We’d rather face death or the dentist, we’d rather talk about money or sex, than have to speak to an audience, even a small one. Laurie Krauz can help you overcome your anxiety around talking in public, with her preparation strategies. She’s a presentation skills coach.
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Hello and welcome to Tony-Martignetti non profit radio big non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite abdominal podcast and uh, oh, I’m glad you’re with me. I’d bear the pain of elia tibial band syndrome if you irritated me with the idea that you missed this week’s show, overcome your fear of public speaking, we’d rather face death or the dentist, we’d rather talk about money or sex than have to speak to an audience even a small one, Laurie Krauss can help you overcome your anxiety around talking in public with her preparation strategies. She’s a presentation skills coach. tony state too. Next week is Memorial Day, we’re sponsored by turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot c o what a pleasure to welcome back After really too long a hiatus, Laurie Krauss to nonprofit radio having worked in both the corporate and entertainment industries, Laurie brings great skill from a remarkably eclectic educational and professional background to her work as a public speaking presentation and interview skills coach. She’s a professional entertainer and has helped men and women from all over the world and all walks of life achieve their own personal and professional styles while developing their ability to offer dynamic, compelling presentations. She’s also helped AmeriCorps, Sony BMG BBC television, jOHn jay College of Criminal Justice, martignetti planned giving advisors aptly named mary J Blige Foundation for the Advancement of Women. Now you’ll find Lori crafts on linkedin. Hello, Laurie, welcome back.
Hello, tony It’s always great to talk to you.
It’s a pleasure. It’s a job getting my, my synesthesia is kicking in. I just got chills because I know we’re going to have a valuable fun time together. I don’t know how long it’s going to be, but uh, there were,
it won’t be a problem with us having to live through those uncomfortable silences. That’s french to work.
Oh no, no, no, not at all. Absolutely Right. You know, I have my, as you’ve trained me through the years, I have my glass of warm water and I have my, you have yours. Yes, yes. I have my grandfather’s, my tin of Grifters past styles, uh, non sugar. I like the sugar free variety for uh, for potential throats and I’m feeling a little throaty today. So I took a prophylactic actually. I took a uh
yeah, it’s, you know, it’s that allergy time of year and actually we can start with a little bit of that tip is, I’ve really been struggling with allergies this year. It’s very weird because I don’t usually, and so that idea of having something like whatever it is, you would use the halls or you know, I like agricola ready because coughing begets coughing and so tip number one, have something like that ready before you’re not going to be able to leave the room or leave the screen or leave the microphone and go get something.
Have you have your AIDS within arm’s within our, when we get back to face to face presentations on the, on the second shelf for the podium. Uh, well, I don’t like podiums somewhere near you have a little table with a little water. Okay? But we’re getting we’re getting ahead. We’re getting ahead. Don’t be an anarchist stuff. Uh, it’s tony-martignetti non profit radio not Laurie Krauss.
I’m so scared
right now. You’re merely the guest.
You’re merely the guest. Yes,
I’m brutal to my guests.
All right. All right, I’m ready. I’m ready to have a formal
Yes. I prepared a formal question for you. So you are jazz singer, which I have first hand knowledge of because I’ve paid to see you perform. So I know this for a fact. It’s not rumor innuendo. How does singing? And maybe jazz singing especially inform your public speaking coaching?
That’s now I want to say that’s a great question, but I also want to say a little caveat about saying to an interviewer. That’s a great question. That will be the last time I say that because a lot of times people say that because they’re buying time to answer. And so if you as the interview, we keep saying, that’s a great question, tony It just sounds like your bs ng the interviewer.
I don’t get too many guests,
but it is a great question. Thank you. I
don’t get too many guests complimenting my questions actually, it’s a rarity, so thank you, thank you. However obsequious it maybe, or in your case not hesitating at all, but thank you for
that. So, having said that, what’s interesting about it to me is that uh public speaking is an improvisation when you get and you know this, when you get really good at it, you are not afraid of punting, you are not afraid of moving to some other thing that if I leave my script, I’m, I’m doomed because I have practiced this and I am going to do exactly this and that’s what makes for boring speakers, a great speaker is simply having a conversation with their audience. The audience just isn’t actually verbally responding. And so, you know, I always say to people, you think you need to be fancy, you don’t go and look at ted talks, go on youtube and google great uh presentations for college graduations. You will find that your favorite speakers are not using big words, they’re not using fancy paragraphs. They are simply talking and that’s what makes a great speaker. So as a jazz singer, first of all, there’s some technical things like you learn to breathe and speakers don’t get that. Speaking is a physical act and that you really actually need to be warmed up. We’re recording this early today, so I can’t not speak or move before I come to sit down and have a conversation with you. I won’t have enough breath, I won’t have enough energy. And that’s what a singer learns to warm up. A singer learns to practice out loud. You cannot think your song, you have to actually practice it. But it’s the same for athletes. I often say that becoming a great speaker we can borrow from disciplines like performance art and sports because in both of those activities, people know that they need to have a plan, they need to practice and they need to practice physically. And in the case of a singer out loud and in the case of a jazz singer, you learn, you know, there’s a joke in jazz, there’s no mistakes in jazz when you’re scatting or something like that. It’s how you resolve the phrase. So if you think you’ve hit a note that actually isn’t a good note, it’s only not a good note depending on how you finish the phrase. Same thing with a speaker, it doesn’t have to be a perfect speech. You can really mess up, you can really be awful in points. But if you are really clear about your message and passionate about your message, it can be messy and you can still get the job done.
Uh There’s a lot I love in their uh the one that stands out the most is the graduation speakers. There are so many veterans just so simple down to earth, compelling. Uh, I think of steve jobs that I’m pretty sure it was stanford and I forget what year it was, but he tells the story of when he was in college, why he dropped out of college, but how learning fonts in a calligraphy course that he was auditing. He wasn’t even, he wasn’t even a student at the time, I think it’s just dropping in. But you know, there was no security on college campuses.
like dropped in and, but that informed fonts on the Mac, that’s how we got away from whatever times, new roman that, that, uh, that IBM had at the time. So they’re just, you know, down to earth. Um, Will Ferrell has a very good one. But anyway, the graduation speakers
are, people always think they need to sound smart and and you actually sound more intelligent when you have a real comfort level with what it is you’re saying and why you’re saying it. I often say to people when I’m teaching workshops, if you and the people listening to this will have the benefit of it, how many fancy words am I going to use here and look at that last sentence. If you saw that in writing, you wouldn’t publish that in an article, you wouldn’t publish how many fancy words am I going to use here? You would say it more fancy in the article, but a speech is not an article. A speech is a conversation and so I have to put words in my mouth, literally, I have to put words in my mouth that my mouth is comfortable saying literally the anatomy of lorries mouth, my lips, my tongue, my jaw need to be comfortable saying what I’m saying so often with a client. When they say something, I’ll say, now, is that something you would say to friends if you were hanging out at dinner having a drink, Would you say it that way? And I’m not being funny here. I’m asking that because a speech should not be the time when you practice new vocabulary or phrases and paragraphs structure, you should be making it easy for your mouth to do what it does. You think about an athlete and athlete play? I was just watching tennis. So I’m an avid tenor. Tennis in my brain I’m a tennis player, but in reality I’m a much better tennis watcher than I am player and I’m fascinated by what is similar about tennis and public speaking. I was just watching Rafael Nadal, he’s playing his game, he’s not trying to do what his opponent is doing. His job is to do what he does best as a tennis player. And that’s the speaker’s job. Put stuff in your mouth that your mouth is used to saying. And you will be a good speaker
you said earlier. It’s a conversation with the audience. It’s just that they’re not active participants in the Q and A section, which happens to be my
tony is one of my very, and I mean this very few clients that enjoys the Q and A section, people are usually terrified by that. And that is in that is jazz. Yeah,
I love it. I love I love doing the Q and A’s. Well, yeah, we’ve so, uh, to be a good uh, to stay in line with the lessons that I had learned have learned had learned learned from you through the years. Um It’s been years since we worked together, but you were in my formative speaking years when I was scared and pretentious and thought I needed big words and I didn’t understand it was a conversation. And so uh you always urged that we we we guide the audience, like I’m I’m responsible for the audience. The audience is counting on me to take them through a journey and Uh within the requisite time not to go over time, not to be rushed in the last five minutes because I realized that I got 20 minutes left of material. And now the audience feels screwed because I’m blowing through the second half of my slides in the last five minutes of of an hour long presentation, you know? Yeah, the audience is counting on you. So as a guide path, I always and I’m gonna I’m gonna do it now. Um Now we say, here’s where we’re headed, that’s my agenda slide. Somebody else might call an agenda. I say here’s where we’re headed. So here’s where here’s where you and I are headed. Talk about the goal of your speaking research, right? Practice the last hour, the last five minutes, the last one minute in the post post post performance. So that’s where that’s where we’re headed. What about goals, goals that I
want to. I want to back up just a little bit
now. Goals what? Oh, you know, I thought you were gonna disapprove of my where we’re
headed slide. No, no, no, no, no. I want you there was a lot in that and I wanna keep it very simple for a moment. What happens a lot of times is you get an email and you’ve been asked to speak. And in the email, the subject line gives you the title of whatever it is they’re looking for you to talk about. And what most people do is they then write a presentation about what was in the re line. You know what the subject line said and what I think everyone needs to understand about developing a presentation Is that when in my opinion, when you speak publicly, whether it’s one on 11 on two or one on 20,000, whether it’s a job interview, whether it’s a commencement address or whether it’s what most people are doing, which is giving presentations, well not now, but In conference rooms are on Zoom or to you know, groups of 15-20 and sometimes more than that, whenever you do that, you are opening your mouth to speak because you are trying to move the listener and this is what you were talking about, about taking care of the audience and what it is. They sort of have an expectation from you. That’s this. You are trying to move them from their point a on your topic. That was that subject line to your point B This is not a passive thing of just shooting the poop about something you are trying to motivate and energize the listener to change their mind to come over to your side about your point. That is why you’re talking. Never forget that, ever, ever. It will inform all the things you’ve just talked about. Like what’s the goal? So you say goal, I I call it core message. Ask not what your country can do for you. Yes, we can, things like that. What is it? That is going to be the motivating theme of my presentation. If I want to get people to contribute money to my organization, if I want to get people to vote for me, that’s that’s the easiest one to use as an example. If in a commencement speech, what’s your core message there? I work every single year with commencement speakers And everyone thinks they just need to talk, tell their life story. No, you’re supposed to take that crowd of 8000 people and I like to think of it as a science fiction movie when you’re done speaking, they’re gonna go running screaming to the exit to take an action. What action do you want them to take in the case of a commencement speech? You want them to go out there and take a risk or you know, you need to get much more specific than that, but in the case, you want people to do something, you want them to reach in their pocket and this is not commencement. Now, in the case of wanting money from the listeners for your organization, you want the people to leave that room. This is the simplest one to explain, reach into their pocket, rip out of water bills and shove it in your hand on their way out the door. People need to get that specific about what their goal is. And the core message is the theme that runs through your speech that informs the writing of the speech. That is how you get the people to change their minds and to sign up for whatever it is you’re wanting from them. So that would be the that your goal is in every presentation to move people from their point A on your topic to your Point B.
And you do that through your core message, which pervades which pervades everything. And and sometimes you don’t even, maybe most times I’m thinking like I don’t even necessarily say the
core message. You’re saying that
you’re you’re you’re just hitting it from so many different. There’s a there’s something in trial. Look, I I spent only two years as a lawyer because I hated it. Very, very unpleasant way to make a lot of money. But I remember more from long. I learned more, much more in law school and I learned as an attorney for two years. And when I was in my trial practice courses in a Temple Law school. Now the Beasley School of Law, like, like mrs Beasley, the old dull on a family of
mrs Beasley don’t trash mrs B. Plate,
but it’s not she doesn’t deserve at the law school named after some wealthy donor trial attorney in philadelphia does
But so I still say it’s Temple University School of Law. Just Temple, not the Beasley School. So you have this you have what you want people to believe, You people the jury and you get at it like that’s in the circle, that’s the circle in the middle. And then you have all these spokes like presidents, their witnesses, their words, their story, you know, whatever it is, you’re to inform that or to get to that core message. But you never really say the core message until in trial. You don’t say it until the closing the closing argument. That’s why it’s the opening statement. But it’s a closing argument. That’s when you coalesce all those spokes into that hub of the core message and only in your closing argument. And and it’s a natural progression if you’ve done it right? So yeah, so you’re not really speaking your core message, your you’re hinting it, you’re controlling it. I don’t you’ll you’ll be more articulate about what you’re doing around it
out, did you? I’m not articulate at all. I just talk. Um so I’m sorry, interrupted. You’ve been
talking longer about talking than I have
seen a particular. I actually often when I’m teaching, you know, the only way I can demonstrate a core message is to use one that existed that people know where those come from, those come from politics. So one of my favorite examples is where they didn’t say the core message in politics. When Bill Clinton was running the first time in the war room, you know, where they plot and plan everything on the wall. There was a sign that said it’s the economy stupid. Now Bill Clinton never went and said in an interview, well, it’s the economy. Stupid James
Carville, right? Exactly. It
was James Carville who stars
in that documentary, The War Room,
which is That’s right, That’s right. And that’s exactly, that’s exactly what that was.
Clinton never said that.
He never said it, but it was the core message, so that any time he was asked a question no matter whether it was about education or buses or human beings, he brought it back to the economy. So he did what we hear all the time in politics. But what speakers who are trying to get funding for something, don’t get politicians that win stay on message. And that means the core message. Now, sometimes a regular person can have a core message that they do say out loud throughout their speech, but they don’t have to, like you said, it informs everything that you put together for your presentation, so that I often say to people, it’s kind of like the Sophie’s choice of your speech, something maybe a really interesting thing to say. But if it doesn’t serve the Master and the Master is the core message, if it doesn’t serve the master, it’s going to be in some other speech someday. Not this one because another thing that’s really important for speakers to understand, and again, politicians who win, get this. In fact, Your audience is only going to retain between two and 15 of what you say. And yet, because speakers are afraid of not having enough to say or sounding stupid, they flood their speeches with data and so no one is listening, and if they are, they’re not retaining. If you want to move people, motivate them, ignite them To move from their point a on your topic to your point B you need to target their heart and their solar plexus, not their brain. And I have about 400 million examples over the years with clients that I have wrestled to the ground about this. One of my favorites was a client who was an O. B. G. Y. N. Who was going to be giving a presentation to a room filled with O. B. G. Y. N. And I said to her, you need to dumb this down, you’re going to bore the heck out of them. And she’s like, no offense, but you’re not a physician, you don’t get this. And I said, I do get better, You blew up better. Don’t you dare say that to me. Yeah. So um she was bloodied, she was actually a long term clients. So I was able to say stuff to her and I convinced her that I actually was right and I I often say we wrestled to the ground. I finally got her to come to my side. Her presentation was so fabulous and so not data based, but more it was uh, it was on sexually transmitted diseases. And so there’s a whole storyline of who’s coming into the emergency room with this, what’s their life like, you know, tell their story and infuse it with the data and she killed it. She hard to say about a doctor, but she just, it is the hardest thing I have to get people to do is to let go of what they perceive to be. Makes a human being sound smart when they talk. It’s not data, it’s a command of the subject matter and a passion for what you’re saying. And you get that passion from a core message that you believe really strong land
it goes to the heart, not the brain,
Let’s put together there’s a bunch of stuff, we can talk about frustration. We’ll work that in, uh, there were times when I was sure you were going to throw me out of your apartment. I think you were on the, I’m sure you were on the verge of it. You if we hadn’t been working together for a long time years ago, you you might have,
you know, I never want, you know what, that’s as a coach, you know, think about this as a coach in sports that goes on all the time. And athletes are used to that as a teacher in the performing arts that goes on all the time because the creative process is very frustrating and we all, we have blocks about that and we have, we we hit walls about that. And so whenever I work with someone who comes from the performing arts, I don’t actually have the same learning curve of having my client become more comfortable with the discomfort and the the electricity that goes on between student and teacher and in sports. They know it part of the creative process, the process of becoming a great athlete and being a team player. These are very, very frustrating things.
It’s almost record. But out of
frustration comes breakthroughs,
activity, understanding recognition of, of where, where I need to go that I didn’t understand before my frustration
and I had the same thing. I remember one time I musical director, we decided to my my nephew was getting married and I wanted to, he asked me to sing at his wedding and I was adamant that I wasn’t going to sing Sunrise Sunset, that I wanted to write something. So my musical director Darrell gave me a piece of music that he had and I wrote lyrics and I went back and forth a bit with him and he’s done a lot of writing. So he’s a good coach for this. And the middle of the song, what we call the Bridge. He had some issues with. And I thought he was wrong. I was done. This is good. It is good. I am dying. And I that I left that rehearsal because I knew he knew more than me about this. I left that rehearsal furious and also committed to at least trying. I’ll just look at it. And of course it, he was right. And through my frustration, I was able to come up with something that what I had written wasn’t ready yet. And that’s the creative process. It is very hard for me personally, when I see when I have to allow a client to leave, therapists do this all the time, allow a client to leave, Not feeling happy, not feeling good, feeling incomplete and frustrated. Because I know that’s part of this freaking process.
If you’re doing it right. It is, it is. But it leads to breakthrough. Absolutely. I I saw it a dozen times, working with you and and since and
since in your goal at the time. I’m sorry to interrupt. Well I’m not really
Um your goal at the time, I will never forget because most of the time my clients are business people who want the skill set of presentation skills to not be in their way at work. Your goal was loftier. You wanted to be really great at it, integrated, wanted to have your own radio show someday. And so your your proof of what the process that you did, what you put into it. I just simply lead the horse to water.
Thank you. Well yeah, it was a it was a frustrating journey to the, to the trough. But not not not like every session, but uh but there is, yeah, there’s the there’s the time I fucking this is done. I’ve worked on this enough. It’s ready. You’re supposed to just tell me, uh you hit it. You hit it right on man. You nailed no notes, no corrections, improvements, no suggestions. You nailed it. Okay. We’re done five minutes. That’s what I was expecting.
You know, there’s like never a time if you have a director for something, there is never a time where they don’t see room for growth. It’s so frustrating. Especially if you’re a person who is more emotional and sensitive and I certainly am that I would love there to be one time where you’re told everything is perfect. The unfortunate truth and and public speaking is a performance art in a performance art. If you’ve been perfect, you have failed. It’s supposed to be imperfect. You know, think about when you’re talking to your friends. If you were perfect talking to your friends, you would be boring.
Yeah. They wouldn’t go to the bar with, you
know. That’s exactly right when we start going to bars again. Yeah. They wouldn’t
they wouldn’t have a night out with you because you bore them to shit right? There isn’t
words that you
think they want to hear it right? There’s not enough alcohol to dull the senses from your uh pretentious over the top speech. Um Look, I have to uh I’m in charge of the audience here, so I have to move us. I have to move us on. And we’re gonna we’re gonna put a couple of things together. Research and writing. Okay, searching, writing. Can we coalesce those?
Let me just say one thing about forcing to finish everything. Um If you’re focused on crossing all the T. S and dotting all the I’s and this interview is a great example, then they’re not going to remember everything we’re talking about anyway. You gotta you gotta
work with Laurie Krauss. I mean we can only yeah, thank you. I can’t make you a great speaker on nonprofit radio But Laurie Krauss can so you just
got there we go. We’re done
talking to when I interview authors about their books, I you can’t run through every page, We hit the highlights, you gotta buy the
damn book and I’m happy to get through whatever. But when you but for the audience in your presentation, try and leave a lot of breathing room. You’re more scared about having not enough. And you should be more scared about having too much because you want to you want to motivate the people to move from their point a to your point be your goal is not to cross every T and dot every I. They’re not going to remember anyway. All right. So research and writing. Is that what you asked me?
Yes, please. I know their distinct, distinct processes.
That’s okay. Research.
You’re you’re an improvisation. Ist your supervisor
go with it. I’m actually preparing a webinar for a new group. And just before we started, I was sitting down because I had asked the person who is contracting my services to give me Who are the people I’m going to be talking to. You know what I want to know the demographics. I want to know what they do now. This is a group that comes from the same organization. So they work for the same place. But he sent me a whole bunch of stuff about Uh, the organization’s mission and all that’s great. I love it. But I don’t know who I’m talking to. Still. There are 12 people I’m told, Who are they? How old are they? I don’t want to ever be surprised. I want to know that everything I’m preparing to say is targeted for the right people. I don’t want to all of a sudden I think I’m talking to a bunch of 50 year olds and show up and they’re all 23. That would be an absolute disaster for when you’re trying to motivate people. And I’m saying this over and over again because this is the point I’m trying to motivate them and in this case I’m coaching them on public speaking, I’m trying to motivate them to throw spaghetti at the wall and try the stuff I’m talking about. So I want to make sure I’m talking to the people who are in front of me. So research involves getting to know who your audience is, even if you think, you know, get to know them more specifically. The best speeches are specific. Most people talk above the topic instead of in it and threw it like steve jobs. Talking about fonts that’s in it. That’s something specific that my brain and heart, I’ve had experiences with fonts that we all can latch onto. So what’s my audience going to latch onto? My best guess is to try and get to know them a little bit before I start writing my speech. Where is it going to be? Is that a webinar? Is it in person? These are going to require very different things from me. Is it a big room? A little room? And am I required to stand at a podium? Am I going to be amplified? You want to get a sense of what all the different elements are of the presentation is so that you can relax and feel comfortable in the environment and with the people in front of you and start convincing them. So once you do all that research, then you sit down and you ask yourself. So this is the topic. The topic is my organization because of the pandemic is has just bled all our money. We need a lot of times people in the nonprofit area want to say support, I say call it as it is, we need you. It’s funny because when I work in the for profit environment, those people have no problem saying we need your money.
yeah, yeah. But man in the most wonderful organizations in the world, it’s like pulling teeth to get people to say I need you to volunteer to help out on Thursdays and I need you to bring 10 people with you. You can’t okay can you bring to or I need you can you can you When you leave here, can you put a $5 bill in that been, you know, it really can be very specific. And so once you’ve done all your research and you know what your topic is, then you start working on that core message, that underlying theme. It’s going to run through your presentation that will allow you to move those people to your point B and then when you have that core message, this is how much work this is. Then you sit down and you start writing and this is one of theirs. I think only two times I ever use what is out there in the world of public speaking coaching because I don’t agree with most of it. But this one I agree with when you write your presentation, that’s what you were saying earlier. tony tell them what you’re gonna say, say it, tell them what you said, keep it simple, Develop a very simple road map roadmap is your outline. One of the reasons and there’s a couple of reasons for that. People are only going to retain between two and 15 of what you say and that’s a real statistic. And also when I’m talking I know what I’m going to say next. The listener doesn’t. So even the most simple concepts can get lost because the listeners like a nanosecond behind you, they don’t just have to hear the word, they have to evaluate it. So keep it simple. Everything needs to serve the master. So sit at your computer and you have your core message, you’ve done your research. Just dump thought, don’t edit yourself. Don’t judge yourself. Just dump thought. Put it away if you have time, hopefully for a couple days bring it back up again and start looking for where there’s commonality where you can sort of see where you’re outline is going to come from. You know, the headings. If you’re in in my workshop, I teach research, right practice and then warm ups and so I came up with that by doing exactly this process. I dumped thought and then first I thought I had six categories and then I want weed it down to four, put everything in categories. Eventually you’re going to end up with bullets bullet points. The only people who really use scripted stuff. Our commencement speakers and politicians you don’t need to have when I when you leave your speech, your goal shouldn’t be. Do I get an A for doing all my bullet points? Your goal should be. Do I think I motivated those people do. I think I moved those people. That’s your goal. So that’s sort of the cliff notes version of all that.
What an improviser handle that. You handle that
definitely in adroitly. Thank you. Thank you very much.
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turn hyphen two dot c o. It’s time for Tony’s take two Next week is Memorial Day. We remember those who died in
and those who served, I served, I was in the Air Force for five years. And I think we sometimes lose sight of that because it’s also a blowout weekend, beginning of summer, of course, which I appreciate down here on the beach in north Carolina. At the risk of digressing though we don’t really well, it is, it is the beginning of a formal season, but the beach is never really get very crowded here. And you know, it’s north Carolina. We have summer eight months a year. So I, I feel bad for you if you’re not here. No, that was the uh, digression.
I have a timer. I’m gonna set a timer for those who have served and those who died. Let’s take 30 seconds of silence together. Think of them maybe their loved ones or maybe it’s just something abstract for you. But some the folks, the folks who served our country, let’s remember them. Thank you. Thank you very much. My fellow veterans, thanks for serving. Thank you. My thoughts are with you. If you lost someone who served it doesn’t matter that where there was a war conflict or you know, people sometimes just die in the military, non war, non conflict. Um, sometimes there are shootings and sometimes there are just deaths, people serving, having nothing to do with the conflict, whatever it is, if you lost someone, my thoughts are with you That is Tony’s take two. We’ve got boo koo but loads more time for overcome your fear of public speaking. Your practice practicing you like you used to ask me to practice while I was doing jumping jacks, pushups, high voice, low voice, comic voice. Um Those are the ones, you know, I hope I retained more than 2-15 of what you taught me. No, that’s different though repetition
though over and over. That’s a different thing.
Very interesting. What I retained when we were working together was it was it 2-15 or was it just 2%? Uh but maybe that’s because I only retained. I retained on the low end. I forgot the 15 possibility at the high end.
I think sometimes people remember too because it’s devastating news. Wait, I am killing myself here. I am doing my own research on what I want to include. And I’m Having to have energy and volume and personality. And you’re going to leave here remembering 2%. But yes. So I think people remember two because it’s just devastating.
I didn’t I didn’t remember the 15 possibility on the high end. All right. A little bit. A little about practice. You have you have unusual ways at least. I thought unusual ways of encouraging practice.
It’s actually not all that unusual. There are other people who teach presentation skills who are former actors that use stuff like this. But the practice techniques all come from the world of the performing arts and from sports. That the concept of it from sports if you what what’s happening is practicing is so freaking boring and so you want to just number one, make it more fun. And since you have to do it over and over again doing things like dancing while you practice or singing while you practice or pretending that you’re angry or punching or doing yoga while you practice it just makes it less boring. And you have to practice out loud. And the other thing that doing practice in those ways does is that what you’re trying to achieve in practicing is to become more conversational. And what is more conversational is having a more varied verbal and nonverbal way of expressing yourself verbal is the sound, non verbal, is body language and facial expression. And so instead of, we’re going to work on your body language today, which I think only makes people self conscious by doing other activities. It distracts you and in the process of distracting you. It also ekes out other verbal and nonverbal behavior that despite yourself will become a part of the relaxation in your body that allows you to be more flavorful, verbally and nonverbally when you speak. It also will make you lose your place. And so the practicing in those kinds of ways also tricks you into forgetting where you are and having to find your way back again. That business of people getting freaked out because they can’t remember where they are. That’s that has got to stop. I mean, you know at my age that happens more and more, but I’m not freaked out about forgetting where I am because I know the goal is not perfection. Perfect. And studies show audiences don’t care about not only do they not care about perfection. They hate it in a speaker and they become suspicious of the speaker and the authenticity and man, is it important for you to be authentic?
I just, I just saw an example of that. I won’t name the two guys or the name of the training company. I know it uh and they did a webinar. Somebody referred me to one of the webinars because it’s about planned giving and she wanted me to see what they what their theories are, and the guys were trying to act like they was spontaneous. Oh, that’s a very good
point that you
just need jimmy. Oh. Oh yes, I was thinking about that just the other day johnny and it was like such bullshit. I couldn’t I couldn’t what? Well, I I only agreed with about 10 of what they were saying anyway, so I didn’t watch the whole thing, but but the two of them, they were both on the screen at the same time and and they were trying to be improvisers. It was it was just off, I was so disingenuous and that’s just so affected. I could tell that they’ve they’ve done this, oh, that’s a good point. I’ve never thought of that jimmy, I could tell that he said that all the previous 40 webinars that he’s done at that exact moment to jimmy, you know, it was such nonsense,
you know. And the thing is you need to know that your audiences, they are savvy people. You know the whole reason people nobody language, they know what they hear the tone that that you’re describing is tone. You just know it’s false. And so the goal, that’s why it’s so important to put words in your mouth that your words are not only that you used to sing, but that you’re the anatomy of your head can get through them really easily. That it is literally what, how you talk in conversation. And so when you practice your speech out loud and notice how I’m finding my way back to this. When you practice your speech out loud and you do it in all these other ways. It is tricking you because you also will change some of your words as you’re doing it because it just doesn’t feel organic to you. And if it doesn’t feel organic to you, you trust me, your audiences are all over that.
Something else. You taught me small nugget. But I’ve I’ve kept it and it’s helped me a bunch of times. Your audiences don’t know what you didn’t say, but you left out that you you practiced it a dozen times and somehow you just left it out. Don’t beat yourself up. Nobody knows.
Well actually it’s not only um and again, I’m so glad you’re bringing this up because I’ve talked about this in our chat today, but Mhm. Boy, are you putting the emphasis on the wrong syllable? As my dad used to love to say when you focus on did you cross all your T. S and dot all your I’s? Which is my way of saying, Did you say everything you had set out to say if that is the litmus test that you’re looking at for how you did, it’s a fail litmus test is did you motivate and move people? You know, I’m gonna leave this conversation and think of a million things we could have talked about, but I’m in it, I’m in the I’m enjoying myself, it’s a fun back and forth and I’m excited about the things we’re saying. I’m excited about the points that we’re making and that’s the point of any presentation. Because you’re trying to motivate people, you’re not trying to get an a on a math test.
If you have enough spokes pointing to that hub, that’s that’s my metaphor of that core message. Then you left one or two out. It doesn’t matter, you had another dozen. You hit it so many other ways, it doesn’t matter. And
usually I actually leave
out your main points, You know,
I actually want to strongly disagree with how you’re even saying
does matter if that’s what you’re looking at. It does matter because it’s a fail to look at it that
way. That’s how you’re evaluating
yourself. Yes. It not only if you are evaluating yourself by how many spokes you hit or that you missed a major point, you are missing the whole point of your presentation which was to motivate people and you don’t know, you know, your main point main point might not even be the thing that motivates them. I mean that’s my understanding, I’m fascinated by um the whole process of courtroom from, you know, your opening statement, all the other stuff to the closing argument that it that lawyers will, they’ll be so surprised by the verdict because they thought they hit a nail on the head and they thought they saw those people agreeing with them. Because what they don’t get is there were other little things along the way that for whatever reason, made more of a point, we don’t know what our audience is thinking. So we can just to the best of our ability, pick something, we are passionate about, pick a core message, We are just absolutely all about pick things to say that we think are interesting and will interest the people that we think are in front of us. You know, there’s a lot of guesswork here, there’s a lot of jazz to giving a presentation and trying to motivate people because you don’t know, you know, and when I’m teaching a workshop, I’m getting that information secondhand about my audience and so you’re guessing, but your goal and how you should look back and think how did I do is when people left my room, they were talking a lot. They were energized. They, I don’t know what they were saying, but there was a lot of energy in the room when they left then. You know, you did a great job, might not get what you want, but you did your job.
I want to shout you out for being again, an excellent improviser the way you did your callback with opening statements and closing arguments in what I said 15 minutes ago. Whatever, whatever what she brings it back. What That’s
actually that’s a really important point, stand
up comedy. That’s a callback and uh kind of somebody who’s paying attention and can synthesize what someone else said into what they want to say. And that’s why callbacks are so brilliant.
It’s also important for people to remember and, and uh, that listening tells your audience that you actually hear them and you are more likely to motivate people when they feel like you’re not just talking at them, but you hear them, you’re with them, we are one. And so it makes a person feel more important to you. So then they’re more likely to listen to you. We forget that listening is it’s as important in speaking to listen.
That’s why I love the Q and A. Because I get to listen and I want to focus on what people, what’s on people’s minds. And I can use their names and now on the web, you can shout them out by city and state and, and, and if somebody says anonymous, I said, I don’t do anonymous questions. What’s next? You know, of course I answer the anonymous question, but let’s jump to the last hour. It’s the last hour before I go on. What’s your, what’s your 50 tips tricks and strategies for that? Last hour before my curtain,
I just one of my favorite memories and something that I talk about a lot when I’m teaching is you and being at, I forget what convention center where I met you in a stairwell right before you were going to go on and I had
what Marriott marquis, Marriott marquis in new york city. It was the association of fundraising professionals doing a seminar on planned giving
right. And this is what I tell my clients and this is what my client was doing, standing in a stairwell, punching or something like that. What you know, and again, sports performance arts, if you go into a locker room, if you go in, which I’ve never been into an NFL locker room, but I’ve seen videos, you’re going to see people warming up, You’re going to see big bruising linebackers meditating in a corner. That’s what they’re doing. They’re about to go on the field with one thing in mind maim and kill and they are their headphones on and they’re sitting in that like meditative thing, they’re breathing, they’re getting focused. This is what speakers need to do if you go into a theater, most theaters before a show for a lot of them, the entire cast goes out on stage and they do warm ups together and that, that’s for non musicals too. They want the cast to feel the same energy. But also people need to get their bodies warmed up speakers think they can just walk out and talk. Uh, even in this conversation, I’m having to put out a lot of air. It’s a heightened energy of speaking. So you need to warm up, you need to warm up physically and emotionally if you’re terrified, this is really important for you to do because it helps with nerves. Meditation helps with nerves doing physical things. I have people all over the world going into bathroom stalls all over the world, sitting down on the bowl and doing a breathing exercise in through the nose, out through the mouth, slow down your pulse rate, stand up and do some punching. Do do things that I often say there’s things you can do where you need to be completely silent and there’s things you can do at home before you leave, where you can be making more noise to get yourself energized. You want to be careful not to strain your voice, but you want to, if you put on music and dance, go for a walk. If you do yoga, man, yoga is a great thing to do or Pilates before you’re going to speak because it’s loosening up your body. Your entire body supports the sound that you’re going to make and so the hour before you want to get physical, you want to breathe, get air moving through your body and then the moments before you want to try and get you do something. You know, I always excuse myself when I’m teaching, I go to the restroom because usually the rooms filled with people were chit chat beforehand and I need to get focused. I need to remember I’m about to perform, I’m going to be speaking nonstop for however long and so I go into a stall where I can get some privacy and then I always think of a boxer, that Eye of the Tiger where where they’re going toward the ring. I’ve only seen this in movies where they’re going toward the ring and they just have this laser being focused, they’re about to be on
someone knocking on your door.
No, you know what is happening? Is that there? And I could not believe. Of course we’ve all been through this though, I live in midtown and you know, there’s people vacated all over the place here. So the apartment upstairs for me has been vacant and they’ve chosen today to do Whatever it is they’re doing there for the next 10.
If we can’t hide it, we flaunt it. You know, the Fedex guy knocking on your door. Well lawyer lives in a doorman building so the Fedex guy would not get up to her build uh would not get to her apartment,
but not anymore. All things stop at the front door. Those guys may I do a shout out for the people that work in the front of buildings in Manhattan. They have been killing themselves,
shout out for everybody. We learned what an essential worker is. They work in our food stores, they deliver our mail. They are are dorman for those who live in dorman apartment buildings. Of course. Police fire MTs, transit workers,
Very few people who make over six figures a year are
infrastructure. There are there are lifelines.
Yeah, they are. And uh you know, one of the guys in my building told me that and they have a union that he just got his vaccine. How is that even a thing? How is that?
You know, April I’m sorry. It’s may it’s it’s May 13. They’re essential and we learned we learned who we really we knew who we really rely on. Mm. How about our last five minutes, five minutes, one minute is there? Uh I don’t remember if there’s a difference. There’s not really too much of a difference for me. I check my look in the mirror to see if I have spinach in my teeth. Yes, there’s that one, can we do five minutes in one minute together or they two distinct?
Um you know, I’ve never really thought of it that way. I mean there’s that you know, I really think for that last five minutes you’re you’re definitely making sure your breathing, you definitely take a look in the mirror and make sure everything you don’t want to find out after that. You know, you’re whatever thai is in the wrong place or your sash was tied into the back of your pants, that bathroom and you didn’t know. Uh It’s really helpful if you know someone there to have them take a look at you before you go on because you know someone you can trust, but you really, you’re trying to circle the wagons around your passion because what what does the job is having a passion about what you’re saying? And so you want to just also, oh, eight o’clock the night before you are done
There. S Please don’t be scribbling notes in the last hour or last five minutes. You’re saying even you’re saying even 12 hours or 15, 20 hours before by scribbling at the last
minute. My grandmother used to tell me because that was a really good student and I needed a z. She would tell me That after 8:00 the night before a test, there’s nothing more you can learn. Let it go and relax. And I say that it is such good advice. Your goal is not to be perfect. Your goal is to motivate people to be interested in what you’re saying and that will help you to be interesting and let it go, let it go. And the focus turns to the physical and emotional prep and so five minutes before you need to find a way to exit the room. And if that means you can’t leave the room, you can sit in your um chair at the conference room table. If that’s where you are, sit up on your sit bones, you don’t want to be leaning back, breathe, put your feet on the floor, breathe no one’s going to know what you’re doing. Your eyes can be open, breathe in through your nose, out through your mouth and just see you can you can do a visualization of yourself getting up there and just killing it. So that’s that mental prep that athletes really know how to do? Well,
I love the visualization. Yeah. I see myself running through a tape as a as a sprinter running or whatever. Marathoner running through the finish line tape and and uh yeah, my hands are up and the crowd is cheering the visualizations.
I actually I’ll
tell you a little secret,
I have actually never told anybody this, but when I teach group workshops and I do a breathing exercise and then I have people do a visualization, seeing themselves giving the presentation, they’re going to be giving that day in the workshop and watch and I’ll say watch yourself, just get bigger and more and having fun and I see on their faces they start smiling, they’re seeing it and their whole body language changes with their eyes closed and in there, you know, visualization and and I know that person is going to have a better day that day because because they’re doing that, but I love the look on their faces when that’s going on.
How about post, you have savvy advice that has stayed with me through the years. I just finished walking off the stage, sitting down at the table. Maybe it is a table that makes your post a little tougher, but you can excuse yourself. What’s your post advice?
Yeah, I had to learn, I learned this myself from performing, because people have this habit of thinking that there for some reason they have to tell you how you did. And if you’ve done your job as a speaker, remember, I’m telling you that you’re focusing on the heart and solar plexus of your listener and that you need to be really in passionate about your core message in your topic. So, you’ve gone to an emotional place yourself, you have laid yourself role, that’s what actors and athletes do and that’s what speakers who are doing a great job do. And so now you’re done and you’re still raw. So you’re, you know, you’re sensitive and all of a sudden people are coming over and they need a piece of you or they need to tell you something about how you did. So it’s good
If you can I just interject or they’re so excited. They’ve got questions for you, right? six people lined up to ask you questions
and you can’t take care of everybody at once and you’re aware of that too. And so, you know, you want to say, go back to that bathroom and have a couple of minutes on that bowl. But if you’re trying to get people to be involved in your organization or whatever your topic was in some way, you really can’t leave. So it’s good for you. If you can just, you know, you can be talking to people and you can be breathing, they’re going to be talking, you’re going to have time where you’re not talking. And so just try to breathe. Just try that, same in through your nose, out through your mouth. If you can get used to that sort of meditation breath, you can use it all the time. And you know, it’s like you want to, you can visualize your pulse rate coming down and just try. Those are ways to try and calm down. It’s ultimately you kind of want to be able to almost disassociate from all the energy and the need for you. It’s like your mommy and all the Children are tugging at
dress. But um, but the fact is, if that’s what’s going on, you did a great job and you will get used to this after the speech thing and find your method over time. But the real comfort and relaxation is going to happen when you get to leave the room. It’s a tough time
alone. You got to be alone. Yeah, I do. I do. Yeah. Even just a minute, a minute at the end of the hall bathroom and empty bathroom will work. I love seeing when I, when I have to speak, I love seeing private bathrooms. I can, I can close, I can close the latch and I know I can punch the air and I can, I can bring myself down after. But it’s even really literally just a minute or so. But I need, I see, I guess I I perceive it a little differently if there’s people huddled around and asking questions and they’re all excited because I moved them. I consider myself still on stage.
I feel like I’m some still performing. I have to be alert listening as you stressed. Uh it’s extended Q and A. Which as I said, is my favorite part. I love the Q and A. So it’s an extension of that. I consider myself still performing and then ultimately the crowd is gonna dwindle. You’re giving out your last card, then I go and I retreat to a private quiet corner or a private bathroom.
Yeah, that, that actually is a real, really important thing that you just said and it’s more accurate, you are still performing. So the thing is that, although if you’re doing a one on one and you feel the need to do the breathing great, but you’re right about that, the reality is you’re still performing and so you need to still be in performing mode Energy, which you most likely will be because you have the energy that’s still with you of having done that show. But I’m that way too though about even if I don’t need to use the restroom before I leave the building, I go use the restroom because I just need, there’s just something about solitude. Look, you’ve really done your job as a performer and this is performing. You have given away yourself to your yourself raw, you said. And so you need to get yourself back and just that moment and quite honestly it’s different for different people and this is where people have to find their way. What are the things that I need to do when I’m done so that I can just relax and feel good and whatever and and right after is not at all the time to evaluate how you think you did right after. You should just feel like you did, you, you showed up, you did your thing and that’s a win. There’s always room for growth unfortunately, unfortunately. And you know, some things I might change for me the whole having to teach public speaking, you know how I teach, you have to teach public speaking presentation skills in a webinar, which is a workshop that is highly interactive when I do it, that has been a very difficult adjustment for me. And uh but that’s what, that’s what you do when you’re learning how to do presentations, it’s very difficult. And so when something like that’s thrown in the mix,
you said something that I want to credit you for, you said you let yourself raw and when you and I were working together, I used to get a little wispy now, I used to aspire to my Springsteen moments because I’ve been to dozens of his concerts, dozens scores of his concerts, and even watching them on a video, you can just see The man, even at 70 plus years old, he’s in a place that few people get to enjoy. I don’t even, you know, uh spiritual, its its professional, it’s just a it’s just a special place. And I used to aspire to those Springsteen moments and I have achieved them. And I would call you at the after when I was after my solitude after, after the performance, after the presentation, After the solitude, I would call you on my way, or this was even before texting and uh and I would say I had a Springsteen moment, it was just, it was just such a feeling that I was I was just cruising and everybody was cruising with me. They were following me as I was presenting and you know, that’s, you know, talk about Let yourself raw, I mean, those are those are exhausting, right? But fulfilling. So gratifying beyond gratifying, you know, help me get there a lot
a lot. Well, you, I mean, tony you threw yourself into everything, but I want to say something more about that for the listeners who might be out there who are soft speakers and don’t, you know, I’m a big emotional person, I like to laugh big, I like to cry big, I like to be big, but there’s a lot of people out there who are not like that and we’re not saying you need to be Springsteen or be really big to be a great speaker, you need to be authentic, you need to have something that you’re talking about, that you are passionate about in your way. And I remember where we met in the, The networking workgroup right? There was a woman in there who um every so often we would get to give a 10 minute presentation and she did everything wrong, everything I tell people not to do. She had written something, she stood up, she read it, she never looked up and she was very soft spoken. Thing is she’s a great writer and it was Incredible. It was so beautiful. So it was like those old painewebber now, I’m aging myself commercials where that when painewebber speaks everybody listens you were like her child for 10, not you, but one was like her child for 10 minutes. You hung on every word. She is the exception to the rule.
She’s also a professional writer and editor. That’s right. 30, 40, 40 years of publishing experience.
Exactly, publishing. But I use that as an example with my students all the time. These are all the things I’m saying we do. And there are people out there who don’t have big personalities, that’s who they are. That doesn’t mean they can’t be a great speaker. It just means that we have to find within them what their passion is on the topic and figure out ways that they can put words in their mouth to allow themselves to just enjoy saying what it is they’re saying and people will listen if you’re authentic. Mhm. When she did that. Yeah, I remember
that. Yeah. We went over time. I don’t know. I had a timer. For some reason. We went over like 10 minutes. I don’t care. It doesn’t matter at all. Laurie Krauss, L A U R E K R A U Z. You’ll find her on linkedin. You just if you want to be better speaker, speak to her uh outstanding. She’s outstanding and you’ve been outstanding through the years. It’s always was a pleasure working with you. I may have you, you know, you’re motivated me. I may have you. Well, I’m doing something today this afternoon. I’m doing a call him quick shot. 45 minute webinar maybe. I’ll have you uh I’ll ask you to look at it. I would like, I’d like your notes after all these years. I’d like some notes,
wow, tony I’m
gonna do it. I’m going at three o’clock. It’s 11 o’clock today. Three and four hours I’m performing um doing a webinar on planned giving. I’m gonna I’m gonna shoot you the video link and uh let’s let’s talk about it. It’s I love it. I love it.
I love talking to you, Tony and I’m so pleased for what you’ve created here. It’s just amazing.
You helped me create it. You did, you were there in my formative
Next week, an archive show for the short holiday week. I’ll pick your winner, I promise. It will not be the fermentation show. If you missed any part of this week’s show, I beseech you find it at tony-martignetti dot com. We’re sponsored by turn to communications pr and content for nonprofits. Your story is their mission turn hyphen two dot c o. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff shows, social media is by Susan Chavez. Mark Silverman is our web guy and this music is by scott Stein, mm hmm. Thank you for that Affirmation scotty. He was in the next week for nonprofit radio big non profit ideas for the other 95 go out and be great.