Public speaking: Keeping it simple doesn't mean you're stupid

Keeping it simple requires confidence and humility
Keeping It Simple Doesn't Mean You're Stupid

Simplicity in speeches and presentations


One should choose the simplest explanation of a phenomenon, the one that requires the fewest leaps of logic. The more complex something is, the easier we should explain it.


Of each particular thing, ask: “What is it in itself, in its own construction?”

Marcus Aurelius



One should choose the simplest explanation of a phenomenon, the one that requires the fewest leaps of logic. Or in other words; “Keep it simple, stupid!”. Good old Albert Einstein meant; “If you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t understand it yourself.”


Genius is the ability to reduce the complicated to the simple.

C. W. Ceran


Instead of buying the book with the title How can I sound sophisticated and irritate my audience choose simplicity. The truth is that it takes trust and humility to keep it simple. We can all benefit if we can realize that we don’t have to talk like a super genius to be considered intelligent. There is a much greater genius in our ability to keep it simple. Remember that many of the world’s most difficult problems have been solved with the simplest solutions.

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Do you sometimes wish others would explain complex concepts in a more understandable way?

1 Comment

  1. Yes, every day!


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Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. Leonardo da Vinci

This article is a short excerpt from the more comprehensive course materials my clients receive in a group or individual training or coaching.

Published: June 21, 2008
Author: Karsten Noack
Revision: August 12, 2019
Translation: August 12, 2019
German version: