â€œWhat is the single most important quality in a tennis champion? I would have to say desire, staying in there and winning matches when you are not playing that well.â€
That’s a quote from John McEnroe, the tennis champion and former superbrat, who celebrates his 50th birthday today.
While of course the quote has nothing to do with public speaking, I think it’s good guidance anyway.
Desire is also the most important quality in a good speaker. Â
Many people ask me whether I think it’s impossible to be a great speaker if you’re not gifted in the way McEnroe was at tennis.Â Talent helps. But you don’t need the talent of a John McEnroe. Â But you do need desire and a willingness to practice.
It also helps if you have passion. Hopefully, you’ll do a little better job than “Johnny Mac” of controlling that passion.