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Viken Mikaelian CEO

Viken Mikaelian CEO

Majorgifts.com LLC

The Perils of Public Speaking

When it comes to public speaking, no one can top Conrad Teitell, the man (icon) highlighted on the cover.

Being a presenter or speaker is always a challenge. You do not know how the audience is going to respond, and projecting confidence while keeping a good sense of humor is paramount.

And so is knowing how to tell a good story.

I have had my share, and some are hilarious. But nothing like this one.

“I’ve lectured in all 50 states,” he says, “and I’ve never, ever been late, nor missed a lecture. Why? Because I check the weather, and I act accordingly.”

Some time back, Conrad was due to speak at a conference in Ottumwa, Iowa. There was just one tiny little challenge: A good old-fashioned, Midwest blizzard was in the forecast.

Not one to let a few snow flurries stop him, “I left from La Guardia airport two days before I had intended,” he says. He arrived at O’Hare Airport in Chicago and spent “18 very comfortable [ahem] hours on the floor” before he could rent a 4×4 Jeep and make the nearly 5-hour jaunt to his destination.

After what must have been a pleasant ramble over the icy, snow-covered highways and byways of two states, he arrived at his destination literally 5 minutes before the conference was set to begin. Phew!

Only … there was just one person in the audience.

Not one to let something as minor as a lack of a packed house stop him, Conrad explained to the gentleman what he’d gone through to get there. “Would you mind staying for my talk?” he asked. The gentleman agreed.

“He was a champ!” Conrad says. “It was a three-hour talk, and he laughed at my so-called jokes; he asked intelligent questions; and when I finally stepped down from the podium, he gave me a standing ovation! I’ve never had a standing ovation in my life. I went over to him, and practically hugged the man. ‘If I can ever reciprocate,’ I said to him, ‘let me know.’”

“Yes, you can,” he replied, without missing a beat. “Would you mind staying for my talk? I’m the second speaker.”    

 I love this business and can’t wait to transition from Zoom to live.

By the Numbers

Consider the recruitment opportunities for your organization that these stats indicate:

  • About 63 million Americans (25% of the adult population) volunteer their time, talents, and energy to making a difference.
  • These people spend an average of 52 hours/year volunteering.
  • 72% of volunteers are involved with only one organization, while 18.3% are involved with two.

Random interesting stats presented monthly from various sources.