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A speech begins long before you say your first word

How you walked up the stage …
How you interacted with audience member during the break before your talk …
How you treated the staff during the checkup …
How you interacted with your host in the pre-event communications …
How you prepared material that the organisers needed …
How you spoke on the phone …
How you tailored the content to that specific audience …
How you practiced …

All these things add up …
… as do the things that you do after you said your last word.

All these things add up to organisers who are excited to have you on the stage, staff who are delighted to work with you, audiences who look forward to listen to you, journalists who are eager to write about you.

A speech is not just the time between your first and your last word that you say on stage. It’s you. The shortcut to make it a delightful experience for everyone is actually the detour of treating every step along the journey as equally important.

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