Let’s face it, there’s a lot of misinformation out there when it comes to public speaking and presentation skills. In recent months, I’ve discussed a number of myths related to public speaking — ideas, stories and advice that either doesn’t help a speaker or can add unnecessary stress to speech preparation. While I feel a lot of people that call themselves public speaking experts propagate these myths as if they were gospel, there are several people out there that really know their stuff. So I’d like to introduce you to four of them that not only coach people, but also have excellent blogs about public speaking. While there are many others out that are also quite knowledgeable, these four are great people — friendly, helpful, approachable and people that truly do this to help others succeed.
I first came across Lisa’s blog “Speak Schmeak” through a blog search a couple years ago and immediately bookmarked it. Ironically, a couple days later a friend recommended I check out a blog called “Speak Schmeak” as she felt it was one of the best blogs out there on speaking — and she was right. Lisa has a very nice writing style and she finds lessons about speaking from the most interesting places. I like how she can take something that happened on TV or at a comedy club and take away a valuable lesson from it. Her advice is exceptional so I highly recommend her coaching services (she’s based out of California, but she also does phone and DVD coaching).
The ultimate public speaking blog is Andrew’s “Six Minutes”. In addition to his own advice (which is excellent) that pops up in his posts, Andrew also scours the blogosphere every week to bring you the best posts related to public speaking. I’ve come across some fantastic blogs just by dropping in to see what he’s found. Another cool thing about Andrew’s site is his article series providing an in depth look at a particular topic. Andrew is based out of British Columbia, Canada and has done a lot for the public speaking community including setting up AllTop Speaking. He’s a must read for members of Toastmasters.
If you’ve been heavily involved with Toastmasters over the last few years, then you may have heard of Rich. I interviewed him about a year ago as he was once again in the finals of the Toastmasters International Speech Contest. While Rich is a terrific speaker, he’s also an amazing person. I met Rich back when I was a Toastmaster through social media — Rich was always one of the first to share advice whenever I (or anyone else) needed help. Now being nice is one thing, but sharing helpful and useful advice is another — and of course, Rich’s advice was excellent. Rich has two blogs that I recommend: “Speak and Deliver” which is full of public speaking advice and “Champion of Choice” which tackles personal development. Rich is based out of Washington state.
Olivia, who is based out of New Zealand, writes a brilliant blog called “Speaking about Presenting” where she offers both advice and challenges her readers to think about presenting from a different angle. Olivia has no fear when it comes to busting public speaking myths and challenging research that doesn’t sound quite right. Olivia’s posts are a refreshing change from the “do this to be a great speaker” mentality that many other bloggers share — she has a different view on “common knowledge” and her advice is excellent. I highly recommend checking out her blog.