Q is for Quotes

 You never have to be alone in defending your ideas – quote others who agree!

– Linnaea

Quotes in Public Speaking


Add power and punch to your talks.  Use quotes!

Quotes are one of the most powerful tools you can use to enhance your presentation:

  1. Quotes are an extremely effective and powerful way to open or close a speech.
  2. They can be used for  smooth transitions between speech segments.
  3. You can call on quotes from other experts and authorities to defend your ideas or beliefs!

As an additional public speaking tip – it seems the longer the person has been dead, the more meaningful their words of wisdom:

Authority QuotesPeople will accept your idea more readily if you tell them Benjamin Franklin said it first. ~David H. Comins, quoted in The Washingtonian, Volume 14, 1978

With the Internet and search engines like Google, you never have to be without the perfect quote for your talk. Here are three of my favorites:

The Quote Garden
Brainy Quotes
Wiki Quotes

If you would prefer to have quotes right at your fingertips, check out the many Quote Books that are available.

Here are some ideas I culled from Tom Antion’s book titled, Wake ’em Up: How to Use Humor and Other Professional Techniques to Create Alarmingly Good Business Presentations. To these three suggestions I say a quote would work well.

  • Have a funny quote projected on the screen before a presentation begins can make participants take notice and build their anticipation of your presentation.
  • Leave the audience quiet and thoughtful by citing a touching phrase to close your presentation.
  • Have a pithy one-liner that makes the same point as a story, in case your time is cut.

I think the perfect way to close this topic is with this quote about quotes:

Quote by Abraham Lincoln“It is a pleasure to be able to quote lines to fit any occasion.” – Abraham Lincoln


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