I gave my first Icebreaker speech last night at my Toastmasters Group. The title: The Book Kahuna: Chapter and Verses.
The art of public speaking, and I do mean art, is one that is the stuff of many a nightmare for uncounted numbers of people. The thought of standing in front of 15, 20, 100 people, completely naked, in a figurative sense, and leave them with a kernel of knowledge is something that takes time, diligence, patience and a will to succeed and excel in this oratorical forum.
Don’t Do This…
Yes Do This…
For years I have been thinking that I need to advance my ability to expound my ideas and visions in a compact and succinct way. There have been times in business when I have left too many “ahs”, “so’s”,” ums” and double clutch, “then again, and then agains” out dangling in the verbal realm for my own good sake. About two months ago I started the process to alleviate this gap in my professional toolbox by looking into a Toastmasters group.
A close friend told me that to get the most out of your Toastmasters experience; you need to join a very active and successful group. I looked into and visited several groups, but then this same friend recommended that I visit the Lafayette “Speak with Ease” Group. I am very happy that I took his advice.
The Book Kahuna Unleashed
I work in publishing and have started an enterprise that will require me to give many speeches, interviews, podcasts and presentations on all facets of the digital publishing realm. To do this work effectively, I will need to be armed with a vocabulary and structure that will make this set of projects a joy and not a chore. The Book Kahuna has started the process of upgrading the ability to present topics in logical, understandable verbiage that will entertain as well as inform the attendee and listener. I see this as a complimentary education to the experience and academic credentials already brought to the table.
Speaking well is no less a streamlining process on the entrepreneur’s infrastructure as any physical and fiscal set of tools that can be brought to bear. If you can get your ideas and information across to your audience in 1/3, to ½ the time it would take if you did not have these skills, then you are making your process that much more efficient in the long run. Time can be monetized, and the longer it takes to explain a topic or set of directions the less time you have available to shift into other areas of your corporate entity. Speaking well advances efficiency and puts more revenue stream into your pockets in the long run.
I have never had a problem with putting words to paper. Writing is an art-form that I love very dearly and have never experienced any sort of writer’s-block that would leave me lacking for sufficient topics to discuss. Speaking and writing are not interchangeable expression forms. Being a good writer does not mean you are a good speaker. The inverse is also true: A great speaker is not necessarily a gifted writer. The trick is to take the talents that you have and fine-tune them so you are conversational in both communication formats.
For anyone who wants to advance their career in Publishing or in any other corporate or entrepreneurial area: I highly suggest a Toastmasters group to advance your public speaking abilities. It will pay off ten-fold down the road.
Publishing like it Oughta Be! (Homage to the ’86 Mets!)
Follow me on Twitter at: Donald Schmidt@thebookkahuna