public speaking

3 Things Every Presenter Can Learn From James Bond [VIDEO]

Recently, the latest James Bond film, Skyfall, was released. While some thought it wasn't that great, I loved it. It's safe to say I've loved every Bond film I've ever seen. And with the exception of a couple absolute duds, I am a big 007 fan. After seeing Skyfall, a friend mentioned that every Bond film is basically the same old storyline. I don't disagree, but it's what works. I then got to thinking what a systematic character James Bond is and how we could probably learn a few things about presentations from him.

The point is we all need someone to look to for motivation or inspiration. Hopefully, one of these tips will help you improve your presentations.

Let's have a look at three things you can learn from James Bond in the following video. The full transcript is below the video. If you can't see YouTube in your location, click the following link to download the video: 3 Things Every Presenter Can Learn From James Bond

Here are the links mentioned in the video:

  1. Gavin McMahon on understanding what the audience really wants
  2. Craig Hadden on opening PowerPoint automagically before giving a presentation

I have been a James Bond fan ever since I can remember. I've always loved the car chases, the cool gadgets, and who doesn't like the Bond girls, right? But on top of all that, I've always thought that James Bond is such a cool dude. Not only is he highly-skilled in driving, skiing, the martial arts and ahem…

Seducing Bond girls, he does everything while always remaining cool and in control. He's even cool just saying his own name!

Bond, James Bond.

How many people can do that?

Obviously, I can't.

But I also realized that he would be an awesome presenter. So I'm going to teach you "Three Things Every Presenter Can Learn From James Bond."

Number one.

James Bond can handle any situation, enemy, or Bond girl because he's not only well-trained, but he's also well-prepared. He's practiced his skills over and over so that it seems almost effortless when he's out in the field.

I realize of course that it's just make believe, but hey, it's my video.

Anyway, before he goes out on a mission, he always knows who he will go up against and what the goal of his mission is.

As a presenter, you also have to be well-prepared by starting your preparation early and leaving at least a couple of weeks to practice so you can deliver your presentation as effortlessly as 007 skis backwards and shoots bad guys with his ski pole slash gun.

And you also absolutely have to learn about your audience and what the goal of the presentation is going to be. Just remember that your goal and the audience's goal is usually not the same so make sure you know what the audience wants. In fact, you never want to give a presentation without clearly understanding who your audience is and what they want.

Gavin McMahon gave a great technique for doing this in the interview he did for me, so check out that video.

Number two.

No matter how many bad guys there are, no matter how dangerous the situation, or how close a laser comes to cutting him in half starting from the family jewels, James Bond remains cool under fire. He could be shaking and screaming like a little girl on the inside, but he always maintains a calm and cool exterior.

As a presenter, you may sometimes be very nervous, your throat might feel tight and dry, and your hands and legs can't stop shaking…

In other words, you're totally freaking out.

The interesting thing is that most of the time, the audience doesn't notice. And because of that, don't make the mistake of telling the audience how nervous you are, since they probably don't even know.

But if you're presenting for the first time, your voice might betray you and reveal your secret like a double agent in a Bond movie. So what you have to do is remember the first thing I said about preparing well in advance. In fact, it'd be a great idea to make a video of yourself giving the presentation so you can get instant feedback and work on being more calm.

Another thing you can do is speak a little slower because when we're nervous or excited, we tend to speak faster and faster, which is not good for a presentation because your audience is going to have trouble listening. And also remember to take nice, even breaths. Just focusing on breathing can help you calm down and remain cool under fire like 007.

 And number three.

007 is famous for having the coolest gadgets to help him defeat his enemies or get out of trouble, like the ski pole slash gun I mentioned earlier. But having cool gadgets is one thing, knowing how to use them is another. Luckily for our super-spy, he's able to figure out how things work even though he tends to do what most guys do and ignore instructions on how to use the stuff.

However, as a presenter, it is extremely important that you know how to operate the equipment you will use when giving a presentation. Make sure you know how to turn on your laptop and how to connect it to a projector.

You should know how to start PowerPoint and get your presentation going in the shortest time possible.For that, you should check out my friend Craig Hadden's post on how to set up PowerPoint for Windows so your presentation opens up automagically when you turn on your laptop.

And if you're going to use a presentation remote control, please make sure you've got fresh batteries in it and make sure you've got spare batteries, too.

One final thing to say about knowing your presentation tools is to also know what to do if something goes wrong, like if the location has incompatible plugs, or the projector suddenly stops working or something. You should consider what to do as a backup in case something bad happens before or during your presentation.

There you go, three things every presenter can learn from James Bond.

And to recap, those three things were:

  • Number one, be well prepared and know your audience.
  • Number two, remain cool under fire because the audience likely doesn't know how nervous you are.
  • And number three, know your presentation tools and have a backup plan, just in case.

Okay, so my question for you this week is, "Which fictional character do you think would be a great presenter and why?" Let me know by leaving your answer in the comments section below.

Thank you for watching and talk to you again soon.

The one about storytelling & overcoming the fear of public speaking

This was my second time on tbs eFM's 1013 Main Street Leadership Lab and I continued the topic from the previous week, which was about presentations and public speaking. In this one, I talk about using different types of stories and then give some tips on how to overcome the fear of public speaking. If you like, you can read a summary of what I said below... And if you're really keen on getting the biggest bang for your buck, then scroll down to the bottom of the page and check out the special offer I have for new clients.

Listen here:

Carl Kwan talks about overcoming fear in presentations

Here's what I covered:

6 Types of Stories:

  1. Stranger in a strange land - Like when you or your business goes into a new business area
  2. Revenge - Rallying the troops to get them fired up about beating the competition
  3. Love - Good for talking about establishing new relationships, like in an M&A, or starting something new and exciting, like a product launch
  4. Rags to riches - Good storytelling style for entrepreneurs to talk about how they got started and their path to success
  5. Quest - Perfect for talking about making a new discovery, like a breakthrough invention or new drug or something else exciting that you discovered
  6. Hero's journey - The classic! The one you use when you want to talk about doing something you didn't intend, but then realized it was what you were meant to do. You can use this one for how you started your business or career and not knowing where it would take you or what would happen.

The main thing about storytelling is to tell of the struggles and the triumphs over those struggles.

People love a good story. And when it's your own and you have a passion for your story, you will be able to tell it without feeling all nervous.

But before I got to the overcoming-the-fear-of-public-speaking-part of the show, I talked about quickly engaging your audience by not using an agenda slide or self-introduction.

Instead, use a factoid or rhetorical question and then get right to your story. The important thing to remember is to make it about the audience. Always remember to answer this question in their head:

"Why should I care?"

You can do this by pointing out a problem that's bothering them and that only you can solve. You want to spend as much time describing the problem as fixing it because this will help you to engage their emotions and intellect.

Then I talked about how you should outline the solution to their problem. You want to explain in a simple way how you can help them. Don't make it hard for them to understand or vague. Be really specific.

Finally, give them an action step, make them do something NOW, in the room while you have their attention and you've gotten them interested in your solution.

And that was basically it for that part. Next I talked about...

How to overcome the fear of speaking publicly

Like most fears, the fear of public speaking comes from habit, past experience, or no experience. So I outlined a solution that I cleverly called...

The 4 Vs to Overcoming Fear of Public Speaking:

  1. Visualization & affirmation: Getting a mental movie of yourself giving your speech or presentation perfectly and using affirmations to help your subconscious prepare you for the task.
  2. Verbalization: Don't just practice silently to yourself; instead, practice like you're doing it for real, out loud.
  3. Videoization: The only way to see how you're doing and improve is to actually see yourself. This is especially important for checking your body language because of how much non-verbal communication goes on between us mammals. So, pull out the iPhone or other camcorder and shoot a video of yourself giving your speech. It would help to have a friend or consultant (like me!), giving you feedback because you might think you look perfectly fine. This actually happened with a client until I pointed out several bad mannerisms and how quietly he spoke.
  4. Varyization: Get lots of real practice giving speeches and presentations and talking about various topics... hence, "varyization" :)

So if you or your business is struggling with coming up with ways to tell your story, try out what I said here.

But for real help, get in touch with me and I'll be able to really nail down what story you should be telling and how to grab people by the seat of their pants and get them to listen...

And then get them to take action, like buying your stuff or paying you mega-millions (hopefully) for your services. 

We can help you do that in presentations, videos, sales letters and other cool stuff... So you can sell more of your stuff... Faster. If this sounds good, then let's talk.

If you're a first-time client, we've got a special offer for you...

A 30 second video about your business for only $500... A total bargain considering a lot of places charge $3000 per minute! We'll write the script, do an awesome voiceover (my voice!), and put together a killer video that you can also use as a PowerPoint presentation... minus the awesome voiceover, unless you want to pay me to do the presentation for you :)

Call me... My number is +82-10-9087-2086 internationally or 010-9087-2086 here in Seoul. Or you can email us by clicking here: Let's talk