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Articles to Improve Your Skills

The Virtual Medium is the Message

  Dear friends and colleagues, Greetings! I bring you sincere well-wishes during …this. In the absence of better or un-borrowed words to name what we’re in, I’ll just leave it at that. I look forward to connecting on this insight: Has the way we tell our COVID stories become as much the focus as the […]

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Don’t Just Listen, Be An Active Listener

Business Communication Relies on Active Listening Stephen R. Covey said: “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Everyone has an opinion and something to say, and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The problem is when people spend too much time responding and not enough […]

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Win Over Your Audience With a Good First Impression

The Importance of First Impressions You’ve probably heard the saying “You never get a second chance to make a good first impression,” and it’s certainly true when it comes to public speaking. When you’re building your brand or contributing to your business, every interaction with a new person is the starting point to a world […]

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Creating the Perfect Elevator Pitch: Win Over Your Audience In Under a Minute

The Power of The Elevator Pitch Everyone’s heard of them, and maybe you know you need one, but you still haven’t taken the time to create the perfect elevator pitch.

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The Best Interview Tips for Candidates and Employers

Keep Your Interview Skills Sharp Research shows that as much as 92% of the population fears at least one aspect of the interview process. From “trick” questions to incomplete answers of communication interview questions, you’ve probably gone through an interview or two that could have ended better if everyone was on the same page.

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How to Use Virtual Meetings in Your Business

Darth Vader and the Virtual Meeting Back in 1980, George Lucas and his production company, Lucasfilm, released a little movie by the name of The Empire Strikes Back. Maybe you’ve heard of it? Looking back (and compared to today’s standards), the special effects were a little corny and the costumes were pretty outrageous. But something […]

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How To Be a Leader

How To Be A Leader Whether you’re the newbie in the office or a seasoned employee with tenure, learning how to be a leader will positively impact your business life in many ways. Maybe you want to be the boss one day, or maybe you just want to earn respect from your colleagues and clients […]

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Effective Communication Is the Most Important Soft Skill—And This Is Why

Why Effective Communication Is the Most Important Soft Skill Humans are built for connection. Whether that connection is brief (asking a sales associate for a price), constant (bonding with your coworkers), or deep (such as the relationship with your spouse), truly effective communicators can find a way to bridge the gap between themselves and any […]

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Are you communicating effectively with Co-workers?

Are you communicating effectively with Co-workers? One of your most important audiences is co-workers. You are communicating to every co-worker in your vicinity, sending both verbal and non-verbal signals. You may be communicating consciously or unconsciously, intentionally or unintentionally, actively or passively. Regardless of your intentions, others are watching and hearing from you. They are […]

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Master Public Speaking—Even if You’re An Introvert

Introvert and Extrovert Misconceptions When you think of an amazing public speaker, you probably picture a charismatic, charming, engaging individual who can drive their point across with ease and finesse. Although you’d identify this person as super extroverted, somewhere along the way, you misclassified the differences between an introvert and an extrovert.

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Does Your Body Language Lie?

Align Your Types of Communication Any time you engage with another person, there are two types of communication at play: your voice, which is sending a verbal message, and your body language, which is conveying the majority of information through your physical behavior.

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Why Speaking From the Heart Will Captivate Your Audience

Speak From The Heart, Right From the Beginning You know that the first few minutes of your talk are crucial. It’s in this small window of time that you’ll either captivate your audience and convince them to keep listening, or lose their attention and struggle throughout your presentation to regain it.

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Perfecting Your Conference Call Meetings

Staying in Touch Through Phone Meetings As your business grows and your client base expands, you’re probably finding it challenging to meet with everyone face-to-face. How do you maintain the same level of intimacy and customer service in a world that’s becoming increasingly virtual?

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How to Create a Slide Presentation that Wows Your Audience

PowerPoint Presentations Don’t Have To Be Awful Using a PowerPoint presentation or one created with Google Slides to convey your message is a great way to enhance your presentation with visuals. Do you dread sitting through a presentation that uses PowerPoint or Google Slides because they’ve been used in the same way so many times […]

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5 Tips To Improve Your Speaking on Camera

Performance Anxiety Got Your Tongue? Being able to speak with confidence in front of the camera and set aside your performance anxiety isn’t something that comes naturally to most people. Even the most experienced speakers can feel nervous in front of the camera.

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6 Ways You’re Messing Up Your Sales Pitch

A Great Sales Pitch Starts with Effective Communication A good sales pitch can be used almost anywhere: in business presentations, at conferences and networking events, on the telephone, or even over coffee with a friend. That’s because a strong sales pitch isn’t really about making a sale for you; it’s about you solving a problem […]

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How to Transform Your Fear of Public Speaking Into Energy

Public Speaking Anxiety Isn’t The Same for Everyone If you had to paint a picture of your fear of public speaking, what would it look like? A troll? An eerie shadow? A dark cloud hovering over you standing in an otherwise sunny location?

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Collecting Presentation Feedback to Improve Your Skills

Why Is Getting Presentation Feedback So Important? Collecting presentation feedback is probably low on your list of priorities, especially if you’re terrified of public speaking and not making a fool of yourself in front of a group of people is your biggest concern. But having some sort of response system in place so your audience […]

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Presentation Contingency Plans: When Plan ‘A’ Doesn’t Pan Out

Presentation Disasters Happen All The Time There’s an old saying that goes: “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Translation: I don’t care who you are or how much planning you’ve put into something, stuff goes wrong. That goes for presentations, too. Presentation disasters happen every day.

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Filler Words Are, Like, Ruining Your Presentations

Filler Words In Public Speaking I know you notice when others use them. I know you don’t mean to use them yourself. But those awful filler words have a way of creeping into your presentations the way a family of skunks hides under your front porch. You don’t notice them at first, because they’re so […]

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4 Ways You’re Ending Your Business Presentations Wrong

Close a Presentation Effectively You may think your presentations are incredibly well put together; you invest a lot of time into practicing your delivery and you are careful to use body language that sends a positive message to your audience. You know your stuff. You speak confidently. You hook your listeners with an opening that […]

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Body Language Doesn’t Lie

The Truth About Body Language When people tell us about their fear of public speaking, we find that what they’re most worried about is giving a bad public speaking performance. They worry about messing up their words, about forgetting what they want to say, or making some other mistake. If you’re one of these people, […]

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5 Bad Presentation Habits [Infographic]

Are You Guilty of These Bad Presentation Habits? What makes a bad presentation…well, bad? You’ve heard the saying “There are no small parts, only small actors?” It’s pretty much the same for public speaking: There are no bad presentations, only bad presenters. You can win over any audience talking about any subject when you know […]

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Bring Personality To Your Presentation Through Vocal Expression

Your Presentations Need More Vocal Expression A lot of presentations are boring, aren’t they? I know I’ve sat through my fair share of really, REALLY bad presentations. The ones where the speaker droned on far too long, his voice so monotone and flat that I had a hard time staying awake, much less hold interest […]

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Keep Your Energy Going (And Your Audience Interested)

Create Exciting Presentations That Stay Exciting One of the most challenging things about public speaking is keeping your audience interested. We’ve talked about engaging your audience before, and there are a lot of things you can do to make your presentation fun and enjoyable for the people listening. But how do you make it a […]

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How To Open A Presentation To Grab Your Audience Right From the Start

Create A Strong Opening Statement One of the best speakers I ever heard was a guy who started with such a touching and inspiring story of how he overcame personal tragedy.  As I listened, I couldn’t help but think: If this guy can come from the depths of despair to build a successful business and […]

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Why Memorizing Your Speech is Bad

Memorizing Speeches is a Big No-No When we emphasize the importance of practicing to attendees of our Presentation Skills Training workshops, we hear the same question come up over and over: “What’s the best way to memorize my speech?”  And our answer never changes: “You don’t.”

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How to Recover From Mistakes

Public Speaking Mistakes Happen to Everyone Tell me if this rings a bell: You’re going along, giving a great speech or presentation, when all of a sudden you draw a complete blank. Your train of thought has derailed. It’s about to crash and burn and take your presentation with it.

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Mind Mapping Techniques to Improve Your Presentations

Mind Mapping Works for Presentations When it comes to putting together a great presentation, sometimes the hardest part is figuring out how you’re going to share all of the information you want your audience to have, and in what order you’re going to deliver it.

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The Biggest Sales Presentation Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)

Make Sales Presentations Your Specialty Sales presentations take on many shapes and forms. They can be small and casual between a single salesperson and a customer, or they can be formal and elaborate, delivered by sales teams to corporate executives. Regardless of their size, they all share the same end goal: to make the sale.

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Communication Skills Every Manager Needs

Communication in the Workplace It goes without saying that communication in the workplace is the cornerstone to success. Without it, we can’t set goals for the good of the business or make plans to collectively achieve them. Without strong communication skills, no one would be able to share their ideas or concerns. There would be […]

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Should You Use Humor in Your Presentations?

Funny Presentations: They’re the Ones You Remember One of the most powerful communication tools you can use to deliver your message is humor. It’s what makes you real. And when it’s used appropriately, it can be one of the most effective ways to make your presentation memorable.

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Speak Confidently: The 5 Biggest Mistakes Presenters Make

Public Speaking With Confidence What is it about public speaking that robs people of their confidence? They stand up in front of a group and all of a sudden their shoulders drop, they fidget, and it’s blatantly obvious to everyone that they don’t want to be there.

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Q & A: Handling Audience Questions

Answering Audiences Questions Appropriately You’ve crafted an excellent presentation: you’ve practiced the talk, rehearsed your presentation, and even managed to come up with a few great jokes. But have you thought about the questions your audience may have for you when you’re finished?

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Talk With (Not At) Your Audience

If you’re lucky enough to land yourself a public speaking gig, the last thing you want to do is waste the opportunity. Yes, you read that right: I said you’re lucky to be offered an opportunity to give a presentation. Why? Because it means someone believes you have something important to say. Someone has chosen […]

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5 Visual Aids That are Not Powerpoint

Effective Use of Visual Aids Any presentation stands to benefit from well-placed, effective visual aids. By giving your audience something to look at, you can help them understand difficult concepts, reinforce key points, and keep them focused on your presentation.

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5 Secrets to Overcoming Stage Fright

We talk a lot about a fear of public speaking, and there’s good reason for that: A significant number of the people we work with have glossophobia. In fact, the majority of Americans—anywhere from 75 to 95 percent—admit to being afraid of speaking in public. These are real fear of public speaking facts!

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7 Things You Need to do Before a Presentation

A presentation is more than just an opportunity to explain a position or idea; it’s a means to demonstrate the hard work and research you’ve invested into it. And when it comes to preparing for a presentation—any presentation—you need to remember that the way you deliver your presentation is just as important (perhaps even more […]

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6 Things To Consider Before Choosing A Presentation Method

Your presentation method—that is, the way in which you deliver a presentation—is just as important as organizing your material ahead of your presentation. How you deliver your message is actually a vital component of the message itself. Your goal is to engage your audience and compel them to listen and act on what you’re saying. […]

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7 Ways You’re Using PowerPoint Wrong

Think back to the last presentation you heard that used PowerPoint. Was there anything memorable about it? How was PowerPoint used, and did it add value to the presentation? Too many times we see PowerPoint used as a crutch. Instead of delivering a strong presentation that’s augmented by PowerPoint, the presenter hobbles through his presentation, […]

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The Perfect Elevator Speech

Practice, Practice, Practice When was the last time you practiced on your elevator speech? What happened the last time you actually put it to use? If you’re staring blankly at the screen right now, wondering what an elevator speech is and why in the world you would ever possibly need one, here’s a crash course.

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Connecting With Eye Contact

When we talk about effective presentation skills, it’s the ‘speaking’ part that comes to mind first. And it only makes sense: it’s not much of a presentation if you don’t say anything! But did you know that aside from your voice, it’s your eyes that are your most powerful communication tool?

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Meet the Press

Dealing With the Media So you have to do a media interview and you sense the crowd may be hostile. Understanding that you may be asked some tough, pointed questions has you a bit on edge. Certainly you’d like to control the situation and get out of there with your hide still intact while at […]

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How to Use Gestures Effectively

How To Have Effective Gestures We talk a lot about verbal and non-verbal communication in our public speaking workshops, but what exactly is non-verbal communication? To put it simply, it’s the way you communicate through body language or gestures, and it’s a critical component of presentation skills training. To make a gesture is to move […]

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Effective PowerPoint Tips

Using PowerPoint Effectively Who hasn’t attended a meeting or presentation where the speaker overused their PowerPoint Presentation and created a slow death for their audience? You know; the one that had 125 slides and went through them in 20 minutes. Or the presenter that had to read each slide because the font was too small. […]

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Practice and Preparation Equals Success

How to Prepare For a Presentation So you’ve been called on by a senior manager to deliver a presentation to the company’s Board of Directors at their next meeting. You’re no stranger to public speaking; you frequently lead team meetings and make presentations to senior staff several times a year. But we’re talking about the […]

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Catapulting Your Charisma

The Power of Charisma Have you ever noticed how some speakers seem to have a special power to draw others in? Their presence is engaging, comforting, and their passion makes you want to listen to what they have to say. They are compelling, and you spontaneously gravitate toward them and want to follow their lead. […]

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Exceptional Presenters are Great Storytellers

Effective Presenters Always Tell a Story Effective presenters all have one thing in common. They are excellent storytellers!  Connecting with your audience on an emotional level can be accomplished by the art of storytelling, which makes it easier to pull them in and keep them engaged. The question I am asked most often by participants […]

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How To Engage Your Audience

Passion Engages the Audience Passion is the key to really being able to engage your audience! There is no shortage of rules that relate to public speaking. Stand up straight. Speak clearly and with enough volume. Make eye contact if you want to engage the room and on and on and on. All of these […]

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Present To Connect

Presentation Skills and Customer Service Companies large and small are all coming to the same conclusion, customer service is their lifeblood. As profit margins are squeezed and customer acquisition costs continue to rise, what can business owners do to stay competitive?  Simply differentiating your product or service is becoming less and less effective – in […]

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Why is Presenting so Stressful

Fear of Public Speaking What is it that causes so much fear and trepidation when it comes to speaking in front of other people? Why do we always become so nervous and jittery when giving presentations? Essentially, we are concerned about what people will think of us. This fear has become so embedded that it […]

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Using Storytelling in Business Presentations

Impact the Audience With Storytelling Successfully presenting your thoughts and ideas, and effectively impacting others with your message, can be a gateway to better relationships, more productivity and an enhanced bottom line.  Delivering a successful presentation requires that you truly connect with your the audience, and storytelling can quickly establish that connection. Most presentations promote […]

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Humor In Presentations

Use of Humor in Presentations Makes Them Memorable One thing the National Republican debates have reminded us of, is the importance of humor in presentations.  The candidates are obviously not aware to the extent that their comments will be twisted into late night fodder. They certainly do not give us these valuable nuggets for this […]

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Communication Skills and Business Success

Leadership and Communication Skills Great leaders are great communicators. Great communicators are great leaders. The ability to confidently and persuasively communicate are critical to great leadership, and those who rise to the top are the ones who can stand up and speak effectively. When was the last time you watched a CEO of a Fortune 500 […]

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Effective Presentations Expanding

Saturday, February 04, 2012 – 1:27 pm   Effective Presentations, Introducing New Video Production Company   February 4 — Already one of the nation’s premier providers of public speaking skills training and motivational keynote speakers, Effective Presentations of Lakewood, Colorado is preparing to expand its impressive line of products and services. The main focus of […]

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Ineffective Networking Meetings

7 Ways to be Ineffective at Networking Meetings 1) Talk about yourself:  After all, you are the most important person in the room.  Don’t engage the audience or ask anyone a question because they came to hear your story, not theirs. So it is all about you! 2) Never, ever make eye contact:  When you […]

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How to Develop Listening Skills

Listening Skills for Personal and Professional Success Realistically, we spend about half of our time listening to people. We take instructions from our boss, participate in group discussions, and listen to our colleagues, friends and relatives. Unfortunately, many do not recognize the importance of developing good listening skills. Poor listening skills can cost you an […]

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