presentation skill

How to acquire presentation skill, and any other skill

By on February 10, 2010

This article is based on a book preview in Fortune Magazine, Oct 27, 2008.  The book is: Talent is Overrated by Geoff Colvin. We admire great performers and often attribute their success to a unique talent they have for their particular field. The problem is that there is no evidence that talent has much to […]

Pascal’s Wager and Public Speaking

By on June 27, 2008

Blaise Pascal was a 17th century French mathematical genius who spelled out the laws of probability more clearly than anyone before him.  This was a watershed moment, because for the first time humanity had a systematic way of thinking about the future. Pascal was both a gambler and a religious zealot.  He wanted to know […]

Pascal’s Wager and Public Speaking

By on June 27, 2008

Blaise Pascal was a 17th century French mathematical genius who spelled out the laws of probability more clearly than anyone before him.  This was a watershed moment, because for the first time humanity had a systematic way of thinking about the future. Pascal was both a gambler and a religious zealot.  He wanted to know […]

Public Speaking and the Importance of Character: A Life’s Lesson

By on June 25, 2008

On June 20th in the Wall Street Journal, in response to the media coverage of Tim Russert’s untimely death, Peggy Noonan wrote in her Declarations column, “When somebody dies we tell his story and try to define and isolate what was special about it–what it was he brought to the party, how he enhanced life […]

Business Communication: Sharing the Podium

By on May 9, 2008

Dividing the Dais Sharing a podium is a frequent method for by-passing yet another dry presentation and (we hope) generating heat and light between two or more people seated on stage engaging in friendly verbal exchanges. In my experience, each speaker prepares and delivers a short talk (less than 10 minutes) on the topic being considered, takes a few […]

Effective Presentation Skills: Substance with Style

By on October 1, 2007

Cicero, the great Roman statesman and orator, said that he preferred tongue-tied intelligence to ignorant loquacity. That’s a convenient polarity, and one we’re familiar with. We see the former occasionally when college professors make an appearance on national TV. They can look like owls with ruffled feathers blinking in the glare of daylight. We see […]

Presentation Skills: The Bang at the Beginning

By on March 24, 2007

You will have noticed, if you’ve read through these postings, that I am a fan of Henry Ward Beecher, one of the greatest speakers in American history.  Even Lincoln looked up to him. Here is a description of Beecher written by Milton MacKaye and published in The New Yorker. Henry Ward Beecher had a genius for […]