TED TALK: The secret structure of great talks
by Nancy Duarte
1. Follow the path of
Show “what is”1
and end with a
“new bliss” that
is the result of
Speak in a deeper voice.
Deeper voices are
associated with authority.
The way your voice feels.
People prefer rich,
smooth and warm voices.
The melody of how we
speak. Avoid monotone.
Varying the speed of
your speech in a
Similar to pace,
varying pitch can
change the feeling or
message that comes
from a statement.
The use of loud and soft
speech can add
emphasis or cause your
audience to listen
TED TALK: How to speak so that people want to listen by Julian Treasure
2. Use the tools in your vocal toolbox
TED TALK: The best stats you’ve ever seen
by Hans Rosling
3. Be engaged
Be familiar enough with your presentation so
that you can be excited and animated while
you present, rather than just reading
information from a screen. In doing this, your
audience will want to stay engaged with you.
Know your data and be excited about it
TED TALK: How to pitch to a VC by David S. Rose
4. Keep their attention
Research shows that people’s
attention spans start to drop off
after about 18 minutes.
Keep it short
Use headlines instead
of bullet points.
Use images. Give them a broad
idea, but keep them focused on you.
Do’s and Don’ts
TED TALK: How great leaders inspire action
by Simon Sinek
5. “The Golden Circle”
what people do
why they do it
how they do it
The “Golden Circle” discusses three
topics that come up in presentations:
The most common practice is to present them in
that order; however, several successful people have
presented them in the opposite order. This allows
the audience to connect more deeply with the idea.
TED TALK: Once upon a time, my mother... by
Carmen Agra Deedy
6. Connect with
Allow for interaction within the presentation.
Draw parallels between your topic and the audience by
presenting familiar situations in a relatable way.
Deedy tells a simple story about an outing
to the store with her mother, she ﬁnds
connecting points with the audience and
creates an interesting tale from something
that could easily be seen as mundane.
TED TALK: Your body language shapes who you are by Amy Cuddy
7. Body language
Body language affects our behaviors.
For example, we smile when we’re happy, but
we also feel happier when we smile.
Keep your posture open and spread out,
rather than hunched over and closed off.
An experiment was performed wherein people were randomly asked to hold
specific poses that, unknown to the subjects, had been classified as “high
power” and “low power,” then held those poses for two minutes.
Those who took the “high power” poses experienced a
signiﬁcant increase and decrease in hormones that
promote feelings of dominance and stress, respectively,
while those who took “low power” poses experienced
the opposite effect.
TED TALK: How I beat stage fright by Joe Kowan
8. Break the ice
Joe Kowan talks about his struggles with stage fright as he
worked to become a folk singer. Eventually, he wrote a
song about stage fright and how he was feeling. Doing this,
he connected with the audience, and they were able to
feel more comfortable watching him, because they no
longer had to feel uncomfortable for him.
This follows along with the practice of
telling a joke before a talk, or even poking
gentle fun at oneself in moderation.ha