storytelling for public speaking

Public Speaking Tip to Keep Your Audience Engaged and Interested

Using your own personal stories is a wonderful way to connect with your audience and build rapport.

In particular, sharing times when you faced challenges and even failed helps those listening to relate.

Jinsop Lee dares to share his failures and skillfully injects personal stories throughout his speech, as follows:

  • “Back in university we had a quick project to design some solar-powered clocks…”
  • “I thought my idea was pretty good but his idea is genius…”

Jinsop leads the audience through a lively story of the solar-powered sunflower clock he designed, and then, in sharp comparison, the super-cool and sensory-filled, oil-scented contraption clock his colleague created using shot glasses and magnifying glasses. He confesses: “At the time I knew his idea was better than mine, but I just couldn’t explain why.”

He then offers the explanation – and the whole premise of his presentation – that it was engagement of all five senses that made the industrial design so good. In sharing this story, Jinsop shows that he wasn’t the best designer.

What personal stories can you use to keep your audience interested and engaged in your presentation?

Post by Marion Grobb Finkelstein, originally appeared on TED:ology – Presentation Secrets from TED Talks

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