Every so often to hear a keynote speaker that knocks your socks off. For me, that person was Thurl Bailey, the 6″11″ former NBA basketball star who was the keynote speaker at this year’s SendOutCards national convention held in Salt Lake City, Utah.
He took the stage in such style, opening his talk with a full-on singing performance of one of his original songs. His voice was smooth and deep, his giant-sized body moving in perfect rhythm. Yes – it was a “wow” opening number. He had our complete and undivided attention. Throughout his presentation, Thurl moved with purpose and grace. He was comfortable in his own skin. He was impeccably dressed.
Thurl is what I consider to be a high engagement presenter, forgoing the traditional slew of boring PowerPoint® slides for more powerful techniques to create high engagement with his audience. Of course, he used a basketball as a prop during his talk; but cleverly had an audience member toss it to him from the floor. He also led us in a fun audience-participation hand clapping exercise simulating a basketball drill his coach used to conduct.