Vision Speech (high Performance Leadership)

Part 2 “Sharing Your Vision”

Every researcher at Cranfield University carries in their back pocket a ‘killer’ presentation?

High Performance Leadership 1 – Sharing Your Vision (5:00-6:00 min) Describe vision; describe what is to be accomplished with the project; generate interest and enthusiasm in the audience.


Napoléon said of his army that every soldier has the baton of a Field Marshall in his kit bag. What does every Cranfield Academic need in their kit-bag: 1) ideas worth sharing they already have, and 2) killer presentation skills.

What does it mean to be a great communicator and a great academic? I’ll give you an example.

Michael Faraday discovered electricity, and magnetism and invented the electric motor, and the dynamo. Can you imagine a world of smoky smelly candles and oil lamps? Not only did Michael produce experimental results that had eluded all others BUT he explained them as well. It wasn’t a natural talent of his! He worked hard at communication by studying and taking copious notes at every lecture he went to or gave.  It paid off. The regular lectures he gave at the Royal Institution made himself and the Institution a landmark in the scientific world. To this day the annual Christmas lecture to Children that he started is seen by countless numbers around the world.

In the words of Schopenhauer, “Talent hits a target that no one else can hit! Genius hits a target no one else can see” Michael is special because he takes YOU to see it to.

I hear you say that is all very fine and dandy, but what business is it of Cranfield Speaker? What I say is that of all providers of communication and leadership skills training we stand a part! Toastmasters International, to which Cranfield Speakers belongs, excels at delivery of these skills uniquely using the educational principles of self-paced experiential learning, supportive, positive, constructive peer feedback, and supportive mentoring.  When this powerful cocktail comes together we witness it foster personal growth of self-confidence, self-belief, and self-actualisation and the realisation of a person’s full potential and the bravery to achieve change and make a difference.

Life’s dance of change can be a twin edged sword as many of us enjoy change but HATE being changed. Toastmasters is a very conduce environment for welcome change!

A joke! Who knows the difference between an introvert mathematician and an extrovert mathematician.  A introvert looks at his shoes whilst he talks to you and an extrovert will look at yours. Susan Cain is an introvert and a leading proponent. Initially she published a book and it topped the New York best seller list, realising she had the opportunity to reach more people by talking about her work she joined Toastmasters. Eighteen months later she stepped onto a TED stage and the YouTube swiftly reached 5 million views. Stunning! In 2013 She received Toastmasters highest accolade the Golden Gavel. Today her speech has been viewed by over 12 million people.

Wonderful we are doing good stuff! Yes we are. Is that it? NO!! We can Outreach. We can use Cranfield Speakers as a platform through which to engage the community.

We have been approached by 8 doctoral students to help with their oral communication skills. They find it logistically too challenging to attend our meetings. Speechcraft is a 4-8 session Toastmasters outreach program. In condensed from it covers most of the Competent Communicator manual.

By outreaching we would be engaging with a stimulating dynamic group of ambitious young people. Within Toastmasters we would gain a lot of leadership recognition. Within the University we would increase our standing and visibility. Within the area we may see these students becoming full members. Within the future we may mentor the students to help pass on their skills and organise meetings. In a year from now we maybe sitting in a network of Toastmastering activity rather than a linear progression of club meetings

To summarise the need for communication and leadership skills has; NEVER been more evident and for greater numbers of people, the Toastmasters educational model has NEVER been more needed. and the call to outreach has NEVER been more pertinent.

We have two hands. One to help ourself and the one to help others!


Feedback and Reflections

Overall it hit the nail on the head. It took best Speaker Award. My first ever Advanced project to take an award. The examples were very well appreciated as was the pacing and pauses.  As it happens. I was nursing the early phases of a winter chest infection and slowed down to avoid becoming dry throated and breathless.

It was a late idea to try to use visual aids in the form of websites describing the Christmas lectures, Susan Cain’s YouTube, and Toastmaster’s community outreach program. I was picked up on not using them smoothly.

Other recommendations were a little less technical content to improve the timeliness of the talk and not to overwork the mental agility of the audience.


Started by Michael Faraday in 1825, and now broadcast on national television every year, the CHRISTMAS LECTURES are the UK’s flagship science series.Catch up with past CHRISTMAS LECTURES in full and for free on the Ri Channel.

Curated from Christmas Lectures | The Royal Institution: Science Lives Here In a culture where being social and outgoing are prized above all else, it can be difficult, even shameful, to be an introvert. But, as Susan Cain argues in this passionate talk, introverts bring extraordinary talents and abilities to the world, and should be encouraged and celebrated.

Curated from Susan Cain: The Power of Introverts – YouTube


The Speechcraft program allows experienced Toastmasters to present the fundamentals of public speaking to non-members. It can be offered as an integral part of your club meeting or as a seminar-style program presented outside the club. It can be conducted in four, six or eight sessions.

Curated from Toastmasters International -Outreach Programs



Print Friendly, PDF & Email