Truth 43 Choose the right visual 169
Truth 44 Use PowerPoint effectively 173
Truth 45 Consider speaking without visuals 177
Part IX The Truth About Handling an Audience
Truth 46 Assess the mood of your audience 181
Truth 47 Answer the audience's questions 185
Truth 48 Handle hostility with confidence 189
Part X The Truth About What Makes a Presentation Work
Truth 49 Know as much as possible about the location 193
Truth 50 Use the microphone to your advantage 197
Truth 51 Know your limits 201
About the Author 209