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Public speaking tip: Be an impeccable time manager

Here’s one of my public speaking pet peeves:

Don’t tell us you’re going to speak for 5 minutes (and then go on to speak for 20).

This happened at a huge event recently (and it got worse when the speaker kept asking if his 5 minutes was up yet).

Yes, I know: The speaker was trying to be funny, so why not indulge him?

But the message to his audience was clear:

“This is about me, not you. I have the stage, and I’m filling my time.”

The audience’s collective eye roll seemed audible.

Avoid this mistake by indulging your audience, never yourself.

Shine the spotlight on them.

Never plant the idea that your talk is a punishment of time they must endure.