Phoenix Public Speaking coaching and workshops

Public Speaking Tip #43: Energize Your Presentation

If you’re a low-energy public speaker, here are a few tips to add a little “umph” to your speeches or business presentations. I believe there are three aspects of public speaking that are inextricably linked together.

If you manipulate any one of these three, it will affect the other two:

  • How energetic you feel
  • How wide you gesture
  • How loud you speak

When you are feeling energetic inside, you naturally gesture wider and talk louder. Likewise, when you gesture wider, you naturally talk louder and begin to feel more energetic. And when you talk louder, you naturally gesture wider and feel more energetic.

Try this test. First, stand up. You’ll always have more energy standing and should always choose this option to speak if it doesn’t look awkward to do so.

From your standing position start speaking about any random subject very softly and try gesturing very wide, with your arms outstretched like a great bird. It’s hard to do, isn’t it? It requires focus and concentration to speak softly and to gesture widely. It’s not natural. Your voice instinctively will start to get louder as your gestures get wider. Next, try speaking loudly but gesturing small and close to your chest. That’s equally hard to do, right? Again, it’s not the way we are wired and it feels awkward.

So, if you need a little energy punch in your speech or business presentation, try standing up, putting some air under your wings and talking a little louder than you typically do. You’ll feel your energy — and your ability to engage your audience — rise to the occasion.

How to Write Your Bio

By Sean Buvala
Guest Blogger

All public speakers eventually get asked to write “a bio for the program.”

With more than 100,000 searches per month for the phrase “how to write an about me,” there is no doubt that people are struggling with how to best describe themselves event bios, “about the author” segments or for any project. You are not alone if you are feeling challenged as to how to write a bio.

I think there are two strong issues with this process:

  1. First, unless we’re overcome with narcissism, we tend to not want to brag about ourselves, afraid to appear to be fixated on our own greatness.
  2. Conversely, we might think we are just too boring, wondering if we have anything at all of interest to our audience.

The solution to these two challenges is to focus on the audience who will experience your bio when you are planning to write your bio blurb. Write a new bio for each audience.

Here are a few of my suggestions:

  • Think about the focus of your audience rather than your own ego. What do they really need to know about you? In other words, go beyond sharing just what makes you feel good about yourself. What does your audience truly need? What facts, history, events, and talents can you offer that will help your audience connect with you? You want your readers to understand what you can do to help them achieve their goals and needs rather than just inspiring them to applaud for your wonderfulness.
  • Take the time to reflect on your past and present history. While you may be up against a deadline, an authentic biography is only created when you spend the time to do it right.
  • Consult with your friends, family, and coworkers, asking them to help you remember parts of your history you may have glossed over. Asking questions such as, “What words would you use to describe me?” can create opportunities for them to comment on your qualities and background. You might be surprised by the good memories that will surface from this type of question.
  • Consider the About Me you are creating as a way for you to share your personal story. Readers will be much more interested in your online bio if you draw them in with the elements of stories or anecdotes. No one wants to read your grocery-list of life experiences, but a good story-infused bio invites them to learn more. You can apply oral storytelling techniques to your written biography.

There’s no need to be lost or hesitant to write your own biography. The process can be fun and, while not trying to create some type of therapy, you might discover new things about yourself and your story.  Enjoy the process as well as the results as you focus on the audience and their needs.

ABOUT OUT GUEST BLOGGER
Sean Buvala has been engaged in the oral storytelling tradition since 1986 as a performer, speaker, and author. He started his work by accidentally using active storytelling to convert a classroom of slightly (but comically) homicidal 8th-grade teenagers from angry kids to storytelling practitioners themselves. He’s also the publisher at “The Small-Tooth-Dog Publishing Group” in Arizona and he’d be happy to talk to you about your next book. Learn more at smalltoothdog.com/authoreducation.

Quotable Quote: FDR on Public Speaking

Franklin D. Roosevelt’s once gave this advice on public speaking: “Be sincere. Be brief. Be seated.” FDR’s advice is spot on, especially for today’s audiences who seem to value authenticity and brevity above all else.

To master sincerity, focus on being personal, being yourself, but not being perfect. FDR mastered this technique in his famous “fireside chat” radio addresses to the nation.

But what’s the secret to being brief? How do you make your points as powerfully as possible in the shortest amount of time? Answer: Structure.

Having a thought-out and orderly structure to your speech keeps you focused and relevant and keeps you from rambling. Roosevelt mastered this technique as well.

In our coaching practice and workshops, we teach simple but powerful speech structures that you can easily adapt and use in business presentations, speeches and anywhere you find yourself speaking in public. Want to learn more? Let’s talk. Schedule a Speaking Sucess Strategy Session with us today. We promise to be sincere and to be brief!

Book Your Free Speaking Success Strategy Session

Lightboard Videos

I had a great time today making some lightboard videos for my public speaking coaching clients and students. These will be a great supplement to our in-person sessions.

You can find out more about our public speaking coaching packages and what we offer right here.

Blueprint for Public Speaking Success

Phoenix Public Speaking Principal Consultant Paul Barton will discuss exactly what it takes to be an effective public speaker and business presenter in the “Blueprint for Public Speaking Success” talk in Phoenix on Friday, March 2.

You’ll discover:

  • Simple but powerful ways to define the qualities needed to be a good speaker.
  • How to use the blueprint to assess your skills — what areas are you good at, what areas do you need to improve.
  • New ways of thinking about what it means to be an effective communicator in the Digital Age.

This one-hour informal talk is free to attend but you must register. Seating is limited to the first five people who sign-up. The talk will be held in a private conference room located within a Starbucks. It’s a cozy atmosphere that is conducive for insightful conversation. Participants are asked to bring pen and paper, and be prepared for an interactive discussion. Hope to see you there!

Claim Your Spot!

Business Presentation Skills: Turn Heads, Win Hearts and Get Results

Phoenix Public Speaking workshop

 

 

 

 

Your business presentation skills can make or break your career. They determine whether your ideas get heard, your projects get approved, and if clients come on board.

In our new two-hour workshop sponsored by the Phoenix Business Journal, Paul Barton, ABC, will show you how to make business presentations that turn heads, win hearts and get results.

Discover how to:

  • Make introductions that grab attention
  • Organize your speech for maximum impact
  • Use storytelling techniques in business
  • Make your conclusion sizzle not fizzle

The workshop will be held at the Phoenix Better Business Bureau, 1010 E. Missouri Ave., from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, May 8.

20% Discount

You can get a 20% discount by using offer code PAUL when registering. Our previous two workshops with the Phoenix Business Journal sold out quickly so be sure to register today.

Claim Your Spot!

The Difference Between and Podium and a Lectern

Many folks use the words “podium” and “lectern” interchangeably when talking about public speaking and business presentations. The two words actually refer to two very different things.

A podium is a small platform on a stage. You stand on a podium. A lectern is the piece of furniture that often supports a microphone and usually has space for a speaker to place his or her notes. You stand at a lectern.

This isn’t a grammar website, but hey, we thought anyone interested in public speaking would want to know the difference. And now you do.

RELATED POSTS

Don’t Be a Lectern Leaner

Ditch the Lectern

Presenting Without the Technology Panic

By Julie Solomon
CMO, CCS Presentation Systems

Guest Blogger

As the Chief Marketing Officer of one of the largest audio-visual integration companies in the country, I am always asked to make recommendations and offer guidance for business presenters and other speakers on what they should use for their presentations.

Let’s face it, we’ve all been there. You are scheduled to give a business presentation at a new location and you are sweating the technology. How early do you need to get there to make sure everything works? Will your laptop connect? Do you have the cables you need? What about internet access on their network?

My best advice is this: Choose the right software and you don’t need to panic anymore.

With SMART Technologies’ award-winning SMART Learning Suite software ($109 MSRP) your nightmares are over.

Simply by jumping on the internet from the room’s in-house computer you can: easily open, deliver and save presentations anywhere, from any device — including Chromebooks and iPads; connect your audience’s devices to your presentation to get them engaged, contribute ideas and answer questions; gather live feedback; and so much more.

It all starts back at your home or office when you use the SMART Notebook software to build your presentation. A subscription lets you install SLS on up to four computers. Choose from over 7,000 learning objects in Gallery Essentials to enhance your presentation, including images, backgrounds, dynamic files, video and audio content. You can even search for and embed YouTube videos directly by opening the YouTube add-on. You can also include assessment questions through SMART Response that will track participants’ answers and a myriad of other exciting, interactive features all rolled up in one software suite.

‘Now, you have the ability to make your presentations as dynamic and innovative as you are.’

If you are presenting in a location that has a touch display, you can really show off. Use hand gestures to zoom, pan, flick, and swipe. Scale objects or pages, flick an object or swipe between pages. You also can touch the interactive display to shake objects to quickly group and ungroup them. Use a variety of different tools, including pens and paintbrush, to create and emphasize, draw in any color and even convert handwriting to text or calligraphy.

The days of death by PowerPoint are over! Now, you have the ability to make your presentations as dynamic and innovative as you are. To quickly learn the software and how to revise and expand your existing presentations, reach out to our local team of professional trainers. You can attend a workshop at our headquarters in Scottsdale or make arrangements to work with them one-on-one.

ABOUT OUT GUEST BLOGGER

Julie Solomon, Chief Marketing Officer at CCS Presentation Systems in Scottsdale, manages all marketing and training activities for CCS Southwest and oversees national brand marketing for CCS locations across the US. In addition, she is responsible for fostering relationships with audio/visual vendors and new corporate and education customers.

 

ABOUT CCS PRESENTATIONS

One of the largest groups of audio/video integration companies in the country, CCS Presentation Systems Inc. provides integration, installation, training, and maintenance of audio-video equipment to businesses, schools, and government clients. Products include LCD/LED large format displays, interactive collaboration tools, digital projectors, digital signage, audio systems, room control and more. CCS is the preferred supplier to the Education, Corporate, Government, and Non-Profit markets, boasting more than 350 employees in 13 states, with annual revenue in excess of $115 million. Phone: 480-348-0100

Public Speaking Tip #42: Don’t Be a Lectern Leaner

A lectern is good place to hold notes, hide a small bottle of water, and support a laptop and a microphone. It is not a crutch, a leaning post or something to hide behind. Holding on to a lectern with a white-knuckle grip tells an audience you are nervous and such a posture will prevent you from gesturing naturally.

As we said in Public Speaking Tip #40, a lectern can come between you and your audience and thus lessen your ability to connect with them as well as you might. But, if you must speak from a lectern, here’s what you should do: Take a step back and stand straight with both feet firmly on the ground.

Stepping back from a lectern will allow you to gesture better, have more energy in your presentation and engage your audience more fully.

Blueprint for Public Speaking Success

Phoenix Public Speaking Principal Consultant Paul Barton will discuss exactly what it takes to be an effective public speaker and business presenter in the “Blueprint for Public Speaking Success” talk in Phoenix on Feb. 1.

You’ll discover:

  • Simple but powerful ways to define the qualities needed to be a good speaker.
  • How to use the blueprint to assess your skills — what areas are you good at, what areas do you need to improve.
  • New ways of thinking about what it means to be an effective communicator in the Digital Age.

This one-hour informal talk is free to attend but you must register. Seating is very limited. As of this writing, only two seats remain so sign-up today.

Claim Your Spot!