Improve Your Public Speaking by Collaboration

Improve Your Public Speaking: Have You Considered Collaborating?
Frippicism: It is difficult to be creative in isolation.   

Patricia Fripp THE Executive Speech Coach
Patricia Fripp THE Executive Speech Coach

Collaboration is mandatory in much we do, and it can work for speakers when you’re trying to come up with new or improved speech ideas.  I often brainstormed with copywriting genius David Garfinkel and, (when he was alive), John Cantu, the San Francisco comedy legend. At one session, John was just out of the hospital after serious cancer surgery. We asked him to describe his experiences. In a few minutes, we were laughing so hard that I ran and got a tape recorder. “Start over,” I said.

As he talked, David kept adding dramatic effects, and I pointed out key lines of dialogue. When John finished, we had the foundation for a speech called, “Laughing All the Way to the Hospital.” It was full of human interest, funny, and poignant.

Our collaboration was so exciting that, besides the resulting speech, we transcribed the original conversation and turned the experience into a National Speakers Association seminar. We built a set on stage, using hotel furniture to replicate my living room. Then we re-enacted the whole conversation, freezing the action every now and then so that moderator Janelle Barlow could point out what we were doing and the lessons learned. It was an incredible learning experience.

You can listen to our efforts on “The Story Behind Awesome Storytelling” It was recorded a few years ago, however really demonstrates the “Once upon a time” technique. 

As David Garfinkel said, “We have to populate our stories with flesh and blood characters the audience can relate to.”
By the way, John Cantu lived five more exciting, vibrant years and contributed many more great ideas to our mutual brainstorming sessions.

John Cantu Putting Humor into Presentations

Very soon we will have the MP3’s from my last Patricia Fripp Speaking School.