Use Less “I” and More “They” in Presentations

Professionals gathered around a conference table for presentations.

The fastest way to improve your presentations and your presentation skills is to get over yourself. Once you get over the idea that the presentation is about you, then getting up in front of the room or in front of a camera gets far easier. There’s a powerful shift that takes place when you change one thing about your approach to presentations: your focus. The shift in focus of your presentations When you focus less on yourself and more on … Continue reading

How to Influence Audience Perception in Presentations

Presenter delivering straight on to an audience.

Understanding how to influence audience perception in presentations begins with understanding the lasting power of presentations. Think for a moment about the last presentation you attended. What do you remember from that? What was your perception of the presenter? The Power and Speed of Perception If you’re like most people, you remember the perception more clearly than the content. There are plenty of reasons for that. One of the biggest reasons is we form perceptions quickly and then spend most … Continue reading

How to Handle an Emergency Presentation or Interview on Skype

Man with cellphone handling emergency presentation on Skype

The nature of emergencies is you don’t see them coming. Unfortunately in the era of Skype and video conferencing, an emergency can mean everyone else can see you caught off guard. The trick is finding a way to be your best when you don’t have time to look your best. I can help you there. Welcome to Skype emergencies In the age of video conferencing, an emergency can quickly become a Skype emergency. And even though you didn’t see it … 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

Beware of Jargon in Your Presentation

Videographer pointing a camera at you

If you had a talk-back interview set up with CNN, a producer or cameraperson would give you an IFB, an interruptible feedback, to use during the interview. Are you good with that? Probably not. Because you likely don’t speak TV. And like any language, if you don’t speak that language it’s just noise, not communication, to you. Use layperson’s language The producer or cameraperson would give you one of those squiggly earpieces, the kind you see Secret Service Agents wearing. … Continue reading

A Magic Pill Won’t Cure Stage Fright

Yellow warning sign

Wouldn’t it be great if you take a magic pill to cure stage fright? You can. If you’re a doctor. I media coached a doctor several years ago who experienced extreme stage fright before TV interviews or before a presentation. He told me he prescribed himself the beta-block propranolol. It’s called a beta blocker because it blocks the flow of adrenaline in your system. Research Findings Researchers at the University of Amsterdam published findings last year that propranolol reduced anxiety in a … Continue reading

Stop Trying To Avoid Stage Fright!

Woman walking on the beach

Performers who know the most about stage fright stop trying to avoid stage fright. A popular music group spends hours on stage every night—sometimes several days a week, several weeks a month. It adds up to hundreds of hours over the course of a year, thousands of hours over the course of a few years. And still many of them get stage fright. Kelly Zutrau, the lead singer of Wet said in an interview with Fuse that she doesn’t try … Continue reading

Why Every Professional Man Should Keep a Blue Blazer Handy

A man's blue blazer on a coat rack.

You almost always have a presentation on your schedule well ahead of time, but media interviews don’t always come with enough time to schedule. And sometimes you do need to fill-in last minute for someone in your organization who couldn’t make the presentation. That’s why every professional man should keep a blue blazer handy at the office. It’s the most versatile jacket because you can use it to dress up or down depending on the situation and the media outlet. … Continue reading

How One Movie Star Manages Stage Fright

Actor standing at a podium on stage

Movie star Ethan Hawke co-stars with  Johnny Simmons and Paul Giamatti in an upcoming movie called “The Phenom,” about a young baseball player, a thoughtful mentor and a troubled father. In discussing the movie, Hawke admitted to suffering at times in his career from near-dibhlitating stage fright. To push his way through it, Hawke says he turned to a concert pianist Seymour Bernstein for advice.  In an interview in the Huffington Post, Hawke says the big thing he learned from Bernstein was … Continue reading

Stage Fright: Why You Get It & What To Do With It

A distressed woman looking into the camera

State fright, performance anxiety, pre-game jitters, a case of the “nerves.” We call it by many different names but it’s all the same thing. And it happens to everyone. Yes, even the biggest music stars, political stars, business icons, and sports stars feel performance anxiety before stepping on stage, stepping into a debate, or stepping over a three-foot putt that could win the Masters. Sir Richard Branson and Warren Buffett both say they had enormous stage fright early in their … Continue reading