Z is for Zealousness

Zealous Speaking


At a party a woman was asked if she had ever had her ears pierced. “No” she replied, “but I’ve had them bored.”

The worst sin you can commit as a presenter is to be a bore!!!

The audience is giving you their time, their attention. You owe it to them to be as entertaining as possible. I like the term “EDUTAIN” coined by a trainer in a Fred Pryor seminar. I believe we are in the business of “edutaining.”

Offer good edutainment, be zealous, and you increase your blue-book value as a speaker, a trainer, – as an employee or employer. Now THAT is something to be zealous about!

There are many ways to add color, appeal, persuasiveness, engagement and zeal — “edutainment” to your presentations. Some of these have been discussed in other sections of this site:

Another crowd-pleaser is audience rewards, such as candy, success stickers or merchandise. Do a Google search for promotional items whereby you can personalize your goodies.


Sound Effects and Music

Another way to add stimulation to your presentations is the use of music and sound effects to enhance PowerPoint slides or to underscore your speech.

Wayne Choate, a Toastmasters accredited speaker, often ends his keynote with background music while he recites a meaninful poem. Very powerful. There are many royalty free music sites where you can purchase and download music tracks to add to your presentations. Adding a zealous element like music to your presentation can make it unforgettable; and giving an unforgettable presentation is PRICELESS!

I think the master of this technique, as well as effective use of visuals,  is Steve Jobs.  If you want a good read, and never again give a boring presentation, I highly recommend The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience


Learn by observing and studying from other zealous presenters

I recently attended Craig Duswalt’s Rockstar System for Success program and delighted in Craig’s high-energy, participatory, FUN style of teaching us how to achieve Rockstar status in our chosen field.

I learned that every speaker should have a book to establish credibility; Craig teaches how to write AND publish one in 30 days! In fact, I know a fellow Toastmaster who has done just that using Craig’s program! Maurice DiMino’s The Art of Public Speaking book has opened the door for him to offer coaching and seminars. I love his tag line “How To Kill from the Stage.”

Another extraordinarily zealous presenter is (and Intenet Marketing multi-millionaire) is Tom Antion. In fact, he was so successful as a speaker he couldn’t keep up with the demand from others to teach them his secrets. So he decided to put his speaking system on the internet, and the rest his history.

Of course, one of the most powerful and influential speakers is Anthony Robbins. Talk about zealousness!

Craig Duswalt, Maurice DiMino, Tom Antion, Steve Jobs and the influential speakers in American History!   There are many speakers and presenters to emulate!


I was hired to critique and improve the sales presentation of program staff working for a government. The audience was nearly asleep from the boring presentations. I had been watching one particular presenter prior to his segment, and I was thinking to myself, “I’m going to have to really tear this guy up on his evaluations.” He was poorly groomed, including big dandruff flakes on his poorly fitting sports jacket. His tie was hanging out over the top of his jacket button. His pants were way too short – I mean WAY too short. He appeared to be just a goober of a guy. When it was his turn to present his boring legislative issues topic, I got the shock of my life. He virtually flew up on the stage. He was running around like Groucho Marx. He was spouting off facts and figures. He made a perfect ad-lib when the electrically operated overhead screen started to go up by itself. The audience woke up and they were laughing and learning from this man. He actually got applause in a meeting that wasn’t even a setting where applause would be appropriate.

From this experience I learned the value of enthusiasm. This man made almost every technical error a presenter could make, but I gave him the highest evaluation of all the other presenters. If you are ultimately enthusiastic about your topic and let it show, many of your errors will go noticed. Your enthusiasm can make or break your overall performance.


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