I noticed the following post on LinkedIn, and thought that it was important to share it. When I first came to UBC to teach Industry Analysis and Entrepreneurship in the Faculty of Management, I was struck by how utterly unprepared Faculty of Management students were to stand up and communicate their ideas. Most students used 3 x 5 cards and stared at the floor. One student, without realizing it, stood up and crossed his arms across his chest, projecting only his personal discomfort with the situation. Clearly this problem needed to be addressed. If there is one thing I have learned since graduating with a Speech-Communication degree, it is the importance of being able to stand up and communicate your ideas, what you believe, and most importantly, who you are. It is crucial to career success.

Fourth Year UBC Faculty of Management students will recall many of these points on “ice breaker” techniques to grab the attention of your audience. Use of any of these five suggestions may depend on your public speaking situation. Are you there to inform, inspire, entertain, or call the audience to action?…Is the situation solemn, serious, or relaxed? It can make a significant difference to the success of your speech.

Incoming fourth year UBC Faculty of Management students will recall these 5 public speaking tips from my MGMT 340 Management Communication course. It is a good review of what you learned so that you can exploit your public speaking skills in fourth year classes. The more time and effort you put into your preparation and practice, the more successful you will be in public speaking situations. Remember that verbal communication in interpersonal “one on one” and “one to many” situations has been described by Warren Buffett as the single most important management skill he learned.

The Wall Street Journal has highlighted this commencement speech, and I thought it so good, I had to share it here with my UBC Management students. It is at least as good as Steve Jobs 2005 Stanford commencement address, and it was also given in the same year, 2005.

My UBC Faculty of Management students will recall that I said that Bill Clinton’s speech to the Democratic National Convention was memorable. I also predicted that Clinton’s speech would be remembered and analyzed as one of the great communication events in recent years. Now that the dust has settled and the smoke cleared from the U.S. Presidential election, it is also much clearer what was important and what was not. It is even more clear now, with the passage of time, and the elimination of all the emotion. Below is the Wall Street Journal’s glowing assessment of Clinton’s speech. Coming from the WSJ, one must admit that their opinion carries even greater weight because a Rupert Murdoch owned publication is not expected to show much admiration for anything to the left of Karl Rove.