Speaker’s Checklist – 20 items to pack

CableIf you are speaking on a regular basis, you get used to packing and unpacking everything that you need for your presentations. However, it is very easy to leave something small behind that you really need!

I have my own checklist of stuff that I always take with me. I use some of them at almost every presentation, and some items (such as spare extension cables) are for “just in case”.

So, here are some things that you may consider adding to your checklist.

  1. Laptop
  2. Wireless (presenter) mouse
  3. Power cables
  4. Extension cables
  5. Multi-plugs
  6. Adapters & cables (USB, network, audio etc)
  7. Masking tape
  8. Presentation on CD, laptop & memory stick
  9. Backup copy of presentation in separate bag
  10. Venue should supply – but check with them!
    • Projector
    • Screen
    • Microphone / AV gear
    • White-board
    • Flip-chart
  11. White-board / flip-chart pens
  12. Conference packs / handouts
  13. Back of room sales items (books, CD’s etc)
  14. Spare batteries
  15. Printout of presentation (just in case)
  16. Business cards
  17. Nametag
  18. Printed introduction (for the MC to use to introduce you)
  19. Change of clothing – in case somebody spills coffee all over you just before you speak
  20. Directions to venue!

What do you pack that is not on my list?

A small thing can have a huge impact – 20 logistical tips

ComputerA few years ago, I witnessed a really small thing having a huge impact on a presentation – in this case a negative impact.

Half way through the presentation I was attending, the presenters laptop died! It was not plugged into the wall, and the battery had gone flat. It took him over 15 minutes to find the power cable, get an extension cable, get AC power running and reboot his machine.

Of course, this ruined his presentation. This would not have happened if he had done a little more preparation (personally my recommendation is that if this does happen, just abandon the laptop and continue without it, or get somebody else to resolve the problem while you carry on with your presentation).

Would you like that to happen to you – well I hope not! Remember, that the best speeches can be ruined because the speaker forgot some seemingly minor details. So, here are 20 things to help you to give a smooth presentation.

  1. Arrive early
  2. if you can, do a dry run the night before at the venue
  3. Check out the stage and seating – change if necessary
  4. Smaller is bigger – rather speak in a small room that is full than a large room that looks empty
  5. Find out what time of day you are speaking
  6. Find out when in the programme you are speaking?
  7. Find out who is speaking before/after you
  8. What are their topics?
  9. Send your slides to the meeting organizer ahead of time – check that he/she gets them
  10. Send your audio/video (AV) requirements to the meeting organizer beforehand
  11. Create a checklist of what you need to bring, and use it
  12. Get to know the audio-visual guy – he will assist you with any technical issues – such as where the plugs are
  13. Ensure that you know how the microphone works
  14. Ensure that there is a NEW battery in the microphone
  15. Test all equipment beforehand
  16. Switch off screen-savers and power-saving options on your laptop
  17. Don’t run a laptop off the battery – use the AC power
  18. Give yourself plenty of time to setup – you don’t want to be setting up when the audience starts to arrive
  19. Have a bottle of still water handy (pref. at room temperature) – it is great to moisten your throat
  20. Have a backup plan for when things go wrong, and sooner or later they will!

What tips should I add to the list?

16 Free self-development newsletters

Newsletter_2One of the characteristics of great leaders, is that they are always learning, and always improving themselves. Well, here is an opportunity for self-improvement from some world leaders.

It it a list of 16 free great self-development email newsletters that I found. It includes the likes of Brian Tracey, Dr Judith Orloff, Guy Finley, Dale Carnegie, Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, Anthony Robbins, Stephen Covey and Tom Hopkins.

Some of the newsletters are:

Self Help Books Weekly Newsletter
If you read Self Improvement Books, this free newsletter is for you. Information on new book releases, best sellers, book reviews, excerpts, special promotions, interviews with the authors & more.   
Personal Success Secrets from Brian Tracy
Personal Success Secrets and special recommendations from Brian Tracy Learn how to set and achieve your goals faster than ever before. Subscribe to receive your FREE weekly newsletters from Brian Tracy.
Dr. Judith Orloff’s Positive Energy and Intuition Newsletter
Psychiatrist and best-selling author Judith Orloff MD offers this free e-newsletter which focuses on empowering your intuition, energy, freeing yourself from negative emotions, and conquering stress and fatigue. You’ll receive FREE mini video classes and state of the art information on blending body, mind and spirit.
Today Is Your Day To Win" E-course
A real life rags to riches story, Mike Brescia delivers 99 laser-focused, no holds barred coaching sessions to help you make today and the rest of your life a stunning success. This one of a kind mental conditioning course is a powerhouse. 
Home Business Newsletter
Receive Free Articles and updates on Starting and Growing a Home Business. Includes information on Sales, Marketing, using the Internet, Network Marketing Opportunities, Franchises, Business Plans and much more. Includes reviews and motivation to help you with your home business. 
Fulfill the True Purpose of Your Life
Best-selling "Letting Go" author, Guy Finley, reveals amazing secrets for stress-free, fearless living. Receive inspirational weekly messages, plus deep discounts on today’s most powerful self-improvement materials in Guy Finley’s FREE "Key Lesson" e-mails. Exclusively from non-profit Life of Learning Foundation.   
Selling and Sales Skills Newsletter
Contains articles, and information on sales skills and improving your sales productivity. Expert tips, tools and information to assist you with you sales career.   
Brain Improvement and IQ Test Newsletter
Newsletter on a variety of topics including IQ Tests, Brain Enhancement, Speed Reading, Memory Improvement, and Creativity. Contains up to date information on IQ Tests and EQ Tests on the web.
You can view the complete list and subscribe to any of the newsletters here from a single webpage.

I have subscribed to a few of them and I will let you know how there are.  Please tell me what you think!



70 Great Public Speaking Blogs

I came across a great list on Andrew Dlugan’s website of 70 blogs about Public Speaking. So, if you are looking for some really great tips to add humour to your speeches, use PowerPoint, or even improve your grammer, this is a great place to start.

RSS Logo For those of you using news readers, Andrew has kindly provided an OPML file that you can just import directly.


How quickly does an audience judge a speaker?

I have just finished reading Blink, by Malcolm Gladwell. Simplistically speaking, the book is about how we make snap judgments and decisions in the blink of an eye. The book itself is very interesting, and well worth reading, however it raised an interesting question.

How quickly does an audience judge a speaker?

My suspicion is that the audience have decided whether to listen to you or to switch off within the first 30 seconds of your presentation. So, the challenge is how are you going to grab their attention in those first few seconds? Here are three ideas:

  1. Start with a powerful question (have you ever?.?)
  2. Start with a powerful statement (in 5 years time, 1/5 of this audience will have been laid off?).
  3. Let them know what is in it for them (today you will learn three ways to increase sales?)

Here?s what not to say:

  1. I am so happy be here (clich?)
  2. I am going to tell you (rather use ?you will learn? ? speak to the audience)
  3. When I wrote my speech this morning (shows a lack of preparation)

The trick is to keep your introductions sharp, and to grap the attention of your audience as soon as you can.

Enjoy the book.