Lessons from

the world of a

global keynote


The Big Virtual Speaking Debate: Sitting down or Standing up? (Professional Speaking. Episode 283.)

Uncategorized Jun 02, 2020

In this episode of Professional Speaking I have made a video about the two "camps" in virtual speaking: Should you be standing up or should you be sitting down?

In the video I show some of the advantages and disadvantages of each approach to help you master both.

And to be clear: I am in BOTH camps :) I think some speeches are better delivered sitting down and some are better delivered standing up. It depends on the speaker, the topic, the audience, the brief, the client and so on.

Make sure you master both so you can use the most appropriate technique. (And if you have a favourite technique that is fine too :) My favoruite is standing up.)

As an audience member which technique do you prefer, let me know in the comments?

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A few simple steps to transition from a "zoom presentation" to a proper Virtual Speech Experience. (Professional Speaking. Episode 283.)



For this week I created a short video (2+ minutes) where I show the difference between a “normal web cam experience” and a “professional virtual speaking experience”. The difference is amazing.

As professional speakers we should deliver professional virtual speeches - not just “webinars” or “zoom calls”.

That means that it just is not enough to use the normal equipment on your computer, you need to upgrade to a “virtual speech set up”.

Check out the short video to see the difference that a few, simple tweaks can create.

If you cannot view the video here, check it out on youtube:  

If you enjoyed this video, please do not forget to click “like” and subscribe to my channel to get more inspiration on creativity and public speaking.
If you know anyone who is looking for a conference speaker on creativity, innovation, change or disruption, please send them to ...

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The future of online events is (almost) here, and it will blow us away, and perhaps just change meetings forever. (Professional Speaking. Episode 282)


Could meetings go truly virtual and what would that mean for speakers? To find out I checked out some of the current technologies available.

As in-person conferences have been canceled around the globe recently we have instead been gathering on Zoom to “see” each other. But Zoom is "so early 2020”, and you can only get so excited about seeing a bunch of thumbnail video windows.

Let’s instead look at what is around the corner - or in some cases AT the corner - for how we could meet virtually.

(I will link to all the companies mentioned in the comments, because of LinkedIn's STUPID habit of limiting the spread of posts with links in them.)


Teooh has combined the virtual world with simplicity.

As a user you still have to download an app, but then the user experience is simple. You get to create your avatar to look like (or not look like) yourself and then you are let into a 3D rendered conference room where you can sit at a...

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How I almost died giving a virtual speech last week (Professional Speaking. Episode 281.)

 May 13, 2020 BY FREDRIK HAREN

Before we get to this weeks episode I have a big announcement: The first learning course: "Master The Keynote" is here!

Are you serious about becoming better as a keynote speaker?

I'm excited to announce that doors are now open for my brand new online program...

Master The Keynote

Inside this 5+ hour program, I dissect one of my keynotes so that you can see exactly what goes into creating a world-class keynote that inspires your audience and gets you re-booked again and again.

You'll get more than 150+ learning points on how, why and what I do to create a great keynote speech.

It is a unique course where you really get “inside the head” of a keynote speaker to learn the small details and nuances that you need to know.

If you're ready to reach your full potential as a speaker...

If you're ready to master your keynote...

Then check out the details here: ...

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The good news about professional speaking in these Corona crisis. (Professional Speaking. Episode 280.)

April 30, 2020 By Fredrik Haren

Four different events this week have made me feel that the people who book speakers are now getting serious about moving keynote speeches online.

When the Coronavirus hit the world a lifetime ago (well, ok, two months ago or so, but you know what I mean) speakers started to see their bookings being cancelled as conferences got shut down. The professional speaking world got ready for some lean times. The longer the crisis goes on the more obvious it becomes that the time for large gatherings of groups of people is still far off.

That is the bad news. (Especially for the MICE industry.)

The good news is that it seems that clients have drastically shifted their views on virtual keynotes

And before you start filling the comment field with comments like “This is nothing new: I have been doing webinars for X weeks/months/years” please read the whole post. ;) 

Some clients have booked virtual speakers for ages. And some clients were faster...

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Happy Birthday from Professional Speaking (Professional Speaking 279)


In April 2015, I launched Professional as a vehicle to share – for free – my knowledge around all the aspects of professional speaking.

Since then the site has grown to over 270 blog posts, and the community has expanded more than 22,000 people on Facebook alone.

Thank you for your support!

I love the process of sitting down every week to share with you what I have learnt about the amazing world of speaking.

To get to spread your message to the world is a gift more valuable and rewarding than almost anything else.

Today though, to celebrate the birthday of, I have a quick question for you. I would love to hear:

What do you like about Professional Speaking?

What would you love to learn next?

What would you like to get more of? What would you like less of?

Let me know by commenting on this post. 

It would be the best gift I could think of receiving.


Fredrik Haren

p.s. what can I...

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Speakers: Stalk yourselves. (About repeatedly rewatching ourselves speak) (Professional Speaking. Episode 278)

April 19, 2020 By Fredrik Haren

“Watch yourself speak.” That is one of the most common advice out there for becoming a better speaker if you ask experienced speakers.

And it is probably the advice that beginner speakers ignore the most. They know they should be watching themselves speak. But they don’t.

But you should.

And not only film yourself once and watch it once.

But film yourself often. And watch yourself often.

After 25 years of speaking and more than 2000 speeches delivered, I still do.

But here is the “expert tip”: Watch the SAME speech over and over again.

Because every time you do you will see different aspects. (Just like watching a movie over and over again. Every time you rewatch a movie you notice new things.)

And when you have watched the same speech 10, 15, 20 times then you start to notice small subtle things that you do that you would never notice would you always insist on only watching each speech once or twice.

I have just spent...

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Find out what kind of speaker you are at the core. (Professional Speaking Episode 277)

April 1, 2020 By Fredrik Haren

Magic Johnson once said: “When you face a crisis, you know who your true friends are.” I would like to re-write the quote to say: “When you face a crisis, you get to know who your true self is.”

Let me explain.

The global professional speaker market was one of the first industries to be hit by the Corona crisis. Travel bans and restrictions for large gatherings of people did not help. Conferences have been canceled left, right and center and the whole MICE industry (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events) is now one of the most hit industries that have come to more or less a complete stop. The professional speaking industry is at the center of this.

For 20+ years speaking at big conferences has been my, and many of my peers, main source of income (supplemented by a much smaller percentage of book sales). So when speaking bookings went down to zero, what did speakers do?

The answer is that they did different things!


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Speakers: Keep singing! (Professional Speaking. Episode 276.)


Birds sing in the forest. But put them in a cage and some of them still sing. Be that bird.

As speakers, we are used to be on the big stages, in front of 1000’s of people. So that is not happening at the moment. And to be frank: It will not happen for quite a while.

But do not let that stop you from spreading your message. If you are not sharing your message now, you were never a messenger – you were “just” a speaker.

When the market comes back, we will get booked again – especially the messengers.

Personally I have been creating, sharing and collecting more content in the last month than in any other month in my 20+ year speaking career. I suggest you do too if you are serious about professional speaking. 

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How to create a video that sells you as a speaker – without selling you as a speaker. (Professional Speaking. Episode 275.)



Last night I released a video that I have worked on for months.

I had 2 cameramen following me around the world to capture my work as a global keynote speaker.
(They went with me to 4 countries during a total of 10 days.)

All in all I used clips from my trips around from over 10 countries: From North Korea to The Maldives.

You can watch the video here:

I am sharing this video with you as an example of how a “Speaker showreel” does not have to look like a “speaker showreel”.
Yes, I am showing some clips of me on the stage for a few seconds at the end of the video, but the vibe of the video is not about me as a professional speaker – it is about me as “The Creativity Explorer”.

I think people are much more interested in a topic – than in a speaker. So instead I created a “trailer” for “The Creativity Explorer”.

I hope it will work as an...

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