The rambling thoughts of a Modern Orthodox Chassid (whatever that means). Contact me at emansouth @

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Public Speaking Training


As readers of this space know, I do a lot of public speaking. I speak in front of crowds ranging from 40 to 1000 people. I speak here in New York, in many cities across the country, in Europe and in Asia. I'm actually not too bad at it, if I do say so myself. And, since people keep asking me to speak, I suppose my self-assessment is more or less correct.

Nevertheless, management has decided that the executives in the firm should all undergo public speaking training. Hey, I thought, there's always room for improvement. Bring it at me!

What I wanted to do is have the trainer attend my next live gig, videotape it and criticize me based on my actual live performance. Makes sense, right? (Especially since my next gig is next week only two blocks from my office). A big part of my success as a public speaker is my ability to assess the crowd and draw energy from it. This would capture me in a realistic setting and would really be helpful.

But, of course, that's not what's going to happen. Instead, the trainer is coming to our office and will tape me giving a presentation to no one! I am quite sure that I will become all self-conscious and will be a disaster. There will be absolutely no value in this exercise.

I could be wrong. But I don't think I am.


Mercifully, my training session scheduled for tomorrow was postponed. With any luck, this will never happen.



  • At 9:55 PM, Blogger uberimma said…

    Yeah, you're right. The coach should see you speak in a real-life setting. I don't think that taping you in an office will be a valueless exercise, but it's what you should do after the coach sees you speak for real, so that you can work one-on-one on whatever you need to improve.

    I do this for a living, so have strong opinions...

  • At 10:01 AM, Blogger MoChassid said…


    That's exactly what I told her but I am being made to feel like a whiner. Which, in this case, I am.

  • At 12:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Companies love to have training but don't always care that it's done effectively.


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