Feb 122012

Simply Speaking: How to Communicate Your Ideas with Style, Substance, and ClarityWell written, excellent tips, and an interesting historical insight into the workings of Office of the President. Noonan takes some of the great speeches of the 20th century and provides commentary of what works and what does not.

I particularly enjoyed her eyewitness account to how the speech President Reagan gave after the Challenger disaster and Noonan account of the prayer breakfast where Mother Teresa spoke.

My favorite quote “No speech should last more than 20 minutes. Why? Because Ronald Reagan said so. Reagan used to say that no one wants to sit in an audience in respectful silence for longer than that. He knew 20 minutes was more than enough time to say the biggest, most important thing in the world. The Gettysburg Address went five minutes, the Sermon on the Mount probably the same.”

Each new Toastmasters member should get this book with their Competent Communicator manual to learn to become great at public speaking.