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Friday, June 26, 2015

Flight Travel Trips - 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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Saturday, June 20, 2015

For a Better Presentation - Opening Keynote

Patricia Fripp, CSP, CPAE offers vital tips for being more effective as a speaker by drawing upon lessons from the movie industry:

The opening is key. In David Freeman's screen writing seminar, he specifies 16 ways to make the first three pages of a script "kick ass."  If these initial pages don't kick ass, producers don't read the rest of the script, they don't buy it, and they don't make your movie.

Start with a flavor scene. Good movies often open with a short clip, or flavor scene, designed to grab attention and position the audience for what is to come.  Think of the first 30 seconds of your speech as having importance equivalent to the first three pages of a movie script. Your flavor scene doesn't necessarily have to lead where the audience expects, but it should make an impact that ties into what follows.

Use scene changes

Early in a movie the hero commits to some course of action.  Rocky Balboa agrees to the heavy weight title fight. The sooner this happens, the sooner the audience gets emotionally involved. Get your audience interested in you in a similar way. The biggest enemy of a speaker, no matter how good, is "sameness" or lack of variety.

Statistics aren't sexy. Numbers are numbing. The material must compel the audience.

Why do you sometimes like a killer in the movies? Because Hollywood builds in the likeability factor, so that the audience ends up pulling for the villain despite that person’s flaws. If Hollywood film-makers can make audiences root for vicious murderers, then certainly the techniques they use can also win audiences over to your side. Build likeability into your characters when you are telling a story on stage. Identify the values, needs, and wants of your audience. Then, tell them about the characters who share these qualities.

When movies provide a compelling story and finish up with a heart-tugging or eye opening conclusion, they become unforgettable Oscar winners. The funniest or most exhilarating story will be pointless if you don't tie it into your theme and provide a lesson learned. When Ingrid Berman leaves Humphrey Bogart and gets on the plane to Casablanca it tells the audience that in wartime honor comes before love. The characters in great movies struggle against huge odds, demonstrating to audiences that it is better to lose then never try at all.

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Monday, June 15, 2015

Speaking Experience Surprises - 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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Sunday, June 07, 2015

Audience Participants Ask - Opening Keynote

In seminars and workshops I offer on having more Breathing Space, invariably someone poses a personal dilemma: "No matter how conscious I am of saving time throughout the day, I still find myself racing the clock. What, if anything, am I doing wrong?"

My answer, consider that any one-hour activity you undertake in the course of the day, each day, will consume one solid year out of the next 24 years of your life. One hour is to 24 hours as one year is to 24 years. With this realization, consider the cumulative effects of reading junk mail for only 30 minutes a day or spending 15 minutes a day in line at the bank -- both of which could and should be avoided if you used mail, phone, or email services.


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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Why Do People Volunteer? - Opening Keynote

Need help with your next meeting? Here is a roster of reasons why people volunteer:

1. Fill time
2. Repay a perceived indebtedness
3. Because someone they love benefits
4. To set an example for children
5. To work as a family
6. Someone they love is also involved
7. To meet people
8. To please someone else
9. To have fun
10. To gain skills
11. To gain experience
12. To be visible
13. To gain credit
14. To express their religion or belief
15. To find happiness
16. To employ otherwise unused gifts or skills
17. Because of tradition
18. As part of a group
19. To maintain health
20. To explore new learning, ideas
21. To heal
22. To avert loneliness
23. Because of interest
24. As a hobby
25. Out of concern
26. To receive a tax benefit
27. To counter-point paid work
28. As an extension of a job
29. Because they were assigned
30. To survive tragedy (cope)
31. To test leadership skills
32. To gain recognition
33. To acquire self-confidence
34. To be a change agent
35. To right a wrong
36. To work in a safe place
37. To save money
38. To have a purpose
39. To be a good neighbor
40. To get out of the house
41. To keep active
42. To experience new lifestyles
43. To feel a sense of power and success

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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Spend Less, Save Time - Opening Keynote

Patricia Fripp, CSP, CPAE offers eight tips for corporate meeting planners to save time and money:

Tip #1. After every meeting and event, do an "after action analysis." Write down what went right, what went wrong, what you would do differently if you were planning the meeting today, and who the vendors were who made your life easier.

Tip #2. In hiring vendors, do not always go for the lowest price. Whoever you hire, it affects your image. Reliability and follow-through are more important than a lower bid. Everyone is downsizing and looking for new ways to cut costs, but a vendor at a lower price may not be the answer.

Tip #3. Learn to make other people heroes. Whether dealing with vendors or people in other departments of your own company, if the person works hard and well, write a note of thanks to them and send a copy to their boss.

Tip #4. Make sure your speaker knows the terms used in your association, i.e. these people use "clients" not "customers." Also, alert the speaker to particulars of his/her audience...for example, mention the women in the audience are members, not spouses. One professional speaker was not warned and spoke "down" to his audience, making them feel bad, and the meeting planner look bad.

Tip #5. If you do mailings before a meeting or convention, be sure to put the speaker on the mailing list. This way the speaker knows what else is going on at the meeting, what the various topics are, if the schedule has been revised, and if his/her speaking time has been changed and no one remembered to tell the speaker.

Tip #6. If you are expecting a speaker to arrive the night before an event, leave them a note asking them to let the meeting planner know they have actually arrived. If you know the speaker has in fact arrived, you will undoubtedly sleep better. Leave an emergency number where you can always be reached.

Tip #7. Don't save the best for last. Often corporations take their top performers to a fancy resort for a meeting of several days. They have one important outside speaker and they want to send the employees back to work with a bang. You will get more value for your money if you schedule the speaker the first day instead of the last. At the end of the conference the employees may be tired, hungover, or worried about packing and making the plane.

Tip #8. Use E-mail. Get on-line with networks of meeting planners who can share their experiences. Find a group similar to yours and find out the names of the most successful speakers they have used and which vendors made their lives difficult or easy.

Call 800-634-3035 or email to learn about her speaking, or coaching.

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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Topic of the Century: Work-life Balance - Opening Keynote

Work-life balance -- the term is referred to so often, you'd think that most people know what it means. In Mark Sanborn's insightful leadership blog, my recent guest article defines work-life balance and identifies the six supporting disciplines:

                            * Self Management
                            * Time Management
                            * Stress Management
                            * Change Management
                            * Technology Management
                            * Leisure Management


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