Monday, 18 May 2009

How do you approach presentations?

One of today's jobs is working on a keynote I'm going to be giving next month to the national conference of the English National Youth Arts Network. (This is a 'youth-led conference' and they seem to be getting revenge for something as they've set me what one member of our team called an A level question about 'Youth Enterprise, Innovation and Leadership within the Cultural Industries:' as the theme.) Anyway, as luck would have it, looking for something else I came across these 10 commandments from the TED Conferences for good presentations. (Apparently TED speakers get sent them on an actual tablet of stone...) I can't think of a conference I've ever attended that wouldn't have been improved if every speaker had followed them.

So here's what I shall be trying to live up to:

1. Thou Shalt Not Simply Trot Out thy Usual Shtick.
2. Thou Shalt Dream a Great Dream, or Show Forth a Wondrous New Thing, Or Share Something Thou Hast Never Shared Before.
3. Thou Shalt Reveal thy Curiosity and Thy Passion.
4. Thou Shalt Tell a Story.
5. Thou Shalt Freely Comment on the Utterances of Other Speakers for the Sake of Blessed Connection and Exquisite Controversy.
6. Thou Shalt Not Flaunt thine Ego. Be Thou Vulnerable. Speak of thy Failure as well as thy Success.
7. Thou Shalt Not Sell from the Stage: Neither thy Company, thy Goods, thy Writings, nor thy Desperate need for Funding; Lest Thou be Cast Aside into Outer Darkness.
8. Thou Shalt Remember all the while: Laughter is Good.
9. Thou Shalt Not Read thy Speech.
10. Thou Shalt Not Steal the Time of Them that Follow Thee.

Meantime I'm interested in experiences of how different generations work together leading arts projects and organisations, as well as how 'young leaders' operate in their own spheres. If you've any stories to tell, let me know.


Anonymous said...

How true! This is applicable to many occaisions: board meetings (I have one today), weddings, poetry readings... Thanks Mark.

adam Lopardo said...

Very True, you should attend the Thinking Digital Conference next year,, just been described as the TED conference for the UK and indeed none of the speakers were boring.