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Discussion in 'Video' started by DaveT, May 17, 2014.
Here's Elon Musk's commencement speech he delivered yesterday at USC.
"Do something bold!"
"Work really hard"
"Work with or hire great people"
"Focus on what is important and don't spend energy on things that take you away from what you are doing"
"Know the fundamental truths of what you are doing"
And lastly "take risks now before you are in a situation that makes it more difficult to take risks."
I'm confused, are the graduates all going to start their own business? hahaha. Quite a narrow speech for a college graduation.
Elon's speech was to the USC Marshall School of Business. The commencement for the entire class was given by Marc Benioff of Salesforce.
Seems very appropriate for a school of business. Elon Musk is some kind of genius but he does need to take public speaking lessons. His delivery is a bit shaky but the substance is very real. I especial liked the part about surrounding one self with brilliant, hard working people. That almost alone defines a great leader. This car sells itself.
Many CEOs I have heard talk at conferences and talks are boastful and at the same time careful with their words, as if they were hiding something. This makes me less inclined to believe or trust what they say. Elon trips over his speeches, but it just seems somewhat honest to me. He's not holding back and doing much word-smithing to his speech with political correctness, which I know gets him to trouble at times. But it just seems more trustworthy. I don't know; maybe I'm just too naive.
Elon is actually much improved as a public speaker from a few years ago. If you're not a natural it takes years to master.
I do presentations in public fairly often, and I really sucked at first. Experience makes all the difference. Years ago I was offered the opportunity to teach an interest course, and part of the reason I accepted was to improve my public speaking. It really worked. I no longer get nervous in front of an audience and that is 95% of the battle. About 4% is avoiding saying "um", "yeah", etc. If you need to pause to think, just pause. Once you're relaxed it really comes across well, even if you're not the most charming person out there.
Every time I hear him speak he gets better. And it's really worth listening to what he has to say. As an engineer I just love the way he thinks.
Yes, if you listen to Elon's earlier speeches, he is much improved. In a lot of the recent talks, he is basically saying the same thing, so that also makes it much easier to not trip over your tongue. Regardless, I love listening to Elon because to doesn't shade the truth, he means what he says, the substance is usually illuminating, and he is really, really smart. The interesting thing for me, is the number of "analysts" and competitor CEOs that just don't listen to what he says. They ignore or discount his talks. Except for time estimates, he has been spot on time and time again, so you are ignoring what he says at your own peril.
It really does not matter in the long run. His message is clear and makes a lot of sense. He is so right about so many things like not spending money on items that do not improve the the product such as advertising. This Model S sells itself. in my world the word is out and this car is going to sell like hot cakes on a cold winter's day.
Absolutely true, Doug! I have noticed this about Elon as well. He is still smoother in smaller interview settings, but improving all the time overall.
BTW, if you want to REALLY challenge yourself, do an audience-invited TED talk! I did one at TEDGlobal 2009 (alas never published). I was a pretty confident speaker going in; man, that audience inspires nervousness like no other! Even very accomplished speakers, even speakers who have given TED talks previously, have commented on the effect. I think this is one reason that when Elon appeared at TED, it was for an on-stage interview with Chris Anderson, rather than a solo talk.
Yes, and Elon's TED interview was very crisp (they must have rehearsed it) as a result.
I don't think they rehearsed it. I think Elon is naturally better at answering questions, rather than trying to give a prepared speech. It seems to suit his personality, and he's aware of that.
To each his own opinion, but I've seen plenty of interviews of Elon where he goes off into east hyperspace when answering the question (not that I'm criticizing, I would be worse). Now having said that, his latest interview with the Chinese press was also very crisp and on point. As I said, he's getting better!
Sometimes genius speaks for itself.