Welcome back to another week of WOW presentations. If you missed out on the previous installments, make sure to check out Part 1 and Part 2. You don’t want to miss out on some of the greatest speeches to ever come from Lyndon B. Johnson, Winston Churchill, John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan.
In next week’s concluding installment, I will provide a three-point plan on how you can start crafting your own WOW presentations. But first, let’s continue with another round of WOW presentations, including one of my all-time favorite keynote speakers.
If you had one last presentation to give before you died, what would it be?
Dr. Randy Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh), gave his last lecture on September 18, 2007. During this final lecture, he talked about his childhood dreams and how he achieved them, and then how he went on to enable others to achieve their childhood dreams. Randy’s presentation, or last lecture, which has been viewed over 16 million times on YouTube alone, is filled with revealing stories of self-discovery.
Randy’s speech demonstrates how the audience is always much more receptive when you are not lecturing, but simply relating. Instead of telling, you are sharing. Instead of telling someone what they should do, you are sharing what you did wrong, how you discovered how to do it right, then the benefits you realized. This is a great example of that.
Next we will end with quite frankly one of the greatest keynote speakers who ever lived, certainly of our time. Who am I talking about? Of course I am referring to the late great Steve Jobs.
The commencement speech he gave at Stanford University in 2005 is truly extraordinary and something I can listen to over and over again. In this speech Steve tells three stories. We will listen to his final story, and hearing it now, knowing he is gone, makes his words and premonitions even more poignant. Let’s listen to both Randy and Steve Jobs now…
Hopefully you learned the power of personal stories and allowing yourself to be vulnerable as a mechanism to relate, connect and ultimately teach a lesson or make a point, something Jobs did beautifully in the last commencement speech he ever gave.