Monday, November 30, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
When you speak, you have to bring more to your listeners than a charming personality and the latest in clothing fashion. You have to bring ideas. Ideas that enrich your listeners. The big surprise here is that—unless you are Albert Einstein or Bill Gates talking about something you know better than anybody else—your listeners are not really interested in your ideas. They are interested in the ideas you have gathered from others and are bringing to enrich them.
This is especially true in your efforts to persuade others. Listeners are enriched when you make supportable claims. Suppose you claim, "Our health care system is broken; universal health care will fix it." Have you enriched your listeners? Not really. You have merely expressed an opinion. You haven't improved your listeners' understanding of the issues or opened their eyes to new and helpful ways of viewing the world.
Contrast that with the following approach. "Our health care system is broken; universal health care will fix it. According to Dr. Patrick Whelan, M.D., and member of the Democratic National Committee's Faith Advisory Council, a 2002 Institutes of Medicine study concluded that health coverage for every citizen would mean fewer child deaths from asthma, fewer cancer deaths in minority communities, and fewer veterans who depend on emergency rooms for their primary care. You can read Dr. Whelan's entire statement at ourfamilydoctormag.com."
Now you have enriched your listeners. You brought with you to the podium the views of an eminent physician and you shared those. It's up to the listeners to decide what to do with the information. You have done your job.
Your greatest allies in persuasion are the words According to . . . . The persuasion one-two punch is: 1) make a powerful claim, and 2) provide support that the listeners cannot lightly dismiss. Claim-According to . . . . Claim-According to . . . Claim-According to . . . Get in that rhythm and you will find people flocking to your point of view. After all, t
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
- 5-6 minutes.
- Prove to your listeners that a problem exists and needs our united effort to solve.
- Suggest several potential solutions.
- Make a call to action.
Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
1. In which part of the speech should the speaker especially slow down, pause as needed, connect with the listeners, and give emphasis to the main points and thesis?
2. How long can the speaker expect the listener to wait for a statement of the thesis before the listener loses interest and goes on to thinking about something other than the speech?
3. Mary's speech focuses on how her mother's actions shaped her personality. What is the best speech design for Mary's speech?
4. As a speaker, you should be cautious about using which kind of attention getter?
You've found a topic that excites you.
Thesis sentence: “Pets teach children life's lessons.”
- “Pets teach children to deal with birth, illnesses, accidents, and death.”
- “Caring for pets teaches children responsibility.”
- “Children with pets learn to respect other living things.”
2. Preview the main points at the beginning of your speech. Review the main points at the end of your speech. This follows the old advice, "Tell them what you are going to tell them. Then tell them. Then tell them what you told them." That is sound advice.
1. Write your thesis statement .
2. Select two or three main points that support the thesis. These are also presented as full sentences.
3. Preview the main points in your introduction and review them in your conclusion, i.e., "Today I'm going to give you three reasons why you should get your child a pet. . . ." (Give the three reasons. Explain them in the body of speech. Move to the conclusion.) . . . . "Please remember these three reasons for having a pet. . . ." (Repeat the three reasons.)
It's so simple. And it works. You have just made it easy for your listeners to follow you by giving them a map. Well done.
Friday, September 18, 2009
In class, we mentioned from Chapter 6 how useful media prompts can be in finding interesting and timely topics for a speech. The video bar in the right-hand column provides a perfect example. In fact, it provides visual support for the idea we used as an idea example in the previous blog—violence begets violence. Try always to be alert to the ideas, topics, and support flowing past you in the media. Again these are called media prompts.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Fuzzy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Focused . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Friday, September 4, 2009
- present an idea
- provide support
- draw a conclusion
- Ideas clarify values.
- Support changes beliefs.
- Conclusions guide attitudes.
- Kids from privileged backgrounds get more breaks.
- It costs a lot to develop world-class talent.
- People with real talent get discovered early.
Researchers in psychology, politics, and persuasion suggest that attitudes are expressions of an intent or predisposition to act. If my present attitude or opinion is that its time for a change in America politics from the extreme right toward the left, then I am likely to vote for a Democrat in the next election. If my attitude about obesity is that the warnings are overblown, then I will continue to eat like I have and fail to protect my children against the dangers. Attitudes are part of the Values-Beliefs-Attitudes chain.
Values are our conclusions about the ideal world, how the world should be. Values are nearly fixed and highly resistant to change. Beliefs are our conclusions about how the world really is. Beliefs can be strengthened, modified, or dispelled by an infusion of additional relevant information. Attitudes are our inclinations to act on beliefs, given our values. Attitudes appear to be highly changeable. Attitudes are based on the momentary assessment of many factors bearing on a choice before us. The factors may be extremely complex and interactive. They may include all relevant values, all relevant beliefs, assessment of all incentives, disincentives, and obstacles, assessment of history and prophecy, levels of fear and self-confidence, hopes, dreams, desires, what we had for breakfast, and which way the wind is blowing. Based on those and many more factors processed instantaneously by our mental computers, we make our choices. With all that variability, it is no wonder that attitudes can change from moment to moment.
Having looked briefly at values, beliefs, and attitudes, it should be apparent that the keys to successful pubic speaking are the abilities to understand universal human values, form and dispel beliefs, and influence attitudes. In doing so, we help to shape listener choices.
Write down a value that is very important to you at the moment. Look back to the blog "Ain't No Big Mystery" for a partial list. The value you are writing down represents an ideal, one of the ways you conclude that things should be.
Now, next to that value write how you think things really are. If they fit the ideal, great. If not, how do they differ from the ideal? For example, if your value is human equality, you might write these beliefs:
Value: Human Equality
- More minorities are prosecuted and imprisoned for crimes than Caucasians.
- Fewer minorities go on to college.
- More minorities live below the poverty line.
Then write down your attitude, i.e., what you believe we should do about the conditions you believe to exist. For example,
Attitude: We should lobby for better enforcement of Equal Opportunity legislation.
Try this pattern with two or three values until you can see clearly how values, beliefs, and attitudes relate.
© Frank Richardson, 2009.