Blogs from George Torok

If you are enjoying the speaking tips and insights on this blog you might also enjoy looking at my other blogs:

Business in Motion
Features business insights and interviews from CEOs, entrepreneurs and business innovators. An extension of my weekly radio show, Business in Motion.

George Torok Marketing
Building on the lessons of my bestselling book, Secrets of Power Marketing. This blog is clearly Power Marketing extended.

Power Marketing Secrets
Excerpts from the bestselling book, Secrets of Power Marketing. If you like what you read there you really must buy the book.

Excerpts from the final book from Peter Urs Bender, Gutfeeling. Call it what you want – Gutfeeling, instinct, intuition – but it is critical to entrepreneurs, business leaders and CEOs.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives


What is the most important quality that a speaker should have?

Hands down – the answer is passion.

A speaker must have passion to be successful – with the speech and with everything else that counts.

A passionate speaker might become a powerful leader. A person without passion will never be a leader; of themselves or others.

A passionate speaker will be listened to more eagerly than a logical speaker.

A passionate speaker will be forgiven a lot of tactical errors by his audience.

Passion beats logic.

Passion saves relationships.

Passion builds companies and nations.

What is your passion? Be sure to let it show through when you speak. You will be amazed at the results.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Presentations Success

You and Your Needs

To guarantee the success of your presentations do you need and want help to...

Design your presentation
What parts of your presentation should you rehearse more than any other part?How do you guarantee that your speech connects with your audience?How can you build in smooth transitions as you move from point to point?

Choose the wright words
What are the three most important words you should use in your speech?What deadly words and phrases should you avoid?What test can you perform to check the relevance of your words?

Grab attention & keep it
What three simple techniques can you use to grab attention?How do you keep their attention?What do you say when they seem to be fading?

The above are some of the questions and concerns that George Torok can answer for you. You might have other questions that we can address. We guarantee that your concerns will be addressed and you will notice immediate results. Your program will be delivered to meet your most pressing needs and wants.

Read more......

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Extraverts make bad Public Speakers

Have you heard a colleague say, “Oh don’t worry about Bob’s presentation. He loves to talk. He’ll do just fine.”?

And then Bob speaks – and bombs. Everyone knows that except Bob. Bob - who believed that he was a natural presenter because he loves to talk. Bob - who craves the audience’s attention but pays no attention to the audience. Bob - who did not rehearse because he thought he was a natural. Bob - who pooh-poohs the faux pas’ because he enjoyed his presentation, “What’s wrong with the rest of you?” Bob - who ignored the little details because extraverts tend to be big picture people not good with critical details.

Extroverts tend to be bad public speakers. They can be trained but they need a lot of help. The biggest obstacle is their attitude. They do not want to be trained. They must first overcome the delusion that they are good. This can be very difficult for extraverts to accept because they crave the attention – and believe they receive attention from the admiring masses. It seldom occurs to the extravert that they might simply be the loudest and perhaps an object of ridicule.

On the learning path extraverts start at the point that they don’t know what they don’t know.

Introverts make the best public speakers.

Introverts tend to be better observers and listeners. The best speakers need to listen to their audience to see how well they are getting through. Introverts tend to be better thinkers. Specifically they think before they speak so when they say something it is clearer and more profound. Introverts listen to what they say to test it against what they want to get across. Extroverts just want to hear themselves talking but don’t care what they say.

Because introverts are not naturally born speakers they will learn the system of public speaking. They will practice the skills and techniques. They will be willing to learn. And because introverts are good thinkers they will apply the speaking techniques because they learned the ‘why’ as well as the ‘how’. Introverts expect to make mistakes and learn from them. Introverts do not expect to be perfect while extroverts believe they are perfect.

Introverts just need to speak up to be heard and they need to adjust their comfort to speaking in public.

If you are an introvert – congratulations – you have the potential to be a great public speaker. If you are an extrovert – there is always hope after you get an attitude adjustment.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Introduce your Guest Speaker

How to introduce your guest speaker
Introduce your speaker
Introducing your guest speaker is an important job. Don’t wing it or you might mess up the purpose of the speaker. That wastes time and money.

The purpose of your introduction is twofold – to set the guest speaker for the audience and the audience for the speaker. This applies whether you are introducing the speaker to an auditorium of 2,000 conference attendees or to your sales team of 6.

Set up the guest speaker for the audience
You want the audience to be interested in the topic and to recognize why this guest speaker is the one best qualified to speak to them at this time. You want to create anticipation and credibility in the minds of the audience.

Set the audience for the speakerYou want the speaker to feel welcomed by the group. That is why the last words of introduction might be, “please welcome our speaker, George Torok”. Most speakers, even professional speakers, feel some speech anxiety as they begin their speech. There is nothing like applause and smiling faces to make your speaker feel welcomed.

Tips to prepare the introduction
Ask the speaker for a written introduction – not a bio.
Do not sabotage the credibility of the introduction by saying, “The speaker asked me to read this.”
Rehearse the introduction before you deliver it.
Ask the speaker to say their name for you – then repeat it back to check pronunciation.
Do not make jokes about the speaker – unless the speaker has instructed you to do so.

How this CEO introduced his expert speakerI heard how one CEO established instant credibility for his professional speaker who was about to speak to his account reps. The CEO first announced that he hired Peter, this expert speaker to work with them for the day to help improve sales. So he asked the group, “How much do you think I am paying this Peter?” The group got out their calculators and expressed several possibilities on how much an hour one person might charge. All of their guesstimates were miserably low. Then the CEO announced, “I’m paying Peter $10,000 to speak to you today so listen up!”

That worked. They eagerly listened.

Look here for more tips on how to introduce the guest speaker

Introduce your guest speaker well. Of course, you can use these same tips when you want someone to introduce you as the guest speaker.

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Communication Myth: 7 percent of communication is the words

Albert Mehrabian - the truth
Have you heard this one, “7% of communication is words, 38% is tone and 55% is visual”?

It is not true – yet so many self-declared communication experts repeat it.

Those stats have been twisted from their original meaning.

The stats are from a study conducted by Albert Mehrabian in the 1960’s. He published his findings in the book “Silent Messages”. He studied the case of one person communicating to another looking for what affected the believability of the message.

Mehrabian concluded that believability is connected to likeability. Below you can read the excerpt from Albert Mehrabian’s website on this matter:

"Inconsistent communications -- the relative importance of verbal and nonverbal messages. My findings on this topic have received considerable attention in the literature and in the popular media. "Silent Messages" contains a detailed discussion of my findings on inconsistent messages of feelings and attitudes (and the relative importance of words vs. nonverbal cues) on pages 75 to 80.

Total Liking = 7% Verbal Liking + 38% Vocal Liking + 55% Facial Liking"
-Albert Mehrabian

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Speech Anxiety: Overcoming the Fear of Public Speaking

By John Robert Colombo

This article addresses these questions about speech anxiety and the fear of public speaking:
  • Why do we fear public speaking?
  • Is speech anxiety normal?
  • What can we do to face our public speaking fear and speech anxiety?

Fear of Public Speaking

Speech anxiety is a general term for the sense of fear or panic that overtakes a person when he or she is called upon to speak or otherwise perform in public. There are other ways to refer to it - anxiousness, nervousness, "the jitters", stage fright, fear of public speaking, performance anxiety, etc. It usually strikes when someone has to deliver a presentation before a group of people. It makes little difference whether the audience is large or small, composed of familiar or unfamiliar faces. Psychologists consider speech anxiety to be a special case of what is commonly known as shyness. Read more...

George Torok

The Speech Coach for Executives

Effective Executive Speaking

Effective Executive Speaking is a three-day workshop that I have been instructing for the Canadian Management Centre for more than a decade.

In that time I have witnessed hundreds of executives and executive-hopefuls transform their business presentations from weak, confusing and boring, into confident, clear and captivating. They become Effective Executive Speakers.

My co-instructor, John Robert Colombo and I are constantly reminded of the incredible difference that three intensive days can make to the careers and futures of those who attend Effective Executive Speaking.

Why does this program work so well?
Many reasons; but these stand out in my mind:
The two instructors have different presentation styles yet support the same principles.
The classes are small – often as small as 10 or 12. That allows each participant intense personal attention.
The participants receive both instruction and demonstration from the instructors.
The participants practise the public speaking skills on their feet – several times throughout the three-day program.
The participants receive immediate feedback from the class plus coaching and guidance from the instructors.

We have limited this program to only four times a year. If you are interested in learning about the next class visit Effective Executive Speaking and register at the Canadian Management Centre.

The Canadian Management Centre is located in downtown Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
The Canadian Management Centre is affiliated with the American Management Association.

Bottom line:
If you are an executive or executive-hopeful, would like to vastly transform your presentation skills, and are willing to invest three days of your life, then I strongly recommend that you take the program Effective Executive Speaking offered by the Canadian Management Centre.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Toastmasters for Public Speaking

I am often asked about Toastmasters.

Toastmasters is an international non-profit organization that teaches public speaking skills. Toastmasters has been around since 1924.

The Toastmasters system works well. They operate as clubs that vary in size from 10 to 30 members. Most clubs meet once a week. The learning is a combination of practice, observation, manual guided and peer coaching.

It works fabulously well. Many well known public speakers benefited from Toastmasters – e.g. Lee Iacocca and Harvey McKay. Toastmasters helped me a lot in my early days of public speaking.

The regular weekly meetings help. But this might be the disadvantage for a busy executive or business owner – the TIME factor.

Do I recommend Toastmasters as a resource for learning and improving public speaking skills?


Learn more about Toastmasters at the main website. At the site you can search for clubs in your area.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

When You have Something Important to Say- emphasise!

When you are presenting a report to your management, a proposal to the committee or changes to your staff they are not hanging on your every word. When you get to the key points - you want them to listen, believe and remember. Use these techniques to give your words impact.

1. Announce, "This is important." Then give the important stuff. Teachers do this by saying, "This will be on the exam." You could state, "This is a million dollar tip."

2. Pause, just before, and after, you say the important stuff. Notice the effect of the pause at the awards night when they say, "May I have the envelope please?"

3. Lower your voice to increase the believability. Practise this, "And in conclusion," (lower your voice) "I am the best one for the job." Then try it in a higher pitched voice and notice the difference.

4. Make them laugh just before, then get serious and deliver the important message. When we laugh we open our minds and are more willing to accept new information.

5. Move before - then stand still while delivering the important stuff. This is especially effective for those who pace or move a lot when they speak.

6. Look your audience in the eye - don't read the important stuff. If you have to read it - then it looks like you don't really know it or believe it.

7. Smile. We believe those who smile at us. We also prefer to listen to speakers who smile at us. We listen with our eyes and our ears.

8. Tell a story of how this lesson was learned or applied. The earliest lessons were stories told by our cave-dwelling ancestors. They were remembered. If only the lecturers of today remembered the wisdom of our ancestors.

9. Repeat it three times during your presentation. If you want it remembered - repeat it and repeat it again.

10. Reinforce the message with images. We retain images better than words. Attach your message to word pictures, visuals and body language.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Richard Schmalensee on Running a Business

"The most frustrating part of running a technical organization isn't necessarily the technology; Often it's the people."
-Richard L. Schmalensee
Dean, MIT Sloan School of Management

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives