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Speaking in public

Stick people sat in chairs listening to a presentation: presentation skills trainingIt’s long been said that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but in the harsh reality of business, judgements and opinions are quickly formed and can take a very long time to change.

We judge or perceive someone’s competence when we see them on their feet presenting – not on everything else they do, so presentation skills training in business is incredibly important. A great financial director can help a business run smoothly and efficiently, but if they deliver a lifeless, boring speech at the company conference, those watching will remember that element of the presentation rather than the actual financial state of the business.

Most people have been on a standard presentation skills course at some time in their life, but that often doesn’t help when you have a particular event coming up or when you need to work on something very specific to you. Our 121 coaching programmes can help you focus on your precise needs or help you prepare for an important speaking occasion in your life.

Our coaches come from business / corporate backgrounds and can help you apply public speaking learning and skills to real life.

Speaking through the Storm - handling challenging speaking scenarios

Do you ever have to deal with…

  • Challenging Q&A sessions or audiences?
  • Delivering bad news or tough messages?
  • Hostile or disengaged audiences?
  • Angry or unhappy customers?

Our new ‘Speaking through the Storm’ masterclass aims to equip senior people (especially women) to deal with the more challenging aspects of speaking – in meetings, speeches, presentations or panels.

Why Archimedes?

  • Our coaching is developed from a deep business and political background, our coaches are senior, experienced, practical, people.
  • We know how to present, speak and influence in a high level, corporate and political context and we can enable you to get your message heard, however challenging the environment.

How does it work?

  • ½ day masterclass
    (also available as an online or evening event)
  • Practical tools and techniques
  • Maximum of 8 participants
    (to enable application of exercises for everyone)
  • Available as an in-house, specific event and there are also a limited number of places on public programmes.

Join Seema Kennedy, former MP, Minister and Aide to the Prime Minister and Patricia Seabright, consultant and coach in public speaking, presentation and influence, for this short, sharp masterclass that will equip you to deal with all these challenges.

121 Public speaking skill building - take your speaking skills to the next level

Delivering speeches or presentations at key industry, political, corporate or client or even personal events can be both exhilarating and stressful. Although your public speaking ability is just a small part of your skill set it is disproportionately important.

It’s harsh, but true, that many people (stakeholders, customers and staff) will judge your whole competence by what they see of you when you’re presenting in a public forum, not on everything else you do the rest of the year!

Our public speaking coaching is designed to support people to hone their skills and build the capacity to meet any public speaking/ presentation challenge with confidence.

You already speak and clearly know the basics, but need a little focused, individual support in key areas, taking you from a competent speaker to a powerful, influential one!

What we do – content

  • Our expert coaches will develop a specific 1 2 1 coaching programme with you.
    We do this using a skills self-audit and a benchmark speech/ presentation, and together with you, we will agree a development agenda from that.
  • For each chosen topic area, we will teach a short segment on key content, background, knowledge tips, techniques etc, ask you to apply it and then review your output and give you detailed feedback.
  • To finish the programme, you would typically do a final speech/ presentation for review and to demonstrate how far you’ve progressed.

How we do it – methodology

  • We work with you, through a series of sessions, developing your skills.
  • These can be delivered remotely, face to face or a blend of both, whichever works best for you. The sessions fit around you.
  • We use coaching software that enables you to record remotely and receive online feedback.
  • The programme is usually delivered across four or eight 90 minute sessions.

Topics covered can include any of the following:





Managing Attention Spans

Audience Centricity and Analysis

Making an Impact

Visual Aids


Audience Engagement

Being Memorable

Voice Development

Body Language

Personal Impact and Appearance




Handling Q&A

Presenting as a team

Chairing / Moderating meetings

Handling nerves

121 Event specific coaching - exactly what it says!

For when it really matters…

Many people have, every now and then, a public speaking event that really matters, either in their business, political, or even social life. It could be a key note speech, a speech at a conference or kick-off event, a selection interview presentation or a wedding speech. But it’s an event that really matters and you need to get it right and be the best that you can be.

You probably already know the basics, been on a presentation skills course, but what you really need is some focused and individual support with this specific speech, to make it a resounding success!

We can help!

We can provide you with some time and cost-efficient coaching that will enable you to get professional input where you need it, with practice and feedback that will make all the difference to your speech.

Coaching can be face to face, remote or a blend, enabling you to utilise timings that work best for you. The programme is designed to be flexible and work around your busy lifestyle.  It’s always 121, to maximise the benefits to you.

We offer end to end support including:

  • Psychological preparation
  • Content and structure of the speech / presentation
  • Speech writing
  • Delivery and rehearsal of the speech / presentation

We can also include voice coaches and professional newsreaders where appropriate

Typically, this programme takes between 4- 5 hours (depending how long your speech is and how much prep time you want to give it) and can be done over 3-6 weeks.


Contact us now to book your coach to help you to deliver the best public speaking performances when you most need it!

Virtual presentation skills - perfecting the extra skills needed

Many people say that webinars and conference calls are no substitute for meetings and live presentations. In some respects, we agree – the power of a face to face interaction is unquestionable. Part of the reason, however, that people feel remote meetings and presentations are much less valuable is at least in part because they are executed so badly!

Be honest; How many times have you sat through a deathly dull webinar with 56 overloaded slides and a monotone presenter droning on and on…. Of course it’s only fair if you react by turning off your video/ muting your line and getting on with your emails with the droning going on in the background.

Archimedes have developed a programme to help overcome this.

Remote meeting and presentation skills are similar to those for face to face events but require adaptation. For example, your voice. In a normal meeting or presentation, you have to ensure your voice is audible and engaging but you also have your body language to help get your message across. Most people will be familiar with the research that suggests body language is responsible for about 50% of the message we receive and the words themselves only about 7-10%.

So, for virtual presentations, you have to work twice as hard with your voice to ensure you are clear and engaging. You need to be able to skilfully deploy your vocal pace, pitch and modulation. Typically, this is very different from day to day speaking and can feel unfamiliar and uncomfortable. Consequently, without proper training, people don’t do it and unfortunately, they end up sounding very dull and losing their audience.

As well as vocal skills, we typically look at:

  • What good content and structure looks like and how it differs from F2F events
  • How to handle the technology and avoid or mitigate against, the inevitable technical glitches
  • How to leverage the functionality of popular platforms (e.g. Zoom, Skype, Go to meeting etc)
  • How to keep your audience engaged (and stop them doing their emails!)
  • Physical delivery skills for video calls/ webinars
  • How to hand Q&As effectively (and what to do if no one asks questions!)
  • Avoiding the top 10 pitfalls

We deliver these programmes remotely (of course!) and as well as Zoom we use coaching software to enable each participant to remotely practice their webinar delivery and get detailed, asynchronous feedback.

Patricia is a Certified Virtual Presenter, and once you have perfected your skills with us, we can support you to to gain your certification.


Concierge Speaking Service - personalised coaching, speech writing and preparation service

What is it?

Our Speakers concierge is an individualised service providing you with ongoing support to help you deliver excellent presentations / speeches and save your time doing it.

Why do it?

  • To increase your professional reputation

Your public speaking ability is a small part of your skill set, yet it is disproportionately important. Stakeholders, customers, and staff will judge your whole competence by what they see of you when you’re presenting in a public forum, not on what you do the rest of the year!

  • To maximise your time

You know that to maintain and grow your reputation and career you must invest time and effort into your public persona and the speaking events that shape that. And yet, the demands of your job make it hard to find the time needed to prepare well.

  • To address the specific challenges for women

To be able to speak powerfully is even more challenging for women. They need to avoid various forms of unconscious bias that can work against them when speaking out. Many of the techniques and characteristics that work well for men, can actually work against women. Our programmes are led by experts who understand these challenges.

What we do – content and programme

We will give you end to end support:

  • Help to shape content and structure and slides creation.
  • You provide us with the raw material, a document, report and / or have a conversation to brief us.
  • We will provide a suggested structure; write an initial draft speech and provide slides which you can then edit and amend as required.
  • We will then support your preparation with rehearsal sessions, helping you refine your delivery.
  • We will help you prepare for Q&A, brainstorming possible questions and suitable responses and rehearsing the Q&A

We can include work with voice coaches, graphic designers, and professional newsreaders where appropriate

  • Content
  • Structure
  • Delivery
  • Confidence
  • Speech Writing
  • Q&A
  • Slide Creation
  • Rehearsal

Archimedes will provide you with time and cost-efficient coaching that will enable you to get professional input as and when you need it, alongside practice and feedback that will make all the difference to your speech. Critically you will be more prepared with your time spent in the most efficient way.

We work with our clients individually, looking at the personal, business and technical aspects of their presentations. If you would like to discuss any other presentation / public speaking requirements not outlined here (eg group coaching, speech writing etc),  please do contact us.

Presenting - why you need to give it more time and attention!

Speaking in public

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