There’s a lot of mayhem. A prodigious tally of explosions, an innumerable body count, and a huge, huge pile of wrecked machinery, including an astonishing number of expensive BMWs, Audis and of course Aston Martins.
All good fun. But what, if anything, did I learn about public speaking while watching Bond save the world, drink his martinis (shaken, not stirred), and finish off so many mad evil geniuses?
I learned three things that speakers can put to work immediately, upping their game, perhaps even lifting it to Bondian levels:
1. Skip the preamble.
What was fresh about the franchise was that, rather than beginning with a set of credits, Bond plunges us right into the action. We start with a murder, at the very least. Frequently a chase involving some of those expensive cars. Often, lots of big things are blown up in the process.
Bond starts with a bang, and you should too. Don’t begin with an introduction. Preferably, someone else does that for you, but if not, resist the temptation to say, “Let me tell you a little about myself (or my organization).” Nothing is more tedious for an audience. They care about what’s in it for them, not you.
Sorry. But that’s the way it is.