Neil Ross

In his career as advertising agency CEO and marketing expert, Neil Ross always loved presenting to an audience, but it was only after watching a television program about history's great orators that he became aware of the distinctive building blocks essential to create a stand-out public address.

"I'd been making presentations and speeches all my life, and loving it," says Ross, a former Managing Director of McCann-Erickson Sydney and Group General Manager Marketing for QANTAS. "What I didn't realise was that a lot of it was just 'yadda, yadda'. There are in fact ways to polish and refine a public address and simple, clever techniques that are guaranteed to dramatically engage an audience. "I was blown away to discover how great rhetoric is, quite simply, a specialised craft that anyone can learn, and with practice, master."

A father of three, who enjoys entertaining friends and colleagues with his joke telling and wide array of accents and caricatures, Ross began putting into practice what he was learning -- and grew inspired to share the knowledge he had acquired. He also brings to the party a deep knowledge -- gained through 30 years experience in marketing and advertising - of how to understand an audience and what may engage, persuade and motivate them.

However, when it comes to developing a great speech or talk, "it's about passion, content and performance" says Ross, whose real claim to fame is twice winning the Macquarie University Open Joke Telling Championship. He also sings in a band, and writes songs too.

Today his Art & Alchemy of Speaking Inspirationally course is part of the University of Sydney's Global Executive MBA program. Senior Executives are provided with the techniques, psychology and strategies to start their journey to become masters of the spoken word.

Fee Range: C