When I first became an entrepreneur, I was inspired by numerous TEDx talks. I watched talks on TED.com about various subjects and ideas people shared. Fast-forward to 4 months ago, and I was invited to deliver a TED talk of my own.
While I was humbled by the opportunity, I was anxious to deliver a stellar talk. I had done many public speaking events in the past, but there was something different about TEDx. It wasn’t going to be as easy as the other talks and it became evident early on.
In this article, I’m going to share how to prepare and deliver a TEDx talk.
I was one of the last invited to give a TEDx talk at Bommer Canyon, which is located in Orange County. I received my invitation in August, but the meat of my talk wouldn’t develop until mid September. The organizers were extremely passionate about giving the best possible show.
While they were picky, they sought perfection from every single one of their speakers. I got a group of people under the age of 25 and over the age of 25 to ask them various questions about their dreams and took note of everything they said before drafting it up into my speech.
The content of my speech took me about a month and a half to nail down. My initial ideas for a TED talk got shot down because the ideas weren’t unique and powerful enough. Finally, I decided that I wanted to see what dreams people have and what limits them.
After questioning the focus groups mentioned above, my discoveries were very interesting. I now had the content I needed for my TEDx talk, but that was only the beginning.
While most organizers hire you a for a speaking event solely based on the content or message of your talk, TEDx is very different. They value stage presence, articulation, movements, and interactions just as highly as they do the content of your talk.
I would spend the next month (2 days a week for 4 hours total) just practicing my stage presence. I not only had to deliver the words of my speech correctly, but I had to coordinate each action accordingly. While it was tough, I embraced the challenge.
While getting help from of the greatest speaking coaches in the business, I quickly realized that this preparation would help me for the rest of my life. After spending about 1 month perfecting the movements and delivery of my talk, I was ready for the big day!
The toughest challenge I had as a speaker was making the talk conversational. Throughout school, I was told to act prim and proper before delivering any speech. This idea had been engraved in my mind so it took quite a bit of time to throw out.
I knew the content of my speech inside and out, but I was a bit nervous about the delivery and conversational tone I needed to manage throughout my speech. The big day hit and I delivered my talk. I felt really good about it and everyone in the crowd said that I did well.
I was extremely thankful for the opportunity and I’ll let you be the judge of my talk yourself. You can view the talk below. This is a very powerful message I want to share with the world so if you do find inspiration from it, I would appreciate it if you could give it a share!