While the TED Talk is a relatively new type of presentation, it is not drastically different than other forms of public speech or delivery. Giving a successful TED talk will rely on many of the same elements as the more traditional speech required by Unit One. Therefore, in preparing for my upcoming presentation, I will focus on correcting the errors that I made in my first speech.
I feel that one of the most important improvements that I can make is to capture and hold the audience’s attention more effectively. When preparing for my last speech, I spent time familiarizing myself with the information that I wanted to convey, but did not focus enough on how I planned to convey it. When practicing my TED Talk, I want to consciously alter my style, particularly my tone and inflection, until I find what will work best.
TED Talks are more of a performance than most other speeches. Without being rooted to a lectern, I will have to be more aware of my body language and gestures. Practicing with an audience or filming myself could help me eliminate any distracting or unnecessary mannerisms. Along the same lines, it will be more important that I not only reference my visual aids, but that I can seamlessly interact with them. Being familiar with the PowerPoint that I plan to use will give the talk an uninterrupted flow. Identifying and fixing glitches and technical problems ahead of time will also ensure that my performance runs smoothly.
Finally, while Unit One was a more structured speech, the TED format depends on general knowledge of the topic being presented and does not allow for the use of notes. Therefore, I will prepare by familiarizing myself with the key points and data that I want to use rather than focusing on strict memorization. This will, hopefully, allow for a more authentic and engaging presentation, feeling more like a discussion than a lecture for the audience.