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Columbo Technique

Most of us remember the quiet, cigar smoking detective on the hit TV series 'Columbo'. The show is still in reruns all over the world and every now and then a new episode comes out. One of Detective Columbo's trademarks is that as he would start to leave out the door he would stop and say, "Oh. Just one more thing."

The same technique is taught in my public speaking course and shows you what to do when your presenting (but without the cigar, it is hard to speak while chomping). Here's how the Columbo technique works: Save one of your really important points . . . maybe your most important point . . . then completely leave the topic you were on. . .only to use the "Oh. Just one more thing" technique and deliver your big point. The surprise of what you deliver is part of mastering what you learned in your public speaking course.

Until you've tried this out several times, don't try to use this 
technique at the end of your speech because people will start shuffling their materials in anticipation of the talk being over. This would cause too much distraction to have it's full effect, and the point would be diminished.
On the other hand, you could begin by using the technique just before a major transition in your talk. That way you will eliminate the shuffling of papers problem noted above. When you get comfortable with this, try this skill before a break. Play with your wording so that you control the audience. Don't say "Well before 
we take a break . . . " This will start them shuffling. Say something like, "That's all on that topic . . . Oh. and one more thing" . . . then give your main point. As you get really good at controlling the crowd you can try this as your closing. Coming back with the main point will be powerful and memorable when learned correctly in my public speaking course.

Oh. Just one more thing . . . .only use this technique ONCE per 
presentation. :) 

 


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