5 Keys to a Brilliant Presentation or TED Talk

5 Keys to a Brilliant Presentation or TED Talk

Great TED Talks have two things in common: intriguing content, and a speaker connected to him or herself. One without the other will lead you to change the channel.

When speakers are connected to themselves, we interpret this as confidence. Since we read each others’ confidence (or lack of) immediately, it’s important to know how to project confidence when giving a TED Talk or any presentation. Here’s five tips to get you started:

  1. Connect to What Matters: Before you write out your talk, jot down the top 1-3 things that really matter about your topic. Why do you care about this topic? How would you share your concerns with a friend? This step refers to your content.
  2. Speak from Your HeartPerfection has never made anyone’s heart go melty. Share your thoughts from your heart. This step is not about content; it’s about your way of being, the place you come from while speaking.
  3. Connect to One Person: When you connect with one person, everyone in the audience feels it.  After awhile, move on to the next person. Disregard outdated advice, such as “scan the room continually’ or ‘look above everyone’s heads’. These are fear based, and your audience will feel it.
  4. RelaxRelaxation with self is interpreted as confidence. Most of us, even fairly confident people, lose confidence precisely when it’s needed most: in key moments when buy-in is crucial, when presenting, when we’re up against an particularly important challenge. Though it seems contradictory, it can take some practice to learn how to relax while the spotlight is on. Executive presence training teaches you how to remain fully in your power while connecting with others. It’s beautiful.
  5. Practice:  Of course, practice your material prior (no one wants to hear your dry run).

The secret ingredient to giving a great TED Talk is that these speakers have a spark of authenticity.  Your way of being speaks louder than words.

More on confidence:  In the business world, we refer to confidence as executive presence.  Executive presence isn’t fake. Executive presence is an extraordinary combination of peace and vitality. TED Talk presenters with executive presence know how to remain centered while interacting seamlessly with others.

Great TED Talk speakers have nailed executive presence: they are present and authoritative, connecting yet self-contained. Developing executive presence is neither about becoming a cookie-cutter person, nor is it about letting your sloppy weekend-self hang out. True executive presence allows you to fully be yourself — whether nerd, extrovert, conservative or a liberal — it’s just a less anxious or scattered version of you.

After decades of coaching and training some of the world’s top leaders, I’m sold on executive presence training. Executive presence is for everyone, not just those who want to give a great TED talk.  After all, who doesn’t want to look and feel more confident, powerful and credible?  Even the most powerful C-Suite leaders benefit from fine-tuning their “this is me” message.

Want executive presence for yourself or your team? Whether you want to deliver a great TED Talk or just connect with others (while feeling powerful within yourself) do this: Learn the tools to look and feel confident, connected and radiant, despite circumstance.

These five tips share is how to give a great TED talk – and it can be learned.  Invest in yourself. After all, you bring yourself wherever you go.

Power for Everyone: May all beings remember their full magnificence and benevolent power.

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