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Saturday, July 21, 2018

Out of the Ordinary Speaking Experiences - Opening Keynote

Prior to my speech to a group of managers in Bangkok, Thailand, I was told that audience members would periodically be leaving the room to take cell phone calls. To my surprise, every single member of the audience, at least two or three times each, left during his presentation to take calls. So for the entire session, people were constantly coming and going as I spoke.

On short notice, I was requested to speak in Zurich to Swissotel's general managers from their 16 facilities around the world. Because I had departed the previous afternoon from Los Angeles and arrived in Switzerland that morning, I only had time for a 30-minute nap before I had to get dressed, come downstairs, and address the group. The speech went exceedingly well, and apparently no one knew the difference!

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Sunday, July 15, 2018

Great Advice, from Yourself - Opening Keynote

A friend of mine in the speaking business had just finished giving a presentation and, characteristically, many people lined up to speak to him. One woman asked him a question, in the form of “would you recommend doing XYZ?” His response was, “Yes. That sounds pretty good,” to which she replied, “Well it's in your book on page 156.”

Sometimes we need to review what we've written before we get front of audiences because they've reviewed what we've written.

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Friday, July 06, 2018

Cooperating with Speakers Bureaus - Opening Keynote

Here are five advantages of working with a speakers bureau for meeting planners:

1) Should the situation arise in which you are not happy with the speaker's performance or any other aspect of your interaction with the speaker, you have a legitimate third party, the bureau, to handle your concerns. You are in a position of even greater leverage because it is in the bureau's best and long-term interest to ensure that you are happy.

2) The bureau's loyalty is to you--you are the customer--not the speaker they assign to meet your needs. Some speakers never quite understand that, but the bureaus have a very clear understanding of who signs the checks.

3) In the rare event that the original speaker cannot make the appointed date, the bureau can more easily get you the right back-up speaker than if you face this task by yourself, especially at the last minute.

4) Many bureaus require speakers to sign various pledges indicating, for example, that they will abide by certain travel expense limitations, not use offensive or off-color language, and so on. In this manner, working with the bureau affords many more protections than you might otherwise have when working with a speaker directly.

5) The bureau can also help enforce your policies regarding selling from the platform and engaging in other types of promotional behavior. A small percentage of speakers will flat out upset the tone of your meeting by using a portion of their time in front of your group to engage in aggressive marketing. The incidence of this happening when retaining speakers through a bureau is far less, and for the most part can be eliminated all together.

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Thursday, June 28, 2018

My Guiding Force: Breathing Space - Opening Keynote

One afternoon, while I was speaking on the phone to a mentor, he mentioned that he needed to "get some breathing space." I wrote down those words.

The phrase became one of the powerful guiding forces in my life. From that conversation, I devised the Breathing Space Institute, wrote the book Breathing Space, and have since given more than 800 hundred lectures for audiences across the nation and around the world on managing the daily pace with grace, mastering information from any communication overload, and, of course, having more breathing space.

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Saturday, June 23, 2018

After-Conference Follow-through - Opening Keynote

Conference follow-up is as rigorous as anything else for a meeting planner! When the convention is over, in addition to addressing hundreds of details, you scamper back onto the plane or into your car and head home.

You still have tasks to fulfill or requests to honor. There are items to box up and ship back. Checks need dispensing to vendors, service providers, speakers, rental companies, and the meeting facility. Notes need to be typed up and reports written, updates made, membership categories modified, and next year's convention plans altered.

Realistically, however, there will be time for the post-meeting tasks even if you take a day or two off. So for now, let the meeting be over. You're proud of your accomplishment, but you're worn to a frazzle. What steps can you take to ensure you'll get the rest and relaxation you deserve?

Rather than trying to take care of all your paperwork on the fly, pack up at the speed of sound, and drive or fly back to your office along with the rest of the participants, why not plan your next meeting so that you can spend an extra day or two resting and recuperating before heading back?

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Thursday, June 07, 2018

Choose Effectiveness - Opening Keynote

Making deeply pronounced choices is an efficient way to get in control of life. An essential choice for all meeting planner is choosing to feel worthy and complete, especially at the height of your major convention--where every little mishap can seem as if it's much larger than it really is.

Simply say to yourself: "I choose to feel worthy and complete,"and helps to reduce anxiety, stay calm and feel more relaxed. Depending on how long it's been since you've felt worthy and complete, you may have to make this choice for many days or weeks running. But keep at it.

By choosing to feel worthy and complete, you automatically redirect the inner and outer you to accept that there is nothing you must do or must finish. Everything is based on your choice. If you choose to continue working on some task, even one assigned to you, the choice is made in the present moment, not based on a prior agenda.

A worthy and complete feeling yields a tremendous sense of inner harmony.

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Friday, June 01, 2018

Infections from Conference Participation - Opening Keynote

Based on a study undertaken at the University of New South Wales, people touch their eyes mouth or nose, all entry points for infection, an average of 45 times per hour. So, at conferences, where people encounter a vast array of door knobs, levers, and switches, the potential to return home ill increases dramatically.

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