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Knowledge is Power

Last week I gave a talk at David Siteman Garland’s RISE Lunch, and my subject matter was a topic that’s very near and dear to my heart.  The title of my presentation was “Building Communities With Twitter, Facebook, and Blogs – Why Bother?”  It was to be a 15 minute presentation. I threw together my Powerpoint presentation (the first one I’ve ever built, actually).

Here’s where things get weird. I don’t do alot of public speaking.  I had a friend get married in 2001 and I was Best Man, and that speech almost killed me.  I was so bloody nervous, I couldn’t even enjoy myself at the reception.  Last week, as I prepared for the speech, as the speech approached, as I sat at the lunch waiting for my turn, as people kept asking “Are you nervous? Are you nervous?” and as I delivered the speech that ran for 25 minutes……. I was not nervous.  Not at all.  What is UP with that?

Here’s the link to the podcast.

Let me know what you guys think – has anyone else had a similarly notable experience when publicly speaking?


  1. Hi Chris.
    I used to do a LOT of public speaking. I can remember when I first started it almost did me in! But after a couple of good experiences, and usually talking about what I was passionate about (and pretty much an expert compared to 90% of my audience) my confidence shot up and it became so much easier. As people asked me to speak at programs, trade shows, etc. I just always said YES then figured it out later. After I figured out I could speak to about 500 women at a cow barn (big sewing expo in Puyallup, WA) without a mic, and my audience did not walk out the door, I knew I could do this! Keep at it. You were great Tuesday….you definitely get my vote…and you have tons to share that your are passionate about. :)

  2. Thanks Cindy!

  3. jonfalk says:

    Your speech at the reception was great…I still remember the upper hand comment.

    Fact is, when you know what you are talking about, people can tell. It shows up in the perspective you provide and the way you can help people understand how your ideas were formed.

  4. It's amazing how much easier public speaking is when you are talking about a subject you are passionate and knowledgeable about — great podcast Chris.


  5. fredemiller says:


    When's your next speech?

    Seriously, you should try to book more of them.

    People now see you as an expert, and perception is reality! And most of us rather deal with experts.

    The fact that you were not nervous is great, and it was your knowledge of the subject and passion for it, that helped you succeed.

    I also assume, since you had 24 slides, that you practiced.

    Practice, Practice and Practice some more! The road to perfection never ends.


  6. OMG I don't even remember what I said. My memory sucks! Time for some old man drinks, and you remind me what I said in that speech

  7. You are so right… you do some speaking, correct?

  8. Absolutely, I speak as much as I possibly can — always looking for more opportunities.

  9. I actually didn't practice at all. I think that's why it accidentally went 25 minutes instead of 15 minutes. David caned me afterwards and told me to never run 10 minutes long again.

    (actually, he said great job)

    I will look to give more talks – it's in the works. Great idea Fred!

  10. David Siteman Garland says:

    You rocked it, Chris. Video soon :)

  11. David Siteman Garland says:

    C'mon now, haha. I could have listened to you all day…and we would have been there till 6 PM :)

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