The Public Speaking Toolkit provides a collection of speeches in different formats – text, presentation and video. The purpose of this speech collection is to offer a quick reference to what a 5-7 minute speech looks like on paper - how many pages and how many words make up a speech, and as a presentation deck –how many slides would be enough to support the live delivery of the speech. Some of the speeches even come with the actual video recordings from Toastmasters meetings.
My professional background is in sales, marketing and management consulting. Many of the consulting engagements revolved around Power Point presentation decks, facilitating meetings and speaking to people around the table in conference rooms. But I found speaking to a group of strangers on topics different from what's covered in the office to be quite a different experience. I discovered that because of the different nature of the speech topics, the language and subject matter, it often took more preparation than I expected. The goal of this public speaking toolkit is to share the deliverables behind that preparation, so you can have at least a few comps when you build up yours.
I started this public speaking sourcing and referencing project while I was a member of the Wry Toastmasters Club in Bellevue, WA. Wry Toastmasters is one of the thousands of clubs of Toastmasters International. Toastmasters is one of the most reputable, effective and inexpensive ways to learn to speak in public. Many of the club members were helpful with their feedback, advice and direction on how to improve my speaking and presentation skills. However, I still thought it would be nice to see a more tangible collateral of the work that goes behind delivering the final speech. I found plenty of advice, definitions, descriptions and sometimes even videos of other speeches, but it was hard to find the actual written text or presentation decks.
In 2007 I moved from San Francisco to Miami Beach and was looking to play tennis. The local tennis center didn't have any print outs for the tennis ladder they were running. So I thought I'd put up a website what lists the players' names. Eventually that idea turned into a larger scale project called Tennis Round which in turn made me look to improve my public speaking skills, in order to better represent the company when giving presentations.
I'm happy to say that both inititatives are up and running. I've completed the fist manual in the Toastmasters program - Competent Communication - and I'm working through the second one - Speaking to Inform.
At the same time Tennis Round is now live and connecting tennis players in San Francisco as well as tennis players in Miami or elsewhere in the country, and helping them find tennis courts anywhere in the United States.
The videos don't always (or ever) follow the copy of the speech verbatim. Some people memorize their speeches and deliver them exactly as they wrote them. Others, like me, can't or don't want to remember what they wrote and improvise during the speech delivery, so every time they'd deliver the speech, it might be different. So, don't expect to read the speech from the PDF copy and follow the speaker in the video. The presentation decks, by contrast, should be the same as shown in the video.
You’re welcome to use the resources in this site for your own personal, non commercial purposes only. No guarantee is made with regard to the accuracy of the text, data and any of the information in the speeches. I am not a professional public speaking expert or anything like that at all. This content is not meant to offer best practices or methodology to follow. It is merely intended to offer a comparison and share another way of doing things. After all, some of the speeches might even give you an idea of what you'd like to talk about. I remember asking myself that question when I signed up with Toastmasters. OK, I've signed up and I'm ready to go, but what am I going to talk about?...