We are here to hear you speak. So tell us a real story from your experience. Give us the context and the insights of how your team accomplished a goal—the challenges you faced, the issues you could have never predicted and the ultimate outcomes. But keep it relevant to the audience. What can we learn from your experience and apply in our careers and organizations? Your speech is to benefit us. – kris flint, citizen best

Every company has had a “stay humble” moment—a moment when things didn’t go exactly as planned. I remember the execs who are willing to share the obstacles they’ve faced and how they’ve been able to overcome them. Hearing only about the things that worked makes you feel as if you’re doing something wrong. We all make mistakes. Let’s share and learn from them. – lori paikin, navistone.

 Share your challenges not just your successes

A speaking coach is worth their weight in gold. There are so many factors to consider: audience, conference agenda, topic, amount of time for the speech, time of day (after lunch slump?), a/v concerns and so much more. A great coach will telephone list biz help you work through these so you really shine. They’ll help you craft your message and practice your delivery so you dazzle your audience. Get coaching. – randy shattuck, the shattuck group

As execs, we’re all guilty of jamming too much into our presentations at times. We can’t assume people will be as interested in what we share as we are. We must view presentations as shows designed to captivate the attention of our audience. Memorizing a presentation and having a clean, compelling and visually stunning deck to support strong ideas is the formula for a winning industry speech. – mary ann o’brien, obi creative.

Keep it clean compelling and simple

Nail your intro and tell a story. That first five minutes with the crowd is critical. Most presenters say, “hi, thanks for coming today, I’m john smith, cfo of ….” game over. Everyone’s asleep. Start by asking a question or setting up the IG Users problem you’re going to solve. What’s your story that leads to the solution? Bulleted lists will be forgotten—a captivating story will not. – bernard may, national positions

Making a speech does not mean you have to read, word by word, something you drafted in a word document. I recommend knowing what your talking points are, being comfortable with them and then getting on stage and seeing where it goes. Interact with your audience, have fun and be casual. Standing at a podium and reading off of a piece of paper will put your audience to sleep.