Humour depends on the audience

I usually caution people to use humour very carefully when they are speaking with groups because what may seem funny to you can be highly offensive to some other people.  It can be extremely dangerous territory.  I like to confine my humour to one-liners that seem amusing in the current circumstances.  I don’t usually plan them; they just emerge.  And if they don’t emerge, I don’t worry about it.  After all, humour is a nice-to-have, not a must-have.  The only must-have is value of the information in the presentation.
That said, I came across this guy who graphically illustrates the use of humour and the importance of knowing one’s audience.  He won a Toastmasters International competition for humour and he went to the trouble of documenting how he structured his presentation.  It’s interesting reading for any aspiring speaker.  Check it out at  He’ll refer you to another site to view the presentation on Youtube.  After you click the link, scroll down a bit and you’ll come to the video.

Need a guest speaker?

If your group needs a skilled guest speaker or workshop leader, I’d like to help you. I provide a range of communications key note presentations and workshops. Please visit the presentations and workshops pages of this website and contact me to discuss how I can help you.

Need a presentation trainer?

Would you like help dealing with public speaking training and other communications issues? If so, please contact me to discuss my public speaking training programs. I provide one-on-one presentation training and group public speaking training sessions that provide tools to develop your public speaking skills. Contact me today!

About Thomas Moss

Thomas Moss is a speaker, writer and coach who provides business communications services, primarily in the Greater Toronto Area, including Oshawa, Whitby, Ajax, Pickering, Markham, Richmond Hill, Newmarket, Vaughan, Brampton and Mississauga. Service is also available outside of the GTA.