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She who tells the best story wins.

Palin’s Problem Really Isn’t Her (Mis)understanding of American History

It’s that she strings together random words in the hope that they will turn into a sentence.

She really needs to work on answering questions off the cuff. She sounds dumb, even when she does know what she’s talking about (although to my reading of her statements, that seems to happen infrequently).

Palin is such an interesting conundrum on so many levels, but especially as a communicator. On the one hand, she has undeniable star power. Watching her give a good speech is electrifying, even if you disagree with everything she is saying. And she knows how to play to her base. The bullsh*it about the “lamestream media” and “gotcha” questions is completely manipulative.

But then you watch her try to answer a simple question off-the-cuff and she completely discombulates.

At the end of the day, she just doesn’t sound like a President. And that, more than anything, will (likely) mean she never will be.

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Filed under: Politics, Public Speaking

Being a Better Public Speaker Is Child’s Play

Want to be a better public speaker? Read to your kids. Don’t have kids? Borrow some.

Like a lot of things in life the best way to get better at public speaking is to practice. But unless you are pursuing speaking engagements as a professional activity there’s only so much real world practice you can get.

But reading – out loud – comes pretty close. Reading is different from talking. And children’s books are great – if you get a good one they have good rhythm and pace. Dr. Suess is great for really loosening up your tongue.

It also helps to read the same story over and over and over (which is very easy to do if you have a toddler. “No Mommy, read this one again!”). After a couple readings you need to do something to keep from losing your mind, so you play with the voices, vary the pace and pitch. You start to play with the story and, in turn, play with your voice.

Try it.

Have you got an unusual trick for improving your public speaking skills? Post it below!

Filed under: Public Speaking

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