Stage Time: Are You a Speaking Virtuoso?

I sat there in the audience at the National Speakers Association Convention and prepared to watch my friend, Mike Rayburn, CSP, CPAE, give his speech. He was about to perform his brand new keynote that he had been working on for over eleven months, some 1,100 hours. His preparation was intense. I can honestly say that I don’t personally know of anyone who had prepared as much as Mike had for that... [Read more]

Stage Time: Pigheaded Progress?

Has technology ever stressed you out? LOL. OK, maybe that is a silly question. I cringe whenever a technical support person uses the word “just.” They say, “Just do this and that will happen.” It sounds easy until you go home and try to do it, and some other foreign looking screen comes up with a different question you are clueless about. Argh! I’m an Apple product fan. I love my MacBook... [Read more]

Stage Time: Is Your Pause Potent?

You may have said it, but did they feel it? When you were on stage presenting, did the audience actually feel what you were saying? That might sound like a weird question. It is not. This weekend my girlfriend Cathey and I were filming a YouTube video. I was behind the camera, and she was teaching a marketing principle in front of the camera. At one location we moved around an enormous parking lot... [Read more]

Stage Time: Speech Competitors Must Hear This Rock Star’s Brilliance

It is that time of year again when eighty-one of the top speech competitors from around the world prepare for the biggest speech of their lives. They are the semi-finalists competing in this year’s World Championship of Public Speaking. There are also thousands of speech competitors who are licking their wounds wondering where they went wrong or worse, blaming the judges. Otis William’s Jr.’s... [Read more]

Stage Time: To-Do to To-DONE!

How long is your “to-do” list? Maybe, if you are like me, a better question is how many lists do you have?  I started finding that I had “to-dos” to remind me to check other “to-do” lists. Yikes! I found I was soon forgetting my master “to-do” list. Ugh. Something’s got to give. I don’t know about you, but when I get overwhelmed, I tend to shut down. That doesn’t relieve stress,... [Read more]

Stage Time: What Do You Need to Become?

Can you remember a time when you had a great plan, and you were working it? You were making progress, you were performing your due diligence, and out of nowhere, BAM! Someone gives you a whole new perspective. I learned a brilliant perspective that changed how I look at many areas of my life. Are you a fan of positive affirmations and writing out goals? Me, too. You may also know that I’ve never... [Read more]

Stage Time: Really, Why Bother?

How long is your “to do” list? How do you decide what is worth your time and what is not? Time is precious. Sometimes I wonder, why bother? How do you know if it is worth the struggle. “Why haven’t you gotten your C.S.P.?” It is a question I’ve been hearing for years. Some of my support team were there at the N.S.A. Convention in San Diego to celebrate with me. The... [Read more]

Darren’s God Blog II: King Solomon and Me

As I continue my own walk with God, inspired by my pastor, I’ve been reading two Bible verses every morning. I actually started at the beginning and have been pretty good at keeping my personal commitment. I do not claim to be an expert in this area. I’m just giving honest insight into my own journey, and I hope it helps others. Have you read the Bible and been confused? OK, if you are like me... [Read more]

Stage Time: You Can’t Change Their Lives, But You Can…

Many aspiring speakers live for changing people’s lives. We can’t. Period. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. Why would I say that? I just want you to think a bit deeper about what a presenter’s role is when we get the privilege of the platform. Everyone in your audience is living their journey with momentum. Their momentum could be good or bad, positive or negative, slow or fast. It is their... [Read more]

Stage Time: Speech Writing Box-ology: Think INSIDE the Box!

Too many people, when putting a presentation together, try to write the whole thing out. If your presentations are done with slides, you know the crutch of putting one together by taking an old slide deck, and just “tweaking” it. Guilty? I know I am. My corporate coaching clients are the worst! A brilliant presentation is clean, clear and concise. It is built from scratch (even if you are... [Read more]