What Are You Doing to Become a Better Speaker?

When I was twenty-years-old, I participated in a summer missions trip in Galveston, Texas. I was assigned to assist the pastor of a small Baptist church. I thought I would mostly be helping with the youth program.

A Podium with Speaker Notes - Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/DSGpro, Image #2948214

Photo courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/DSGpro

About two weeks into this project, the pastor announced that he would be out-of-town the next Sunday. He asked me to preach on his behalf. I was thunderstruck.

“What?” I stammered. “I have never spoken in public, let alone preached!”

“No problem,” he insisted. “You’ll do fine.” And with that, he turned around and walked out the door.

I wanted to throw-up. I studied all week. I wrote and re-wrote my sermon. I practiced in front of a mirror. Sunday eventually came, and I delivered my sermon. It wasn’t great, but it was okay. I was just glad I didn’t embarrass myself too badly.

Since then, I’ve spoken hundreds of times. I am sure I have improved over the years. I know I have gained more confidence. And, now, I do it for a living.

But last spring I attended the Dynamic Communicators Workshop (DCW) led by Ken Davis, one of the country’s most sought-after inspirational and motivational speakers, and several master speaking coaches.

Oh. My. Gosh. If I had only taken this course thirty years earlier!

Ken shared a speech preparation system called SCORRE™ that has revolutionized my public presentations. It has:

  • dramatically reduced my prep time
  • made me more clear and focused
  • increased my ability to connect with the audience
  • made my speeches more impactful

In short, it has taken my speaking to the next level. (You can find other benefits here.)

I still have room to grow, but I feel like I have improved more in the last few months than I did in the last three decades. I am not exaggerating. In fact, I am even using the SCORRE™ method in my blogging. It is that effective.

The next DCW is scheduled for October 17–21, 2011 in beautiful Vail, Colorado. I would strongly encourage you to attend. I am going myself.

Becoming a better public speaker is important for almost every career. Whether you are in middle management, a corporate executive, a pastor, or an author, DCW can make you a better, more polished communicator.

In addition to the standard DCW conference, Ken is introducing the DCW Premiere Experience for the first time in October. I am especially excited about this. It includes an extra day for those who want to get even more out of their investment.

DCW Premier adds more content, more coaching, and more expertise from special guest speakers. I will be personally teaching on how to use technology to streamline your preparation and empower your delivery.

In addition, I am going to be hosting a special luncheon on Thursday, October 20th, exclusively for those who register with the code HYATTLUNCH. During this time, I will present a bonus session entitled, “How to Create a Killer Speaking Page for Your Blog or Website.” It is based on what I have learned from researching the best practices of the world’s most in-demand speakers.

Don’t miss this opportunity to invest in your career and your future. If you don’t come in October, you will likely wait another six months for this opportunity. You can register here and get the exclusive session with me.

Question: What have you done recently to invest in your speaking effectiveness? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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  • http://www.warriorshepherd.com/blog Dave Hearn

    Speak, speak, speak.  Practice often and take every opportunity, especially those where I think I am out of my element.   

    I would love to take advantage of this workshop and lunch session, unfortunately I live in Spain and can’t make the trip.  

    But I promise to take every opportunity to speak and hone my skills!

    (P.S. If you plan on making a video of the lunch session available, that sounds like it would be worth purchasing… just an idea…)

    • http://www.sundijo.com Sundi Jo Graham

      Great idea about the video!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks for the idea, Dave. That could be a helpful video.

    • Jmhardy97

      great idea!


    • Joe Lalonde

      You’re right Dave. Speak, speak, speak is a great way to improve your speaking. Even if you’re horrible at it, it will improve the more you do it.

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      True! Practice makes perfection.

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      I agree with the video idea.

  • http://www.sundijo.com Sundi Jo Graham

    Sounds like a great workshop. I’ve been slacking in my practice and need to get back into it. But one of the biggest ways I keep communicating is by at least blogging. 

    Do you know if they offer scholarships for this conference?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I am not sure. You might try to contact someone there.

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com Michele Cushatt

      Yes, we do have a limited number of scholarships available. To apply, contact Joy at Joy@KenDavis.com. Hope to see you there, Sundi Jo!

      • http://www.warriorshepherd.com/blog Dave Hearn

        Would your scholarships include airfare from Spain?  just sayin’ … ;^)

        • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com Michele Cushatt

          You can always dream, my friend. Maybe if you included an all expenses paid place to stay in Spain for my husband and I … just sayin’ :)

      • Jmhardy97

        Thanks Michele,

        I will share this with others.


        • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com Michele Cushatt

          No problem!

      • http://www.sundijo.com Sundi Jo Graham

        Thanks Michele for letting me know. Appreciate it!

        • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com Michele Cushatt

          You’re welcome. Hope to see you there!

  • http://www.leahadams.org Leah Adams

    Two things that I have done to increase the effectiveness of my speaking. First is to actually speak. Practice really does go along way to increasing one’s speaking skill. Second, I went to CLASS (Christian Leaders and Speakers Seminars) a few years ago. What a terrific three days! Great use of my time and money. Really helped me go to the next level with my speaking.  

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I have heard great things about CLASS.

    • Jmhardy97

      I have not heard of that, thank you for sharing Leah.


  • http://chriscornwell.org Chris Cornwell

    The thing that has helped me a lot lately is teaching others to speak and teach. Raising up a new leader and coaching them to speak forces me to solidify how I prepare, write, and approach in order to teach them. Then critiquing them usually opens a topic of discussion that exposes negatives and positives in my own speaking.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      That is so true. Nothing hones your own skills like having to teach them to others!

    • http://LookingForPurpose.com Dylan Dodson

      Whenever we teach we become much better students. Very true!

  • http://joeandancy.com Joe Abraham

    I love speaking though sometimes I was intimidated by it. One major way I try to improve speaking is by practicing it. For example, before presenting a particular topic for a large audience, I try to practice it before a small group. They benefit from my speaking and I benefit by gaining more clarity and confidence for the upcoming presentation!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I agree. Practice is so important.

  • http://www.dwaynes--world.blogspot.com Dwayne Morris

    I’ve continued to read and file. I’ve reached a point where I need to add another reference level to my system. Like many comments before mine, I’ve found myself speaking more which has given me confidence and help me to be more conscientious of my audience while I speak. I find myself watching my pace and reading individuals in the audience. I’m also learning the value of networking with others who speak to groups. I’ve met with a few in the past months and seem to always walk away with something that helps me improve as a communicator.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      This would be worth the investment. It’s the single best thing I have ever done for my speaking.

      • Lrudd4 – Lucian Rudd

        Thanks for these notes .. sorry I can’t go … retired from full-time pastorate  … nearly 60 years behind me.  Have made myself available to speak .. still preach .. promote my new book ..  and Iguess I gfet around pretty well for 82  … I want to watch for your speaking page.

  • http://byrdmouse.com Jonathan

    It feels so different than the others but all I have done to improve my speaking is self improvement. I practice some, but I do an after action review and critique myself. I’m usually much harder on me than others would be. I also no longer get to make many speeches, but that’s beside the point. I feel out of the mainstream in this regard.

  • http://jasonfountain.blogspot.com Jason Fountain

    I have been studying a book by Nancy Duarte called “Resonate.” This is a powerful book for communicators. Nancy has studied a ridiculous number of “great” speeches and created a “formula” for a great speech. She, then, has you watch some great speeches and determine if the speech fits the formula. This is an awesome book.

    For me, I guess it comes down to finding more opportunities to speak. I’ve never been involved with Toastmasters, but feel that would be a great launching ground for becoming more comfortable speaking.

    In my former life, I was an academic advisor for the football teams at FSU and LSU. I recently wrote about “Communicating like Bobby Bowden” (http://bit.ly/ozBifR). He is a powerful communicator and I share 3 key lessons that I learned from Coach about communication.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Both of Nancy’s books are fabulous! I’m a big fan.

    • Jmhardy97


      thank you for sharing. I will take a look at this.


    • Joe Lalonde

      Thanks for the book recommendation Jason. I’ll add it to my reading list.

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      Thanks for the books Jason!

  • http://www.bretmavrich.com Bret Mavrich

    I find that writing daily is a discipline that boosts my public speaking. Many times I find clarity on a difficult idea, an important nuance or distinction on a topic, or a powerful turn of a phrase that really connects people to my message. Daily blogging keeps my mind continually asking, “what’s the best way to say that.” 

  • http://www.bloggingtheologically.com Aaron Armstrong

    One of the things that I found really helpful was being a part of Toastmasters for two years. Very helpful to get that regular practice and feedback from others.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Yes, Toastmasters seems to be excellent. (I have never attended.) Whenever I write on speaking, several enthusiastic participants jump in. That’s always the best recommendation to me.

    • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

      Toastmasters is a great organization and a wonderful place to practice your speeches and presentations before you go live. I’ve been a Toastmaster for over 15 years and I’ve heard a lot of great speakers. I really think Michael would make a great conference speaker for the Toastmasters International Convention, since so much of the training is leadership based. Maybe a suggestion for 2012…

      • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

        I really would have been disappointed if you hadn’t brought up Toastmasters, John. ;-) I will have my booking agent contact them. It would be an honor—and probably intimidating!

        • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

          Since half of the Toastmasters current program revolves around leadership,
          your content would be very applicable. The great news is, the last time I
          heard you speak, I didn’t detect any um’s or ah’s which can be a sticking
          point with a Toastmasters audience. I’m sure you would knock it out of the

          • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

            Ken Davis pointed out my um’s and ah’s problem about 18 months ago. I have really been working on it. Thanks.

      • Jmhardy97


        Due to your convincing. I am attending their next meeting.


      • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

        Toastmasters is a great place for developing and shaping one’s speaking skills! They are doing a fantastic job here in India too.

  • http://bit.ly/hWr7Cw Rob T

    I have tried to watch better communicators to improve my own style and timing.  It’s amazing what you can add to a message simply by timing alone.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I agree. I try to watch the best, too. You can learn a lot that way. It is even more helpful now that I have the SCORRE system stuck in my mind. I can deconstruct the speech more easily.

    • Joe Lalonde

      Rob, that’s a great way to learn. Another way is to read books written by great communicators.

  • Scott Bills

    I attended DCW several years ago in Estes Park, CO.  It completely changed how I approached anything I do that involves a presentation — whether it is a speaking opportunity or Christmas Musical!  For the first time in my life I felt two distinct motivators making my blood pump… I was in the company of some of the most remarkable people I had ever met (I was learning with them) AND I was not only challenged beyond anything I had previously learned, I was equipped to handle the challenge.  One of these days I’ll go back for a refresher… can’t wait!

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com Michele Cushatt

      We’d love to see you again, Scott! And thank you for the kind endorsement. We’re thrilled DCW had that kind of impact on you and your speaking.

    • http://allanwhite.net/ allanwhite

      …and the high altitude! :)

      • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com Michele Cushatt

        The altitude makes you a better speaker, didn’t you know? Or make it just makes you talk like a soprano. Can’t remember which … ;)

        • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

          Ha! I hope it’s the former.

  • http://lifeengaged.net Joseph

    I started speaking about a year ago and have done it a few times. I feel like I’ve come a long way since my first time. I actually have my first guest speaking gig in two weeks. I’ll be speaking to the youth at my dad’s church that he pastors. I’m very nervous but I know if I prepare correctly I will be ok… Our first child, a boy, is due in November so I’m not sure if I would be able to do the conference but I would love to attend in the future!!!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Good for you. Congratulations! (on both counts)

  • Tim Blankenship

    This sounds amazing! I agree that practice is the key and to use every opportunity to learn and improve, but sometimes we may be practicing with incorrect form (not just in sports). Looks like an excellent opportunity to make sure we are practicing at full capacity with the correct form!

  • Curtis

    Looking forward (HYATTLUNCH) to October Michael (HYATTLUNCH). Just trying to (HYATTLUNCH) figure out how to (HYATTLUNCH) register for the lunch since I’ll (HYATTLUNCH) be there anyway.

    All the kidding aside…one comment on the importance of practice.
    While it IS important to practice speaking it is also important to make sure you’re not practicing bad habits. The newer version of the old adage being that practice doesn’t make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect. To that end it is important to have someone, hopefully someone who knows what they’re talking about, provide feedback so that the practice has some specific targets in mind. That is a significant piece of what makes DCW so powerful, in my opinion.

    As much as we all hate being critiqued, as Ken always says, we’re all being critiqued every time we speak.  At the workshop we just do it to your face instead of behind your back.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      This is an important reminder, Curtis. (For those of you reading this comment, Curtis was MY coach at the last DCW. He is unbelievably good, both as a coach and a speaker.)

    • http://joeandancy.com Joe Abraham

      “…practice doesn’t make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect” – wonderfully true! Thanks for THAT.

    • http://www.warriorshepherd.com/blog Dave Hearn

      Good point, Curtis.  Feedback is key so that you have something to work on.

      There’s no such thing as a perfect speaker… I can always find something to improve on.

      • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

        Feedback is great tool for improving ourselves.

    • http://LookingForPurpose.com Dylan Dodson

      I loved your last line, very true!

  • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

    Hi Michael, one of the best things a speaker can do is come up with a good introduction that they can give to the person introducing them (Toastmaster, Master of ceremonies etc.). This sets the stage for a better presentation, since you can get on with your speech instead of your life history. I struggle with this at times. It’s always hard to find the right words to describe yourself. 

    I actually have so much problem with this that I’ve come up with a book giveaway today on my blog (with one of your authors) to have people share with me their creative introduction ideas. Whether it’s written or spoken, a good introduction can really affect first impressions. The post is here if your readers are interested. http://goals4u.us/qZknKg 

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, John. By the way, a great book on this is Better Beginnings: How to Capture Your Audience in 30 Seconds.

      • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

        I haven’t heard of that book before, Michael. I’ll have to check it out.
        Certainly the speaker introduction and the opening of a speech are critical.
        I think the latest statistic is that with the internet effect we now have 9
        second attention spans. If you can’t capture their attention right away,
        you’ve lost them.

  • http://www.medicalaccountsolutions.com Misty

    I am reading Everyone Communicates Few Connect by John Maxwell…

    • Anonymous

      I am as well, thanks to the generosity of Michael Hyatt.

      • Joe Lalonde

        Karl, I’m able to read it too thanks to Michael’s generosity. I was ecstatic to receive my copy in the mail.

      • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

        Ditto here, Karl.

    • Joe Lalonde

      I started that book a few days ago too. It’s a great book and brings out some great ideas.

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately, it’s been years since I had any formal training in public speaking.  In recent years, I’ve tried to learn from watching and reading some great speakers.  Andy Stanley (Communicating for a Change) is one example.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Andy is a great one. Craig Groeschel is another.

    • http://allanwhite.net/ allanwhite

      I’ve had the privilege of working for Luis Palau the last 5 years, who is an incredible & powerful speaker. He is a master of both the intellectual and emotional content that makes for compelling presentations. He doesn’t need slides, either!

      Mike Silva, one of our alliance partners, is also extremely creative and powerful. I don’t tire of listening & learning from these pros.

      • Anonymous

        Thanks for these suggestions. I’ll look up some of their messages.

  • http://daddybydefault.com Craig Grella

    I read this great book called Brain Rules by John Media, a neuroscientist from the University of Washington. One particular chapter about how the brain pays attention made me rethink how I do presentations, during live speaking and webinars. His research indicates that people’s brains tune out after 10 minutes of being bored. Even the best presenter needs to change things up every 10 minutes or so. Could be a sidebar, funny story, change in volume. Something needs to snap the brain back to attention.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      That’s a great reminder. Thanks.

  • Sid Emory

    For those who don’t have the ability to attend, is there any video teaching that DCW provides?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Not that I am aware of. Even if they did, you must the biggest advantage of DCW—the individualized coaching. I can’t over-emphasize how valuable this is.

  • Jack Lynady

    Andy Stanley’s book “Communicating for a Change” impacted my blogging, speaking, and coaching style all at once. Great book for anyone that wants to influence the way others approach life.

    • Joe Lalonde

      Jack, Andy has some great material. I’ll have to look into that book as I’d be interested to see what he has to say.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I thought it was a great book, too.

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      That’s a great resource. I too loved it Jack.


    Studying how effective speakers deliver their messages and striving to do same.  Also striving harder to see if I can do better.

  • http://LookingForPurpose.com Dylan Dodson

    Within the last year I have begun speaking at my church’s youth group. Although middle and high school aged students are not my passion, I have undoubtedly learned a lot through this experience.

  • http://twitter.com/RookieWriter David Barry DeLozier

    Sounds like a great conference (I will explore the opportunity further). In my corporate career, in addition to speaking to large groups, I hired professional speakers for annual meetings, which provided opportunities to get to know some great communicators on a personal level.  The best speakers study their craft, ask for feedback, constantly bring in fresh ideas and look for ways to improve.  The best-of-the-best made every presentation feel fresh and unrehearsed and engaged their audience in a dialog.  Right now I’m defining/refining my message. Ultimately, what I say is more important than how well I say it.  

  • http://joshuamhood.com Josh Hood

    I have heard rave reviews from everyone who has ever learned the SCORRE method, and even talked to Ken himself about it. 

    Mike: what do you think it is about this method that has made you such a better speaker?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I think it enabled me to focus on what I am trying to accomplish in a given speech, make one point, and then hammer it home. The SCORRE method helped me with my preparation in a BIG way.

  • http://thoughtsaboutnothing.com @kylereed

    I have worked on listening better.

    So I pay attention to the way people speak in conversation.I pay attention to how people speak when they are speaking. How they open, how they close, how they transition.

    I am working on my listening first before I start working on my speaking.

    • Joe Lalonde

      Kyle, listening better can help improve communication, and more importantly CONNECTION. Keep it up and you’ll hit it out of the park.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lifeblazing Erika Harris

    Hi Michael,

    I’m a new subscriber, first-time commentor, and am thoroughly inspired by your use of communication. You model care, skill and sincerity; a nd as a result, have attracted what looks like a wonderful community. Thank you for all of that!  

    Two things I have done to increase my speaking effectiveness is:

    1. Honor *and transcend* my highly introverted nature with networking that’s mindful, conscious and filled with people who have already achieved the same successes I hope to achieve; and

    2. Join a paid referral network just for speakers (http://empathicspeaker.ssnlive.org/) where I recently got my first major gig — The Black Women’s Expo at Chicago’s McCormick Place on 8/7!

    I am well beyond my comfort zone, and am growing rapidly through my desire to give, serve and love.  (A desire I suspect everyone here shares.)

    DCW looks amazing!  I hope to meet you in October.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Krika. Great comment. I hope to meet you in October, too. I will also check out this book.

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      Sounds informative. I should be trying “Transformational Speaking” by Gail Larsen. Thanks for sharing.

  • http://twitter.com/CoachTheresaIF Theresa Ip Froehlich

    I have to admit, I am very tempted by the DCW conference. (I heard Ken Davis at the Christian Writers Guild.) Most of all, I am very interested in your lunch talk on “How to create a killer speaking page for your blog or website” because this is the question I’ve been pondering on.

    To answer your question “What are you doing to become a better speaker,” I just recently took a six-hour workshop with a psychologist-convention speaker to refresh my public speaking skills and to pick up a few new ones. A truly divine appointment! He ended up inviting me to be one of his associate speakers.

    One habit I practice, not just in public speaking but also in daily conversations, is to craft my sentences so they will have an impact on the listener. I also try to be very succinct and to the point. This helps me stay disciplined when I get up to speak in front of a group.

  • http://twitter.com/WidowedWalk Brittany Hudson

    I have been speaking for quite a while but what I did that made the most improvement was to tape myself speaking. I wanted to review how I presented to the audience.  It helped with my diction, body language and revealed key points in my presentations where I seemed to be under confident. 

  • http://twitter.com/WidowedWalk Brittany Hudson

    I’ve been speaking for quite in the Sales arena.  One of the things that made a great improvement for me was to video my presentations.  It helped me see myself from the audience point of view.  I have had better diction, body language and flow.  I’ve also been able to see key areas in my presentation where I seemed under confident in my delivery without my knowing it from the stage. I highly recommend it.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Yes, I think video has helped me more than anything. This is a big component of DCW.

  • http://twitter.com/LindseyHartz Lindsey Hartz

    As a writer, I often want to run when presented with the opportunity to speak in public. I much more comfortable with one on one conversations, but am rapidly learning that writing comes hand in hand with speaking, especially when it comes to building relationships with others and finding fellow dreamers to engage with. 

    Thanks for the information on DCW, sounds fantastic!


  • Anonymous

    FYI…Jeff VanKooten’s post is listed as being written by me! Probably a code issue but I’m sure he’d like credit for his hard work :-)

    Thanks everyone for all the discussion.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Fixed! (At least on this page.)

  • Jmhardy97

    I think most of us can remember that first time we spoke in front of a group of people! How scary!! I need to do more research on this, I think all of us could you more development as a public speaker.


  • Geoffrey Doff

    Hi Michael, love your ‘ministry’!

    Would love to be a better public speaker, but we live in Canada and am retired. Would there be a video version of this? If this would not be effective, how about a simulcast, possibly with guidance at each site with previous attendees/trainees?



    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I don’t think there will be. Honestly, it is the experience of being their with the coaches that makes the difference. You have to give three mini-speeches, have them videoed and critiqued. That by itself is worth the price of admission—and the difference-maker. I just don’t think video would do this justice.

  • Anonymous

    What would it be worth for your speaking to be transformed? You can “improve” step-by-step  or you can place yourself in the “care” of a faculty of professional communicators. I first attended Ken Davis’ Dynamic Communicators Workshop (DCW) in 1992 as a guest of Ken to watch and analyze. I had already been speaking for a couple decades. DCW transformed my speaking and writing. The key tool: DCW’s “SCORRE” method or outlining, preparing, and organizing a message—ANY message. It does NOT tell you “what to say”, it assists you in determining your OBJECTIVE and how to communicate that clearly, powerfully. What would that be worth to any speaker? Priceless.

    As for the cost: Find a few friends willing to invest in you (and YOU be an investor as well.) I am partial to DCW as I am a faculty member, but I have had numerous people in my DCW coaching groups who tell me, ” I took (name of other course) … I read (name of book) and this (DCW) is so much more powerful.”

    Keep speaking (if you’re doing it right) and come to DCW. Every year that I go I learn more, even as a presenter and master coach. I never want to be satisfied with my speaking. “Good to great” … what’s after great?”

    See you at DCW … eventually.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks for dropping by and commenting McNair. I hope to see you in October!

  • canderson

    Yes, offer a video of the lunch convo, please! Personally, I believe it’s important to speak from your own authentic voice. Check out this video we made at The Soderquist Center as a part of a series… It’s a video we called, ‘Charisma’. Hope you enjoy it.


    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      “speak from your own authentic voice” – Thanks for the authentic advice.

  • http://www.dennismccaskill.com Dennis McCaskill

    I would love to attend something like this. Hopefully we will be moving to the states next year. When I started preaching I got told, I would never be any good until I have preached at least 50 times. At the time I didn’t like this advise but I must say it has worked out to be true for me. The more I did it, the better I got. 

  • Noelle

    This sounds like an amazing opportunity! My husband and I speak in public for work, church etc. And we are both interested in improving. We are interested in attending but are a little apprehensive as we’re unsure as to the expected experience of the participants as we don’t necessarily speak for a living. Would you still recommend this for us or perhaps a different conference?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Yes, I do. For example, my wife attended and participated. She doesn’t speak for a living but loved it. Usually every job involves requires some kind of speaking or presentation skills. This will help you with that.

  • Joe Lalonde

    To improve my speaking skills, I have been reading books regarding communication and relationships. I’ve noticed things that I can change and am actively working towards it.

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      Intentional efforts will surely lead to reaping rich rewards. Just keep persisiting.

  • Kile Baker


    For me, conferences like this are usually bittersweet when I find out about them. Initially I see them as a great way to help a young leader like myself (not yet 30) continue to grow and be more effective in the ministry I lead. I greatly enjoy learning from those wiser and more experienced than I, so I can take what I’ve learned back to my team and then make them more effective as well.

    The bitter part comes with the price. I have no doubt that the speakers and presenters are worth the money, but for someone like me who doesn’t have that kind of coin yet, it seems like I am priced right out of getting that type of education. I am currently trying to figure out how to go, but until then, could you give some insight as to how a young leader can attend these conferences? I appreciate what you and your team do. Keep up the great work, as us younger leaders look up to you.

    – Kile

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I wish I had a good answer, Kile. Obviously, on limited funds, you have to decide what’s a priority. There are so many conferences out there. I think I would get strategic about it. Which conferences (like this one) would be an investment that will pay of in a tangible way? Which ones would be educational but don’t really have a specific payoff? etc. Thanks.

  • http://goinswriter.com/ Jeff Goins

    This was a fun group discussion. Enjoyed hearing your story, Mike, and some of the other perspectives on communicating.

  • Adam

    I took public speaking at Biola University and one of many highlights of the course focused on the communication Aristotle made popular.  He said that in order for a speech to be effective and moving it must incorporate three elements: Ethos, Logos, and Pathos.  Ethos is the credibility of the speaker or whoever is referenced in the speech…”according to so and so..etc.”  Logos is the logical and intellectual aspect of the speech.  Pathos is the emotional or feeling aspect of the speech that moves someone.  I’m pretty new to public speaking but when writing or preparing an outline I try to make sure these elements are present.  Next time you listen to your favorite communicator or pastor, see if these elements are present.  I bet they are!

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      Thanks for the information on Ethos, Logos, and Pathos

  • http://kevinrossen.com kevinrossen

    I’ve been a fan of the SCORRE method for a long time now. Somehow I stumbled across Ken’s book “How to Speak to Youth and Keep Them Awake at the Same Time” published in 1996 by Youth Specialties. He does a really good job summarizing the method in the book (it’s available on Amazon) in a concise form. It dramatically helped me prepare messages when I was on my first summer ministry and I still use it today.

    The method I use now is to start with SCORRE and then arrange my presentations using Andy Stanley’s ME-WE-GOD-YOU-US method outlined in Communicating For a Change. SCORRE takes up the GOD section for me then I develop the rest.

    It’s not a perfect setup, but it’s worked well for me.

    • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

      Thanks for the book suggestion. I was looking for one such.

  • http://uma-maheswaran.blogspot.com/ Uma Maheswaran S

    I try to make the most of every opportunity to speak. I give speeches in my functional meetings, and discussion forums

  • http://www.ashleyscwalls.com Ashleyscwalls

    I have started interviewing people more frequently on my blog; Basically, creating more opportuntieis for formal and professional speaking. Thanks for sharing the above sources.

  • Benpgriffith

    Michael. I am fairly new to your blog. I heard about it from Donald Miller’s blog and I really enjoy it. Anyways, I am not the strongest communicator. I’m not referring to public speaking, but normal conversion whether it be with my coworkers or friends. Out of the recommended books you list which one do you think would be good to begin with?

    Thank you.


    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I am not sure I have the best recommendation for that. You might take a look at You Are the Message by Roger Ailes and Jon Kraushar.

  • http://synergysg.wordpress.com David E White

    I took the DCW – Excellent stuff.
    I have also been reading “Juice” by Brady Wilson…Communication is not just about speaking, it is also about listening, and therefore about inquiry…I have a long ways to go with this…but I believe it is enormously important.

  • Gatortodd

    I was fortunate to take the Dynamic Communicators Workshop from Ken at the National Youth Workers Convention in 1993. I still use the principles as the foundation for my speaking today. Incredibly helpful!

  • Steve

    As a pastor this will be a huge expense but worth it if really makes as big a differences as you suggest. How do you suggest I sell this to church as a worthwhile investment in preaching and teaching? What other experiences have people had at this conference?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Tell you people they will get more useful, memorable sermons.

  • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

    I finished Maxwell’s “Everyone Communicates Few Connect” and along with speak, speak, speak, I’d add “listen, listen, listen”–kind of like the two things you need to do to write well–read, read, read then write, write, write.

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  • http://www.forward-living.com W. Mark Thompson

    I would hope to be able to go to this, this year. But if not, I’m going to plan on it next year. If not this year, going to concentrate on brand building via blogging and writing. Maybe writing more will help develop some speaking skills as well. Seems like it would in the way of helping with clarity, categorizing, and creativity development. My biggest is clarity. If I can’t see it, it’s difficult to communicate it. 

  • Lana Vaughan

    I just registered for the DCW. It’s a huge step for me and I’m very excited.

  • Lana Vaughan

    Is it too late to get in on the luncheon on Thursday? 

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  • Don Crane

    Totally looking forward to being at #DCW11 next week. See you there, Don

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      See you then, Don.

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