The personal website of Chris Coyier

Speaking Links and Thoughts

Idan Gazit on Designing Presentations.

Dr. Weinschenk’s video 5 Things Every Presenter Should Know About People.

I was once recommend Confessions of a Public Speaker and I read it and it’s very good.

My Biggest Tip

Look at your previous talks. Could you make an entire talk out of one of the slides? You should probably do that. Slides that cover everything under the sun feel like the person is avoiding actually saying anything (usually). If you go with something very specific, people will remember it instead of zoning out with information overload.

I once did an hour talk on only the ::before and ::after elements in CSS. Literally nothing else. I’ve gotten tons of feedback on that talk on how people totally get it now and they use these selectors now to great effect in their work.

By the end of the talk, I feel like people should completely understand what you are saying. Like in City Slickers when Billy Crystal is explaining how the VCR works very clearly and dude explodes like:

SHUT UP. JUST SHUT UP. The cows could tape something by now.

I want it so when I’m done talking, if there were any cows in the room, they understand.

Other Quick Hits

People in the room want you to do well. They aren’t against you, they are for you. They will be super forgiving as long as your acknowledge and respect them.

Confidence is key. Talk about something you know cold. You know it to the point where even if you get a weird question about it that you can’t answer, it’s actually interesting that you don’t know the answer and you can use that as your answer (while promising follow-up).

Tell em. Tell em what you told em. Tell em what you told em. Old adage that helps mostly in structuring your talk.