Here are notes on the MIT lecture How to Speak by Patrick Winston:
How to Start
Start with an empowerment promise.
Cycle on the subject.
Build a fence around an idea. This helps distinguish your idea.
Use verbal punctuation.
People occasionally fog out. Provide landmarks for them to get back on track.
Ask a question.
You can wait for 7 seconds for an answer. Choose your question carefully. Not too obvious, not too hard.
Time and Place
Around 11am: people are awake, before the meal.
Place: well-lit, audience should not fall asleep.
Case the place before.
Slides: for exposing knowledge
Always: too many slides, too many words.
Blackboard & chalk: for informing, teaching, lecturing.
- has a graphic quality
- speed: The speed in which you write down things corresponds to the speed on which the audience can grasp your ideas
- target: speaker has something to do with their hands
Props are important for mirror neurons: audience is more engaged because they feel like writing on the board or using the prop.
How to Improve Slides
- do not read
- be in the image
- keep images simple
- eliminate clutter
Force the audience to listen to you instead of reading the slides.
Avoid the laser pointer crime: you need to point to the slides and lose contact to the audience.
How to Inspire
How to Teach People How to Think
Provide people with
- the stories they need to know
- questions they need to ask about those stories
- mechanisms for analyzing
- ways of putting stories together
- ways of evaluating how reliable a story is
How to Persuade
You have 5 minutes to show that
- you have vision
- done something
Vision relates to a problem that somebody cares about. You offer something new in your approach.
List the steps to solve the problem you presented - you don’t have to have completed all steps.
Enumerate your contributions to establish that you’ve done something.
Why should you care?
You never get used to being ignored.
You need a
- symbol for your work
- salient idea
How to Stop
- thank collaborators (put it on the first slide)
- more details see link
- “the end”
“Thank you” is a weak move.
You can tell a joke.
Salute the audience.