Title: Spice Up Your Speaking Presentations
Author: James Ocque
Genre: Reference – Self-Help
Reviewed By: Barbara Miller
Pacific Book Review
What’s the difference between someone in leadership in industry or services and a guy holding a megaphone in a crowd provoking a call to action? The answer is – not much. They are both similar forms of public speaking – so although not quite the “same,” they have more in common than differences. Common lessons of each of the various forms of public speaking include: knowing your subject; understanding your audience; having the ability to view your points from the perspective of your audience; knowing when and how to use humor; and finally having practiced what you are speaking about. Those are some of the lessons introduced in this very comprehensive guide titled Spice Up Your Speaking Presentations by author James Ocque.
We all are asked to experience public speaking in many ways – especially nowadays with the Internet using WebEx or Go-To-Meetings so often. For those preparing a presentation, Ocque’s checklist of things to do is invaluable to pay attention to. Not only in gaining a comfortable and confident acumen of the subject matter, but also in the technical aspects of the presentation; such as checking the sound levels of the auditorium, understanding the visual presentation mechanics, knowing where the light switch is and so on. One should never have to ask, “Can you hear me in the back?”
The finer aspects of creating a presentation are brought out as well as the basics. For example, in presenting your deliverable facts and persuasive points in a hard-driven sequence of statements, Ocque suggests allowing the audience to “relax” for a few minutes before diving into another sequence of drilling in points will differentiate your presentation from ones more amateurish. The aspects of humor are best when the punch line is unknown to the audience, and even better when the “story” is something personally experienced by the speaker rather than a third-party. Bringing together no more than 3 points at a time is better than having a whole list beyond the capability of the audience to remember. Finally, don’t simply read the presentation.
It all boils down to respecting the audience. Not only by what you say, but just as importantly how you say it – including the use of your body language. By refreshing your knowledge of what you think are the rules of public speaking with those outlined by Ocque, you will sharpen your skills while doing something amazing – lowering your own stress by being more prepared. Spice Up Your Speaking Presentations is craft fully written, stays on subject and well worth the time to read and makes for a more professional, persuasive and enjoyable public speaking presentation. This book should be required reading in many schools, colleges and trade preparatory classes to help students polish their skills for the business world ahead. If you have reason to do public speaking – anything from small groups to the career-critical presentations – Spice Up Your Speaking Presentations should be your go-to reference.