I’ve been known to stand in front of large groups of people, pacing back and forth, waving my hands furiously and talking. I used to get panic attacks when I did this, but after a lot of practice, the butterflies are still there, but I no longer panic.
I’ve spoken to very large crowds in Wellington, New Zealand, who scared me with their powerful anonymity; I’ve run small workshops in the middle of winter in Philadelphia with bright people who asked equally bright questions, and once I was asked to speak on a moving bus in Ireland — it was awesome.
I’ve developed short presentations that cut to the chase in 15 minutes. I’ve designed longer presentations that fill an hour. Webinars – no… I like to see what they are thinking. I like it when Q&A is a part of a presentation because the audience is always smarter than I… and their questions always remind to mention that thing I forgot to say.
A few of my favorite talks in no particular order are:
- The Second Act – why 2.0 is harder than 1.0.
- The New Manager Death Spiral – how new managers fail.
- Stables and Volatiles – diversity of opinion == winning.
- The Vegetable Talk – leadership 101.
- Confidence is a Cocktail – how to speak in public.
- Fear is a Liar – how to write about what you love.
Many of the above talks exist in various forms on the Internet, but the recording quality and my delivery quality wildly vary. Here are a couple that I think I nailed:
(Header photo courtesy of The Lead Developer, one of the finest leadership conferences on the planet)