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Monday, September 19, 2016

Peaks, and Endings - Opening Keynote

Nobel-prize winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman has shown that recollection of past experiences is almost entirely determined by two things: 1) how the experience felt when it was at its peak and 2) how it felt when it ended.

When people evaluate past experience, they only recall two things: how it felt at the peak and whether it got better or worse at the end. As a result, a slight improvement, even an improvement from "intolerable" to "pretty bad," makes the whole experience seem better, and a bad ending makes everything seem worse. This "peak-end" rule is how we summarize the experience and then we rely on that summary to remember how the experience felt.

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Monday, September 12, 2016

Try These Tongue Twisters - Opening Keynote

Tongue twisters have their place in the life of career professionals and all others who stand up before a group and “say a few words.” The more adept we become at diction, enunciation, and articulation, the better we can be for our audiences.

Here are two tongue twisters that I created, by accident – I tripped over each of them on the first encounter:
                * enriched white rice
                * fried white rice

Here are twelve other tongue twisters that I collected from the internet. Many of them can be said easily enough the first time, but the second time... well you try them:

    * Frogfeet, flippers, and swimfins
    * Green glass globes glow greenly
    * Red Buick or blue Buick
    * He threw three free throws

    * Iranian uranium
    * Three short sword sheaths
    * Freshly-fried flying fish
    * Unique New York

    * Imagine an imaginary menagerie manager
    * The epitome of femininity
    * A skunk sat on a stump
    * Green Greek grapes

When you master these, don't be surprised if your elocution skills in general improve, it's a natural outcome of the exercises you have undertaken.

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Friday, September 02, 2016

Observations from "The How of Wow" - Opening Keynote

Observations from The How of Wow by Tony Carlson:

* According to Carlson only 1 in 500 speeches is good enough to be remembered. To be among those remembered, Carlson says you need to give audiences insight, enlightenment, meaning, stimulation, wit, and entertainment.

* Few speakers ever rehearse enough. Every extra moment you have ought to go into rehearsing.

* Your opening line can be a shocker that lets the audience know you mean business. Don't be afraid to say something that people already suspect, but no one will say except for you.

* Show your vulnerability early in the speech.

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Sunday, August 21, 2016

Your Exhausted Audience Participants - Opening Keynote

Five years ago and still a vital issue: "For years, sleep researchers have been preaching the dangers of lost sleep: People who are fatigued can't pay attention to routine tasks, have trouble learning and are prone to a laundry list of health problems, from depression to high blood pressure," said Kathleen Facklemann in USA Today

"New research suggests an added risk to losing sleep day after day: Humans and animals that have chronic sleep deprivation might reach a point at which the very ability to catch up on lost sleep is damaged, according to Fred Turek, a sleep researcher at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois."

The upshot for speakers and meeting planners: more than half of what your audiences require from a presentation is high energy.

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Sunday, August 14, 2016

Results Count Most - Opening Keynote

On April 26, 1961, Roger Maris of the New York Yankees began his run at Babe Ruth's single-season home run record with the first of 61 home runs. Maris connected in the 5th inning against Detroit right-hander Paul Foytack. What makes this fact particularly significant is that the Yankees had already played 20 games in the 1961 season. So, it's not how you begin a venture, it's how you end.

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Sunday, August 07, 2016

Available and Responsible - Opening Keynote

For any large meeting you’re holding, the responsiveness and availability of the AV staff can be crucial:

* Is the staff immediately accessible and located on the meeting floor?

* Is the AV specialist able to handle all equipment problems?

* How responsive is the staff to requests from the coordinator, trainer, or speaker?

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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Take Charge of Your Technology - Opening Keynote

On any given day, each of us is so sorely bombarded by the number of advertisements, commercial messages, and information streaming our way that it is no longer practical to discuss "getting away from it all." Indeed, most people carry some kind of mobile device that all but guarantees that they will continue to remain in the information shower regardless of the location, the time of day, or other factors.

Sundays offer no respite, nor do holidays. Every day, a non-stop stream of information, instruction, advice, directions, warnings, opportunities, and tempting offers. Is it any wonder that people from all walks of life these days, from CEOs of major organization to newly-hired, part time workers at fast food restaurants are feeling the pinch of too much to do, too much to respond to, and too much to keep up with, in our ever more complex world?

It's time to rule our technology and information-intake systems and not let them rule us.

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