Speakers from History

Words Pack a Punch

By on January 23, 2013

Over forty years ago, drifting through my undergraduate years in my ratty easy chair, I came across three words that lifted the veil from my eyes.  Ethos, Pathos, and Logos, the Three Musketeers of rhetoric, seemed to me to be so comprehensive, so simple yet so profound, that I literally had a physical sensation as […]

Make it look simple and easy

By on October 10, 2012

I subscribe to Lapham’s Quarterly, a magazine you should get if you have an appetite for a perspective beyond the micro-moments of our digital age. As you know, I’m in the business of helping knowledgeable people sell themselves and their ideas.  As we count down to the next presidential election, this is a timely topic […]

Public Speaking: The Big Fat Issue

By on February 7, 2012

“Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people.” — Teddy Roosevelt Teddy Roosevelt was a Republican President who was committed to checking the power of elites. His remark that I quote above is apt for our time. I don’t know if it was true […]

The Greeks gave the gift of public speaking

By on June 29, 2011

I am on a boat going from Athens to the island of Serifos, but I’m still thinking about all those ancient Athenians who dug up the guiding principles that create the foundation of public speaking, persuasion, and the entire modern communications industry. Demosthenes was one of them, “supreme in vehemence and power,” or so we […]

Public Speaking: On the use of TelePrompters

By on February 15, 2010

Many people acknowledge that President Obama is a good public speaker.  At the same time, many note a significant difference in the quality of President Obama’s speech between those occasions when he uses a Teleprompter and those when he speaks extemporaneously. They assert that his oratorical gifts are actually not as great as they seem […]

Public Speaking: Talent or Skill?

By on June 13, 2008

Public speaking is a talent before it becomes a skill. A talent is a latent ability, something that is dormant inside you. When you work at it, it becomes a skill. If you do have a potential talent for speaking and you work at it, you are likely to receive encouragement and recognition for your […]

Public Speaking Training: The Dreaded just-after-lunch Slot on the Program

By on May 22, 2008

Effective speaking has many enemies. A partial list would include a speaker’s lack of experience, stage fright, lack of training, no clear point, too much information, and finally, no clear flow, or structure. We could go on. But the items on the list are only those enemies that hide within the speaker himself. What about […]