Wow. I did Rob Bell's course on speaking and it was INSANE. Enjoyed every bit of it. It had great content, funny stories, practical takeaways and most importantly, questions I can ask whenever I am preparing a talk in order for it to be relevant, meaningful, free flowing and powerful.
Just for reference I came across Rob Bell's course whilst listening to Rich Rolls Podcast (will attach a link at the bottom). I will certainly re-listen to the course several times in my lifetime and read over my notes so I can drill in the questions to ask before giving a talk.
I applied Rob's wisdom to the talk I gave today (25th November) at the Entrepreneurship society and I received a message after from a fellow member which read, "Bro your energy is unmatched, I love it. You’re a great presenter". I can 100% credit this to Rob's 7 hour and 45 minutes long course. I went into the talk a lot more confident talking about the things I talked about.
Furthermore, I was actually excited to provide the value I believe I did during the talk. I will attach all the notes I took during the course shortly but I first want to discuss some of my favourite things I learnt: 1. Audience's pick up on stuff. If you are nervous, they will feel it. If you are talking about something you don't believe in, they will feel it, if you simply don't want to be there, they will feel it. So it is important to really LIVE the stuff you talk about.
A practical application for this is to capture things. If you randomly notice something, write it down. If you share a special moment with a group of people, take a photo of it. He said if you capture 1 thing a week, that's 52 potential things you could talk about a year. 2.
Linking onto the end of point
"not all content presents itself on your timetable. You could be giving a talk on Monday and the content may have arrived 2 years ago or 2 weeks later.
Most importantly, plant some seeds. The story may mean something years from now but planting those seeds so when you are working on a talk you have that quote from a movie or that saying the cashier said or those two Greek words, plant seeds.
Raw curiosity is the most beneficial thing to have. I loved this part of the discussion.
I related really well to it as I find myself questioning tons of things. Going one step further, Rob shares great examples whereby he was at an event and stuck talking to this guy who was a software developer. Instead of backing out of the conversation, he began asking questions and ended up hearing some really interesting things, because he was curious and asked instead of being awkward and afraid.
- You should be able to give a 30 second summary of your talk. If not, you are likely waffling and will lose the audience if there is now proper meaning.
Figure out what the universal truth of the talk is and the life inside it. This may take a lot of work, but it is key in delivering valuable talks.
- Honouring the audience's time. It is not fair to ramble for the audience. You should practise a lot before so you can go in with power and deliver them value without beating around the bush.
Structure enables the audience to know exactly how the talk is going to go and consequently they will then be excited for the topics you are going to discuss: example from my talk in Entrepreneurship society... I said at the start of my talk, "In my 15 minutes with you all: I want to share a story about 7 pairs of socks, why now is the time to start your business, and my thoughts on achieving success".
Following Rob's guidance, he explained by doing this at the start, the audience will be more relaxed as they know they are in good hands.
They may not know how one things leads to the next but you have clearly shown them you have put time and effort into structuring the talk well and the audience will then be excited to hear about 'a story about 7 pairs of socks' for example.
I could go on listing so many gems that I took from Rob's course. I am not sure if this is shown to the other students but I would strongly encourage anyone to take the course.
For $20, there is a ton of value provided.
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