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“Who’s afraid of social media?” speech in Greece

November 12th, 2010 / 3:06 am

A few months ago, Maria Lazarimou, CEO of Advocate Burson-Marsteller invited me to speak at the “Who’s afraid of social media?” conference in Athens, Greece hosted by the Institute of Communication. Here is the video of my presentation to the audience, about 500 strong and very savvy (unfortunately time did not allow a Q&A):

Bob Pickard, President & CEO of PR firm Burson-Marsteller in Asia-Pacific from Institute of Communication on Vimeo.

Categories: speaking platforms
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Public speaking techniques

January 16th, 2010 / 3:00 pm

Here’s a BBC News Magazine piece that contains some interesting background on what constitutes public speaking success, together with useful techniques for speech-making, such as:

  • using three part lists
  • creating contrasts
  • drawing ‘word picture’ imagery

If you are into oratory, check out this piece about how Great communicators are great explainers.

Categories: bulletin
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How to avoid choking under pressure

January 7th, 2010 / 3:00 pm

Even though I love public speaking and have delivered hundreds of speeches and presentations over the years, I am not immune to ‘podium pressures’ and thus found this Scientific American article on how to avoid choking under pressure a relevant resource in preparing for the most effective platform presence.

Categories: bulletin
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Public speaking and media training

November 2nd, 2009 / 3:57 pm

Ever since my team won a high school debating tournament way back in 1982, there’s something I have just loved about standing up on my feet and speaking about any range of topics in front of audiences. Especially when I am trying to persuade people of something or close the sale of winning a new business pitch, wild horses usually can’t keep me away from finding a chance to speak.

Now, most people are somewhat leery about public speaking, many are downright afraid of doing an interview with a journalist. Me, I simply enjoy the thrill of it all. Any normal person is going to feel nervous to some extent in front of an audience (or a reporter with an audience), but how awful if we let this small little organ called the adrenaline gland come between us and the successful achievement of our purposes. For me, I try and channel the adrenaline so it fuels my performance in front of a microphone or on a stage.

Since the early 1990s, I found that I could apply the lessons I‘ve learned through my own experiences to the training of several hundred executives in North America (United States and Canada) and North Asia (Japan and Korea) in:

  • conducting effective media interviews
  • crisis communications preparation and response
  • presentation and speech delivery

Probably one of the hardest sessions I ever did was in June 2008, with professional racing drivers on a Nissan team. It was hard because normally I was accustomed to coaching fancy business executives, but these were ‘regular guys’ and I had to completely change the tonality and the manner of the session.

It goes to show that the trainer needs to keep getting trained to stay sharp, as I did here a few years ago before a TV interview in Korea:

Categories: work
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