Become a Better and Funnier Public Speaker

Quick, easy & fun steps to enliven your presentation skills with proven techniques from the world of stand-up comedy.
  • Lectures 69
  • Video 4 Hours
  • Skill level all level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion

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Course Description

Learn 7 Comedy Habits to be a better public speaker, consistently funnier and help rid the world of boring presentations!

This courses teachings, as referenced in Inc, Forbes, Fast Company, Lifehacker and featured by Prezi as one of the 5 best online training courses for presenters, outlines easy to apply steps from the world of standup comedy to improve your presentation and public speaking skills, using one of the most powerful tools available to us: Laughter.

What students are saying about it:

“A little gem of actionable hints and tips”

“Anyone who communicates with others - literally everyone - would benefit from this course to make his/her message more effective”.

“Not only the course is very useful but it is hilarious! I recommend it to any one pitching a project or a business idea. Great way to differentiate yourself.”

Top business speakers are using humor.

They are developing laugh lines using the same process as comedians.

You don't need to be a natural comedian to get laughs.

We de-construct the process from standup comedy into 7 Habits and show you how to translate them into public speaking skills for the world of business. These 7 Comedic Habits are aimed at helping you deliver a more memorable, entertaining and engaging presentation, every time.

Whether you are a seasoned presenter or someone with a real fear of public speaking (like me!) these easy to apply steps will help you stand out from the crowd. These techniques are being applied by numerous TED talks, start-ups, entrepreneurs, keynotes, interviewees and professional speakers to further engage their audiences and we take you through how to do the same.

There are step by step assignments following each section that will help you develop your comedic writing styles and delivery methods. This is further supplemented with engaging viewing material from a number of TED talks and business presenters on the covered areas. This includes an impromptu performance by Robin Williams and video of my own jokes at some of California's top comedy clubs highlighting the techniques covered in the course.

Most presentations are really boring. With application of these habits yours will not be!

These techniques will your make presentations more engaging and entertaining by:

  1. Teaching you stand-up techniques that work in public speaking contexts.
  2. Showing you how to craft your key message into a memorable and humorous story.
  3. Showing you to extract the funny and build it into joke structures through comedy writing techniques
  4. Preparing you to test these jokes and stories on live audiences
  5. Showing you techniques used by comedians to overcome stage fright and improve your delivery
  6. Instructing you on how to open and close strong, make a great and funny first impression while getting laughs every time
  7. Teaching you how to evaluate performances and identify which comedic elements should be added to your presentations
  8. Teaching you how to manage an audience and hold their interest

What are the requirements?

  • A good sense of humor

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Over 69 lectures and 3 hours of content!
  • Identify and understand stand-up techniques that work in public speaking contexts
  • Know how to replicate the techniques being used by top TED speakers to get laughs and increase engagement
  • Know how to craft and tell an engaging ( and funny!) story
  • Start and end presentations using stand-up techniques.
  • Learn effective memory techniques that will make sure you don't go blank on stage
  • Know how to craft a memorable story around your product/service
  • Learn how to hold an audience's interest
  • Know best techniques for overcoming fear of public speaking
  • Stand out from the crowd by making people laugh
  • Develop a file of tried and tested jokes/stories to insert into presentations
  • Learn how to deal with the audience in a presentation or talk.
  • Learn how to systematically write funny and effective jokes
  • Know to recover from a joke falling flat

What is the target audience?

  • Anyone who wants to improve their public speaking slills
  • Professionals who want to make their presentations more entertaining
  • Marketing and Advertising professionals looking to add humor to their messaging
  • Start-Up companies who want to stand out from the crowd
  • Entrepreneurs looking to get a competitive advantage
  • Sales professionals looking to hone their humor skills
  • Anyone who wants to be consistently funnier
  • Those who want to overcome a fear of public speaking
  • Those interested in stand up comedy
  • Those who want to fastrack the often lenghty learning process involved in Standup Comedy
  • Those who want to learn a new skill
  • Students looking to stand out from their peers through comedy
  • Anyone regularly making presentations

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee

Forever yours.
Lifetime access

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion


Introduction 1
Section 1: Welcome Overview
Adding Some Quick Humor with Seth and Amy
Ken Robinson and Moving the Humor Needle
Structure and Exercise Intorduction
Section 2: Comedy Habit #1: Start with Story
Comedy Habit #1: Start With Story
How to Craft a Great Story
How Long Can Your Story Be?
Exercise: Start Your Funny Story File
2 pages
Section 3: Comedy Habit #2: Add Humor - Finding the Funny

This example shows how just like comedians the final product of business speakers comes from a work in progress, delivered multiple times to find the best format. In the example show we analyze an early version business presentation to extract the key funny part from a story. This something the presenter himself did overtime with experience. We however, want to do it quicker.

Are Some Topics Too Serious for Humor? 2 Great Examples
Exercise: Identify the Funny
1 page
Topic Linkage
Exercise: Link Stories to Topics
4 pages
Section 4: Comedy Habit #3: Write Funny
Comedy Habit #3: Write Funny Intorduction
Comedy Writing Techniques: Introducing Joke Structure

AJ Jacobs is one of my favourite conference speakers. Watch him here using joke structure. If you go through his talks over the years you will see him building these jokes and really perfecting their delivery. The main joke here is great. The tagline not so much but you will find the most important part is the main punchline. The taglines are often continuously experimented with.

Brevity is Levity
Add Attitude, Present Tense and Local References
Delay Funny
Obama, The Rule of 3 and Delaying the Funny
The Rule of 3 Explained
Rule of 3 in TED talks with 3 Examples
Exercise: Link Topics to Presentation
2 pages

This joke would be equally at home on a stand up comedy stage. It one of the many many examples out there of top speakers in the business world using comedy techniques. Some are aware of it. Others learn it by trial and error. All are however well aware of which parts of their presentation get the best laughs.

Back to Ken Robinson
The Joke Funnel: Getting Funny Fast
Exercise: Watch this storied start and set up statement example
Section 5: Extra Easy Laughs with Images and Compare and Contrast
Use Funny Images and Jill's Example

A humorous look at social media and business, sales, marketing, and customer service. Brian Carter makes great use of funny images throughout and great set-ups throughout.

Exercise: Use Image and Video In Your Next Talk
1 page

In this lecture we look at an easy way to generate comedic set up, through comparing and contrasting items.This is where you link your topic to similar items relatable to the audience on a general level. We see a quick and effectetive example by Apple's Roger Rosner.


This is a quick example of one of my Compare and Contrast jokes based on an almost David and Goliath scenario. Ireland's performance in the London Olympics vs the USA's. We were just behind China (a long way behind) and in front of Azerbaijan for those curious.

Watch Comedy Techniques here with this great example
Exercise: Compare and Contrast
2 pages
Section 6: Comedy Habit # 4: Delivery
Comedy Habit # 4: Delivery (and the Memory Palace Introduction)
Memory Palace Exercise Intro
Exercise: Watch This TED Talk on the Memory Palace
1 page

This is an example of my memory palace from a recent comedy show.

Cut The Fluff
Start Strong with great TED Talk example
Exercise: Develop an Opening Line
1 page
Body Language and Getting Away From That Poduim
Never end on Q&A with Hilarious Mic Drop Example

This joke is not very funny when written out in words alone. Add act out however, hand gestures and stepping forward to emphasise the key laugh lines and you have a joke that gets a great laugh from the crowd.

Delivery Extras and Robin Williams Example
My Funny Story Example
Moth Story
Review: Techniques we have learned as used in my story
3 pages
Section 7: Comedy Habit #5: Rehearsed Spontaneity
Comedy Habit #5: Rehearsed Spontaneity
Same Premise Moth and TED example
Never Run The Clock
Chasing The Funny with a Great Example
Exercise: Hone Your Stories and Build a Set List
2 pages
Exercise: Watch this TED Talk- A great example of humor, story & delivery
Audience Time
Exercise: Spot Comedy Habits in Action
1 page
Some Tips on Stage Fright. (Feel free to skip if you feel good about this!)

Humanity's fine-tuned sense of fear served us well as a young species, giving us laser focus to avoid being eaten by competing beasts. But it's less wonderful when that same visceral, body-hijacking sense of fear kicks in in front of 20 folk-music fans at a Tuesday night open-mic. Palms sweat, hands shake, vision blurs, and the brain says RUN: it's stage fright. In this charming, tuneful little talk, Joe Kowan talks about how he conquered it.

Exercise: Practice Time
2 pages
Section 8: Comedy Habit #6: Control the Audience
Comedy Habit #6: Control the audience (and when not funny can be funny!)
Control the audience tips
Exercise: Start to Evaluate
2 pages
Section 9: Comedy Habit #7: Close the Book, But Not Fully
Habit #7: Close the Book
Note on Closing the Book
Pre Evaluation & Next Steps

In this lecture we look at effective ways to evaluate your performance using a scoring system to identify what works best, what needs work and what you should throw away. This system will highlight the most effective items to work into your presentations.

2 pages

Final Assignment

Section 10: Review
Laughing like a baby

This course has a lot of tips! Here are 80 of the best in a short guide that you can quickly scan before your next speaking gig.

Instructor Biography

David Nihill , Bestselling Author, Speaker,Entrepreneur, Learning Fanatic

David is the author of the best-selling book Do You Talk Funny? and the Founder of FunnyBizz, a community and conference series helping content creators tap into the power of storytelling, comedy and improv to create better content. He has performed standup comedy at California's leading clubs including Cobbs, the Comedy Store, the Improv and the Punchline even though he strongly denies being a comedian and is well aware most people don't understand his accent.

His learning, taken from one year's intensive experiments in comedy, performed on someone from the business community with a huge initial fear of public speaking (i.e. him!) have been featured in Inc., Lifehacker, The Huffington Post, Forbes, and Fast Company, amongst others.

He works with San Francisco State University, General Assembly and the Nasdaq entrepreneurial center as a course instructor and his clients include top companies like LinkedIn, best-selling authors, TV personalities, CEO's, TED speakers and a penguin he once failed to make funny. A graduate of the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School in Ireland, he wears a tie but only to bungee jump.

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Average Rating
  1. 5 Stars
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  5. 1 Stars
    • Geoffrey Neill

    Super Professional

    David's command of the topic has allowed him to curate a great course that has a lot of great content. I really appreciated his collection of TED talks that illustrated his habits. Also I specifically was helped by his ability to give prompts that inspire stories, and his underlining of how important story is to the process of comedic public speaking.

    • Jan Peeters

    very comprehensive course about key note speaking, besides the humor

    I really appreciate David's approach, and you can tell he walked the walk before talking the talk. Great presentation/ instruction style. Great use of TED videos deconstructed to illustrate what good looks like. This avoids the material being abstract and conceptual. I learned a lot from this course (and I am only at 75 % ! massive material!), also I found it very useful that he discussed how to incorporate a story in the presentation. I was looking for that info, and was very glad to find it discussed here! Tremendously useful!

    • Daniele Casal

    Very good

    • Paul

    Great course

    Very well put together i used this course for a presentation i had to give, i had a couple of questions and David answered straight away much appreciated

    • Kathrin Achenbach

    Excellent Course

    Great tool to help improve speaking skills and stage presence. Loved the format and even though I knew some of the material and lectures, I enjoyed watching them again. I highly recommend this course! Thanks for putting this together.

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