Book – The Gift of the Gab by David Crystal

Book – The Gift of the Gab by David Crystal

The book I first came across when the author appeared at Birmingham Literature Festival a few years ago finally made it into my home.

His talk is so full of good tips on being articulate that I decided there and then that I’ll buy the book later as a business tool. Not that I do public speaking as such – I so dislike talks – however, I do get paid to train.

David Crystal advises to start with a story although say something trivial at the start as attention span arises shortly after. ‘Then something important as attention is at its peak. It rises at the end so say something important then too, ie summary of learning.’

He also maintains that most people can remember 5 chunks of info and saying something in breathy voice (whispering) involves audience. They’ll remember it.

People will forget what you said

They will forget what you did

But they will never forget how you made them feel – Maya Angelou

The author refers to President Obama’s inauguration speak so much he prints it in full at the back of the book. Similarly, Martin Luther King’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech.

I love that the author introduced me to a sub-genre of death by PowerPoint – Karaoke PowerPoint. This is when the ‘presenter’ just reads out the words on the screen and  is what I’ve fallen asleep to, mainly in corporate situations.

On top of all the great tips, somehow while reading this book I had the good idea of keeping my training notes on Slides rather than Evernote,  so can swipe to next page rather than having to keep finding my place in my commentary.


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