This year has been a real adventure for CGI Clinic.
Not only did I travel overseas, I developed my curiosity for Internet Games into my passion and was invited to speak at TEDx Adelaide to share my experience to the world.
How did I achieve this as an advanced trainee, in less than a year? Here are some tips on how I did this, how this led to TEDx and how other passionate people can do the same.
Do you have an interesting story and an idea worth spreading?
Every TED Talk starts with an “idea worth spreading”. Do you have experience or knowledge other people do not have? Is there a message you want the whole world to know? Do you have an interesting story that would make people remember your message? If so, you might have a TED Talk on your hands.
Immerse yourself and you will find inspiration
By now, you might be familiar with my idea of #immerseyourself to achieve your dream. Whilst I was overseas, I downloaded TED Radio podcasts and listened to all the most popular TED talks during my daily commute. I also downloaded TED videos and watched them with English subtitles to get a more in depth understanding on how their message was constructed. By immersing myself, I one day realised, “Hey! I have a passion, a story and an important message to spread. Maybe I should do a TED talk one day too!”
Listen to “Road to TED” Podcast
This podcast really helped me to realise there is a blueprint to TED. You can find a link to their RTT website here. Once I realised this blueprint can be followed by anyone, it really gave me the belief in myself that I could do this too. There are many great pieces of advice from past speakers and the radio show hosts Mike Brooks and Dino Dogan really know how to dissect what made the TED speaker successful.
Join a Toastmaster’s club
Public speaking is an essential skill for anyone in any field. Toastmaster’s International has been around for over 100 years helping people develop their public speaking skills. I would highly recommend anyone join their local club. To be a guest is free and you should visit a few to find the right one for you. By learning in a safe environment, with like minded people you will build confidence to one day apply for TED. You can find more information here.
Hire professionals to help you spread your message
The key ingredients to spreading your message is:
1/ a professional website
2/ a professionally made video.
A website was important for me to develop and formulate my ideas. It was here that I realised how important my message was because I was getting a lot of traffic for certain posts. I then recorded one of my talks professionally and put this on youtube and my website. This was almost like my TED audition video and this is what eventually got me the gig. I also did a 1-day TV presenter course at FOX Studios in Sydney. Anything that involves speaking you want to participate.
If you need a web designer in the Sydney area, I would recommend this web design company: Symbiosys. Their website can be found here. They have made websites and apps for companies like Optus and Mentos.
If you need a videographer in the Adelaide area, I would recommend Shore Light. They specialise in TV adverts, corporate and web videos. Their contact can be found here.
Speak, speak and speak!
Practice makes perfect and public speaking is something that never came naturally to me. I remember in year 10, standing in front of my English class to talk about a book I had read. I didn’t prepare at all and you know what happened? I totally bombed out. It was embarrassing. From that day, I knew that I had to be prepared whenever I did a presentation. Prior to TEDx, I said yes to every opportunity to speak and practiced my craft. I even changed my style of presenting to be more “TED-like”. So when I finally got the invitation to speak (even though I only had 3 weeks notice), I was prepared.
To give a TED talk, you need to apply. Just go to their website and nominate yourself here. This is the hardest way to get on TED (I found this out on the RTT podcast). The other way you can spread your message is to look up local TEDx events which are independently organised. You will need to nominate yourself. I remember applying in Singapore, Sydney and then finally Adelaide. The other way to get on stage is to know a previous TED talker to refer you to the TED organisers (this I also learnt from RTT).