written by Jessica Tatum
Although I was unable to attend the "Next :Lives Here" Summit for an extended period of time, the few innovations I watched presented by those representing the University of Cincinnati served as an impactful reminder of the basic principles of public speaking.
While some presenters seemed to have important, legitimate ideas, they had a hard time communicating them effectively - thus rendering their points useless. The first presentation I observed fell into this category. The older gentleman was flustered by his unexpected lack of a partner and difficulties while operating his slideshow. So even though his calls for an easier and more efficient "attendance machine" were warranted, his responses to the judges questions were relatively lacking in coherency. Basically, he lacked confidence.
Another pair of innovators was the small staff of the "TownCat" social planning website. The main speaker in this group was by far the most charismatic speaker I was able to see. In sharp contrast to the first I saw, this man younger and seemed completely comfortable in front of the audience, which allowed us to completely focus on the idea he was pitching. Unfortunately, in this case, the website's feasibility and niche fell under scrutiny by the adjudicators and all the charisma in the world couldn't seem to provide the serious answers needed to pacify those doubts.
Which bring me to the presenters from "Breathe OX Easy," who I believe were overall the most successful in pitching their entrepreneurial ideas in the few minutes allotted to them. This was due to the balance of a confident, professional speaking style and a well thought-out product that they defended well to the judges. Were there issues with their presentation? Of course - but instead of being flustered when their slides wouldn't appear, the duo spoke well from memory on the topic they obviously knew inside out. They also interacted with the judges, giving them a physical memory of their product.