On September 2, 2023, I participated in the TedX auditions in Gothenburg, Sweden. I chose these auditions to develop myself as a speaker in our new homeland. After all, TedX is a globally recognized and valued platform. It seemed like an excellent opportunity to test and improve my speaking skills. Moreover, I saw it as a chance to establish valuable connections in a country where I hardly know anyone.
Despite the limited preparation time, I incorporated my personal story into a short 5-minute Ted talk. Upon arrival, I immediately met several inspiring individuals who were also seeking professional and personal growth.
I was one of the last to share my story. This allowed me to learn a lot from the presentations of others, both from their strengths and their mistakes. Below, I share the key lessons on inspiring presentations that I learned from this audition.
Speaker tips from my TedX audition
1. No Script: Avoid a written script and focus on a strong idea. A perfect story might make a good article, but it’s not the foundation for an inspiring presentation. Work on a powerful idea that you can explain briefly and concisely.
2. Focus on the Audience: Too many speakers concentrate solely on their story and neglect the audience.
3. Connect: Try to establish a rapport with your listeners.
4. Engage Your Audience: Your message should resonate and evoke emotions.
5. Be Spontaneous: Scripted presentations can sometimes feel impersonal. Dare to deviate and be in the moment.
6. Stay Authentic: People value genuineness. Be yourself on stage.
7. Inspire with Your Heart: Inspiration doesn’t just come from words but primarily from your heart and passion.
Education without application is just entertainment.
Presenting for TedX is challenging
The TEDx stage, especially the open audition, is challenging due to the lack of structure and expectations. Good ideas sometimes receive little response because you don’t know what the audience is interested in. It’s essential to connect with the audience and make your message universal. So, use few words, lots of emotion, and connect.
Inspiring presentation by David Palm
The most inspiring and high-quality presentation, in my opinion, was by David Palm. David told me beforehand that he has been a member of Toastmasters, a network club for speakers, for years. David’s 5-minute presentation was technically and content-wise perfect. David’s talk was about the fact that while we pay daily attention to our physical health, like dental health by brushing our teeth for at least 2 minutes a day, we don’t pay attention to our mental health. From his story, I can derive the following presentation lessons:
1. Use a simple message that touches the audience and is easy to remember. And repeat it several times.
2. Speak slowly. Use few words to convey your message.
3. Focus on the audience, not just on yourself.
4. Think carefully about that one short catchy message.
5. Visualize your message with a simple object or a compelling image.
If you need help preparing a stunning presentation, please let me know. I can help you prepare and practice for your important presentation.