Friday, September 10, 2010

Public Speaking: A Few Tips From Around The World

* In general, Asians do NOT tend to show excitement. This is rapidly
changing. In Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia, humor has recently been
introduced in business seminars and was well-received by standing room
only crowds. Humor is well accepted in Thailand. Thais really want to have
fun when they learn. Take lots of small gifts when you travel to Asia to
give out and be prepared to receive some too. Research the perfect gift, the
appropriate wrapping, the timing of the presentation, the value of the gift,
presentation etiquette, and any taboos that might be involved.

* Do not expect standing ovations in Australia. It doesn't seem to be part of
their culture.

* Many logistical parameters can be different in foreign countries and you
should be prepared. Many countries have different standard paper sizes and
use two hole punches instead of three. Any video you plan to use must be
converted to the appropriate standard for that country (see appendix). You
may need an electrical converter to operate equipment you bring with you.

* Outside U.S. borders don't refer to yourself as an American. We must
remember that we are not the only ones. There are North Americans,
Central Americans, and South Americans.

* In Japan you should never use self-effacing humor that is normally well
received in North American culture. Actually, the Japanese don't like
humor in seminars at all. They do appreciate a high degree of humility, so
feel free to apologize profusely for your lack of linguistic capability and
anything else you can think of to show you are not arrogant.

* Unlike the Japanese, Australians love humor. Plan to use it liberally. But,
as always, do your research.

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