How to Avoid Confusing Your Audience with Mixed Messages

An upside down one-way sign

I came across this sign on my drive to work earlier this week. The arrow points to the right, but the words are upside down, which means the arrow should be pointing to the left. I think. And there’s the rub. Because what I saw—the arrow—didn’t match the words. Mixed message. I had to choose. Go right, or go left? I had to stop and think about it. And that’s what happens in presentations. If we tell our audience one … Continue reading

Bring Your Presentation to Life Using Stories

Story

What’s your favorite movie? Without knowing the answer, I’ll bet I know the basic storyline: Someone wanted something Something got in his/her/their way of getting what they wanted A struggle took place It looked like your someone wasn’t going to get what he/she/they wanted Your someone learned an important lesson from the struggle It helped him/her/them get what they originally wanted or something even more valuable That’s the storyline of pretty much all great stories from Homer’s Illiad right on … Continue reading

And the Winner Is…What to Do After a Major Presentation Mistake

People on stage at the Academy Awards

For obvious reasons, most people dread making a major presentation mistake. We don’t want to look stupid. We don’t want to fail. Ironically, it’s when things do go wrong in a presentation that you actually have a chance to shine the brightest—by showing your ability to handle the moment. Lessons from The Academy Awards This year’s Academy Awards ceremony is probably the winner of biggest blunder ever in a pivotal moment of a presentation. They gave the presenters, Warren Beatty … Continue reading

Two Changes to Your Presentation That Can Smooth Out Your Start

Gerry Sandusky on youtube

You have a small window of time to get your audience’s attention. Too often presenters miss that window by taking way too long to get going. The open to too many presentations turns into a meander while the presenter gets his or her momentum going. It doesn’t have to take so long to get going. This video will show you two simple changes you can make that will have a dramatic impact on your next presentation because a better start … Continue reading

Two Ways to Ensure Body Language Improves Your Presentations

If it didn’t send a message, we wouldn’t call it body language. What you do with your body impacts the message your audience takes away from your presentation. To get the most positive impact from your body language in a presentation, you need to know these two things before you say your first word in the presentation: What’s your message? What’s the perception you want the audience to have of you and your presentation? The Impact of Body Language Body … Continue reading

The Elephant in the Room

An Elephant in the Room

This week a story broke that the son of former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky, a convicted uild molester, was arrested on charges of child molestation himself. Needless to say that triggered an avalanche of nasty traffic onto my social media channels just like a few years ago when Jerry Sandusky was arrested.ckle I put this tweet out on Twitter: “To all who again invite me to spend eternity in hell, just a friendly reminder, I am Gerry with a … Continue reading

Three Ways to Use Questions to Improve Your Presentations

Four question marks

We often think of presentations as a formal way to answer questions.  You can also use questions as a way to improve the impact of your presentations. In this video, I’ll share with you three techniques for using questions that can have a dramatic and immediate impact on the quality of your presentation. It will also help you to engage your audience early and often in the presentation. And after you watch the video, leave me a comment. Let me … Continue reading

The Four Levels of Listening

And ear with sound waves

Google “how many words does the average person hear in a day” and you’ll get search results suggesting somewhere in the range of 20,000 to 100,000 words per day. To give you a reference point, a 200 page book has about 60,000 words. You hear a lot. But how well do you listen? Communicating involves more than just talking. You also have to listen. I believe the easiest way to grow as a communicator is to spend more time listening … Continue reading