BLOG: Top TEDxRotterdam Speaker Coach tips

Ever wondered how the TEDxRotterdam speakers get to be so good? It is our lovely speaker coaches that are always on hand with a helpful tip and, of course, a lot of coaching before a speaker takes to the stage.



We asked them what their top tips were and here is what they said:

Mariana Selwaness
It´s better to have one take home message that you repeat several times, than several take home messages that you mention only once. Speakers usually have a lot of exciting information that they want to share. But by keeping it simple and repeating the essentials, you can make your speech much more powerful.

Marija Josipovic
- Make sure that the core message is clear and repeat it a minimum of 3 times. At the start, middle and end. - Let yourself be seen in your message, why is the message important to you? - Use humour - Speak to all senses: hearing, touch, sight, smell and taste. Then everyone will feel adressed, because we all have a preference for one or the other for instance visual or audio. - Think long about which emotions you want to bring to the audience. People rememeber the emotion you leave them with more then what you say. - Practise, practise, practise. Do it in the car, in front of a mirror or to your family. - Read the book ¨talk like TED¨ by Carmine Gallo

Leontien van den Berg
1. Keep it short and simple (KISS) rather zoom in on one topic instead of giving in to the urge to tell everything you learned througout your life 2. Keep it real, share the stories that changed you, make it about your own experience so people will believe what you're telling them, they feel it's real. 3. Start with 'the idea', write down in 3 sentences what it is you want people to remember after your talk and build from that. 4. rehearse, record your talk on to your phone and play it as much as possible, so you've heard it a 100 times before you're on stage and won't have to remember it. 5. Let it go & enjoy. When you're on stage, trust in yourself and let the story go. Enjoy the experience to the max

Shyam Chedoe
Uniqueness is what I seek in a TEDx speaker. Why? Because sharing an idea is not just telling a story. It’s taking people on a journey through the depths of your thoughts and leaving them with a vision that resonates with yours. In order to give a talk that sticks with people, here are my top 5 tips and tricks to help you along the way:

Tip #1 "REPETITION"
This tip might seem somewhat redundant to a few, but it is one of the most important ones there is! I need you to realise that there are always three speeches, for every one you actually gave. "The one you practiced, the one you gave, and the one you wish you gave." Keeping this in mind, it's important that you've practiced your pitch so much, that you've created a consistency of quality which allows you to really have that natural flow of speaking. Practice doesn’t make perfect. Practice makes permanent. That means; 1. No abrupt stoppages in the middle of sentences; 2. Not having to find the right words (how do I say this word in English again?); 3. Keeping "uhms" (by having to think during your speech) to a minimum.

Tip #2 "TIME MANAGEMENT"
When you're standing on that famous red dot, you'll have about 18 minutes to give a solid speech. Why? Because 18 minutes is long enough to be serious and short enough to keep people’s attention throughout your entire talk. Make sure you've practiced at home with a timer so you don't have to worry about how long your speech is. I would advise to time the different parts of your speech and follow up by randomly also practicing these different timeframes. That way, if you have some parts of your speech you find it hard to ‘flow’ through, you don’t need to continuously start rehearsing from the beginning.

Tip #3 "TRANSITIONS"
Most speakers don't know this, but it's usually the transitions between the different parts of their speech which leaves them gasping for words. A solid build up speech, has a strong beginning, informing midsection and of course, a powerful end. Try to fully memorize the sentences which connects the beginning to the middle and the middle to the end. This way, it will be easier to keep a nice flow during your speech without having to think about what you were going to say next.

Tip #4 "BODY LANGUAGE"
You've probably read or heard numerous times, about how your body language gets interpreted by the audience and all the things you should pay attention to. I would advise to keep all those tips in the back of your mind, but most importantly, to follow your gut and stick to what feels natural to you! If you, for example, are not the type of person who likes to move around a lot during your speech. Try to take a little step now and then, but prevent yourself from forcefully walking around the stage. That would make it look like you're just pacing up and down. The few things to do pay attention to: 1) Keep your back straight; 2) When you speak, look at the audience (sometimes people walk and look in the direction they're walking. instead of at the audience). 3) Use gestures to emphasise the things you say, not because you think you have to.

Tip #5 "ENJOY"
You've been chosen to give your TEDx talk to an audience for a reason and the reason is, because your idea is worth sharing and you’re GOOD! Have enough faith in yourself that you've got it in you and enjoy the fact you get to stand on an actual TEDx stage in one of the biggest cities in the Netherlands! As long as you keep that in mind, I'm sure all of you will put on a performance to be proud of!

Don't be shy, get off the couch and come meet us in the bar on the 29th March for the main TEDxRotterdam event and help yourself and us raise the bar! Buy your ticket right here right now and be sure to be part of our crowd.

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