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Friday, November 24, 2017

Supporting Materials - Opening Keynote

The best speakers have all their supporting materials readily available: Undoubtedly, before your scheduled event, you'll need a biography, an introduction, a write-up of the presentation, and perhaps a photo of the speaker. The seasoned pro has such items and others readily available. These aren't things he or she has to go round up; top professional speakers offer such elements online so that you can examine them at will.

When these materials are not readily available, it may a sign that something is amiss -- a speaker without a portfolio is like a firefighter without a hose.

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Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Tips for Flights - Opening Keynote

If you're flying mid-day, wear your sunglasses because ultraviolet rays from the sun are more potent: especially if you're flying above the clouds. To read, lower the window cover and use the overhead lighting.

Carry your own small water bottle on board to avoid having to ask flight attendants for drinks. Also, when the meal is served before the beverage, you're able to wet your whistle while you eat. Half the battle of flying is remaining hydrated. It's better to go to the restroom four times because you've been hydrating yourself than to land exhausted and need four days to catch up.

Bring your own snacks (carrots, sliced cucumbers, other watery vegetables; apples, pears, and other fruits), but not candy or dead carbohydrates such as chips, crackers, or dehydrating foods. Even the worst of airline meals will go down more easily if you eat your own nutritious snacks before or after. These will help keep you regular, and your whole trip will go better.

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Thursday, November 02, 2017

Overcoming Audience Resistance - Opening Keynote

Noted speaker, author, and High Point University president Nido Qubien has observed that "Barriers resulting from audience resistance fall into two categories: external factors that cause people to tune you out, and internal factors that prevent them from giving you their complete attention."

1) External Barriers
People often form first impressions on the basis of external factors, says Qubien. "If the first impression is negative, you won't get the person's attention. Look for characteristics of dress, speech and actions that may be turning people off. If your dress is too casual, frivolous or distracting, you may be losing listeners. If your voice is strident, shrill or guttural, people may find you unpleasant to listen to. In certain areas, regional accents may turn people off. If you speak with a pronounced regional accent and are doing business in a region where that accent is not commonly heard, you may have to look for ways to overcome this barrier. You may want to work on acquiring a more generic accent. Or you may want to spend some time cultivating the person's confidence."

2) Internal Barriers
"Internal barriers to communication may stem from a lack of interest in what you're saying or a lack of understanding," he says. "If you discern a lack of interest, find some way to lead your listener to identify with your message. How does it concern your listener personally? What bearing does it have on the listener's job, income, health, family, or security? Once you establish that point of identity, you'll have attention."

In conclusion, "People have a way of erecting defense mechanisms and emotional barriers when they feel threatened by what you are saying or by the way you are saying it," notes Qubien. "Studies have repeatedly shown that people, like other creatures, feel protective of their territories. Invade those turfs, or act in a threatening manner, and you will be sure to turn off their attention. When your task is to deliver an unpleasant message or to persuade your listener to take some unpleasant action, look for ways to neutralize the negatives and to reassure the person who feels threatened."

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Sunday, October 29, 2017

The Impact of Good Speaker - Opening Keynote

A strong positive reaction from the audience members and the visible exhibition of learning are desirable outcomes for any speaker. A larger question, however, is "what impact did the presentation have on job performance?"

It behooves you to make follow-up efforts to determine what changes in behavior, if any, on the parts your audience members resulted from a speaker’s presentation. Have audience members done anything differently since the presentation? Has their behavior changed? Has their performance improved? Do groups handle their responsibilities with greater ease? The simple speaker evaluation rating sheets that audience members complete directly following the presentation don't and can't answer these types of questions.


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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Communications, Writing Etiquette, and Public Speaking - Opening Keynote


Emily Sorenson, Education Outreach Specialist at www.csccr.org offer these selected resources for communications, writing etiquette, and public speaking... and observes that these resources are free and publicly accessible:

Student Guide to Public Speaking: Tips, Resources, and Inspiration www.accreditedschoolsonline.org/resources/student-public-speaking-guide

Writing the Perfect Resume: How to Make an Eyecatcher
www.learnhowtobecome.org/resume-guide

Activism in School: A Guidebook to Getting Your Voice Heard
www.accreditedschoolsonline.org/resources/student-activism-on-campus

How to Succeed as a Tutor: Career Skills, Resources, and Certification Information www.learnhowtobecome.org/tutor

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Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Choose a Big Meeting Room! - Opening Keynote

As recently as a few years ago, 30% of white-collar workers still had private offices, based on a poll of 9,300 people by office furniture maker Steelcase. However the typical office has shrunk. It was about 16 by 20 feet many years ago, declining to 8 by 10 feet.... So, 320 square feet versus 80 square feet.

For meetings then, choose larger rooms. People in tiny cramped offices will appreciate it!


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Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Good or Bad?: Surpise Speaking Experiences - Opening Keynote

When I was retained to speak on board a cruise ship to the National Association of Women Business Owners, I was surprised and pleased to discover that I was the only male presenter on board!

Another time, I presented a half-day seminar to a group of association executives who were given nothing for breakfast and nothing during the breaks except for coffee or tea. By the third hour of the presentation, blood sugar levels and attention spans were dropping all over the room. Had I known in advance, I would have brought bagels and cream cheese for everyone!

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