Mark Zuckerberg Announces Skype Video Calling in 150 Umms or Less

Mark Zuckerberg from videochat announcement on livestream

from videochat announcement on livestream

Today we got to watch founder Mark Zuckerberg talk about a new feature in Facebook called Calling. Although it looks like a great feature, I (like a lot of others in the chat) were a little set back on the delivery of this announcement. Mark Zuckerberg ain’t no Steve Jobs. Even though he doesn’t need to be, how can he improve his delivery?

I personally went through this growing pain (and still do). It’s how you give a speech to a crowd without boring them half to death. It’s about talking to a group without them mocking your words.

Then I saw a video that gave me an epiphany – This was Admiral James Stockdale – the vice-presidential candidate for Ross Perot in 1992. It was against Al Gore and Dan Quayle – and his speech made Dan Quayle look good (full video of vice president debate on C-SPAN).

 “Who am I? Why am I here?” Stockdale begins.”I’m not a politician – everyone knows that. So don’t expect me to use the language of the Washington insider. 37 years in the Navy, only one of them up there in Washington. Now, I’m an academic. The centerpiece of my life was the . “

At this point, he said this clearly and succinctly. He got a good praise from the crowd. However, he continued:

“I know things about the Vietnam war – better than anybody in the world… I know SOME things about the vietnam war better than anybody in the world. I know how governments….  how… how american governments… can be…. {puts on glasses} can be courageous and how they can be coward…”

He continues on, stumbling on what he had to say. It wasn’t the best 2 minutes and really hurt in the Perot election. His voice stuttered and his posture was atrocious – using the podium as a leaning post. Fidgeting with his pen. The rest of the debate basically went downhill from there.

I learned a little about speaking watching this. I started watching other videos with eagle eyes, trying to get ideas on how to speak and keep a group captivated.

Zuckerberg’s Announcement – Video Calling

Facebook Video Calling

Video Calling

It was a pretty big announcement, although Google+ did overshadow with their “Hangout” feature. If you are chatting with a friend and want to talk to them, start the video. A great little feature, especially if you need to get more information and typing wasn’t going to cut it.

Mark Zuckerberg, though, was not putting his best foot forward. Although he didn’t stumble like Admirable Stockdale, he did show a lot of flaw with his delivery.

Zuckerberg in 150 Umms or less

At first I counted 116. But when I went back, within the first 15 minutes Zuckerberg was on stage, he said “Umm” or “Uhh” 148 times.  Another 15-20 umms came out when he was passing the mic to Peter, Phillip and Tony Bates (CEO of Skype). The only times he didn’t say Umm was when he could talk without distraction. If he mentioned a name, had to flip through pages or looked back at the screens, an “Umm” was going to come out.

Slow Down – You Speak too fast

When he didn’t say “Umm”, Zuckerberg was a freight train that was running a bit late. Maybe it was too much Gatorade and not enough regular .

Gatorade is for those running a marathon. Drinking more water than Gatorade has been noted to help you, especially if you have anxiety to things like speaking in front of crowds. I say it that way, because I don’t want to completely discount the effects of Gatorade. But once again, if I was speaking, I would choose to drink room temperature water up to an hour before getting on stage.

Cold Hard Fact: Most of us are constantly dehydrated.

1/3 of americans are not only dehydrated, but mistake thirst for hunger. The Mayo Clinic suggests Eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day.

Zuckerberg can Deliver a Good Story…

This was the only story he gave in his speech. It showed the human side and he delivered it well. Here is what he said:

“Over the next coming weeks and months we have a lot of fun stuff to roll out,” Zuckerberg stars with. “I was walking around the block – I have this neighbor (70 or 80 years old) he is always doing work in his yard  in the morning. I walked by this morning and he’s like ‘I heard you guys are launching something on the radio’. Yeah – it’s gonna be a good day. ‘I hope it’s . I really want to chat with my grandson…’ Alright. Tune in.”

Zuckerberg’s Announcement Overall – Video Calling in Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg and Skype CEO TOny Bates

Mark Zuckerberg and Skype CEO Tony Bates

The feature is pretty straightforward – If you are chatting and want to talk face-to-face, you now can do that in Facebook. It’s one of many new features rolling out in the upcoming months. Zuckerberg talked about how Moore’s Law can be applied to Social Networking (with charts to prove that).

Suggestions to help in Speaking

  1. If Mark Zuckerberg looks forward, there is no issues. He should have some type of screen facing him with the presentation. He shouldn’t have to look behind him.
  2. I was not sure if he had a fully written speech or bullet points. He might want to try a fully written speech on a teleprompter for events like this (where thousands are watching)
  3. Being hands free is always the best. Limited distractions so you can focus on your words.
  4. Coaching – The only way to get rid of the nasty habits is having a coach sit down with you and say “Get the ‘UMM’ out!”
  5. Drink room temperature water. Not a ton – you don’t want to have to pee halfway through.
  6. Practice with a metronome
This last point is something I like to suggest to many who are talking fast. You can even use a clock with a loud ticking sound. By doing that, you can pace your paragraphs. It allows for a more fluid motion and therefore a more captive audience.
If Mark does any of these options (hopefully the speaking coach will be in his budget), he might find delivering presentations like this will get a lot easier. He might also see people talking about his presentation.
Mark doesn’t have to give a “One more thing” kind of speech. Just a ‘Here it is’ discussion. If he wants to keep it feeling more down home, that is fine. Still, these presentations are just as important as Admirable Stockdale’s. Or better yet – remember 2008 when Zuckerberg brought down Sarah Lacy at SXSW?
(Visited 62 times, 1 visits today)