Every time I veer from my purpose as a teacher and coach with a passion for helping others be better communicators, I get lost.
It seems easy to look back and pinpoint exactly where I’ve gone off course in the past. Reflection is powerful, isn’t it? There were times when I was making a decision based on what I thought was the “right” move but that was not necessarily what was true to my purpose, or vision for my future. Sometimes I even made decisions based on what other people wanted me to do. We’ve all done that, I know…
I received a nice compliment yesterday. A client said, “You really invest yourself in other people. You’re always fully there; truly wanting to know about me and also hearing what I have to say. Thanks for that.”
What a kind thing to say. I’ll admit that I am a guy who really wants to help others unleash the power of their strengths. I see the good in people, almost to a fault. And I know the power of good communication — especially listening.
“Nothing can help the person who does not practice.” I read that in a Forbes article about public speaking tips. It made me stop and think about how easy it is to look at someone you admire and think they are a natural at something. The truth is that they worked very hard to be so awe-inspiring.
While it’s likely that highly talented people possess genetic factors that play an important role in their successes, training is necessary to become an expert. And with any kind of training, practice is key to honing one’s craft.
When you give a presentation, your slides should be simple and clear. They should support you as you convey your messages, whether you’re persuading, entertaining, inspiring, or educating. They should never cause your audience to have to read or decipher too much information. If that happens, then you’ve lost them. They are no longer listening to you.
I teach people how to create and deliver powerful and engaging presentations. Part of that training is focused on the right balance of text and graphics on slides. …
I teach and coach people about a variety of communication and leadership topics. No matter which topic we’re discussing, we almost always come back to discussing their audience. In fact, I always tell people that the first rule of good communication is to know your audience — really understand who they are. Whether you’re leading a team or building your own business, if you haven’t spent the time to consider the true needs of your stakeholders, you’re in trouble.
And by audience I mean real humans. Not just some demographics on a piece of paper. People want to do business…
We all know that the more you prepare and rehearse, the more confident you’ll feel when giving a presentation or speech. Even if you’ve prepared and rehearsed a lot in your head, you still need to do it out loud. Trust me, you don’t want the first time you’re hearing your own words to be the same time your audience is hearing them!
When you can, recruit a few people to give your presentation to. You can do this remotely over Zoom, or better yet in person once we are able to safely gather again. …
I’ve coached a lot of professionals on pitching to investors. Much of the time I spend with clients is on helping them tell a clear story — one that will resonate with their audience, and that will make a clear case for the investment opportunity at hand.
When my clients pitch, they are fully prepared with a compelling presentation that looks great, and that they deliver with brilliance.
But the fact is that you rarely get a “yes” from an investor the day that you pitch. You often hear, “Sounds great. Keep us updated…” or “Thanks for the presentation. …
When we feel we aren’t being heard, a common reaction is to talk louder. Or interrupt. And if you’re an introvert, you might lean the other way and keep your comments to yourself instead of trying to share them with those who need to hear them.
Your voice counts. Considering how you personally operate in certain situations as well as how the specific people you communicate with listen to and process information will help you be heard, and more importantly, understood.
Here are some tips:
Many people confuse these two terms, so here is my attempt to give some clarity.
Your personal brand is how you market yourself — internally within your organization, or externally to prospects and clients. When you have established a strong personal brand, you are able to confidently and clearly communicate your passions, value, and unique qualities to others.
A personal brand establishes or clarifies your abilities and capabilities clearly in the minds of others.
Executive presence is what makes you a leader that others want to follow. It’s a culmination of character, attitudes, and behaviors that clearly demonstrates your commitment…
The words we say don’t usually carry the full weight of what we mean. Think about a recent text or Slack message you’ve received that required more than one message back and forth to make clear. Would it have been easier to decipher if it was said to you face to face? Or even on a voice call? You’ll probably answer, “Yes.”
But that’s only scratching the surface on what can go wrong in our everyday communications. From distractions to rushing to choosing the wrong medium for the message, the opportunity for misunderstanding is everywhere.
When we work hard to…
On a mission to improve the business world through better communication.