Book: Confessions of a Public Speaker: Scott Berkun

It's probably apparent that I've been travelling again a lot lately as the number of posts related to books has gone up.

One book that I picked up along the way and really enjoyed was Scott Berkun's Confessions of a Public Speaker. I could relate to so much of what Scott was talking about and there are quite a few solid nuggets of advice in the book.

It's very important when you are regularly giving technical presentations to spend time learning about the "presenting" part of the task, not just about the "technical" aspects. I found it quite insightful when Scott discussed how giving technical presentations has so much in common with stand-up comedy. It's not that you need to be a stand-up comedian but much can be learned by watching how good stand-up comedians ply their trade. They endlessly deliver the same material but need to make it sound fresh each and every time.

While the book is fairly solid from start to end, I did get quite a few laughs in one of the final chapters where he discusses things that other people have shared with him about their personal speaking disasters. It was also great to see our ex-RD buddy Scott Hanselman (now a star at Microsoft) quoted in the book.


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