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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

One Key Iidea for Keynotes - Opening Keynote

In a keynote speech it is better to present one key idea four different ways than it is to cram your keynote full of material that is guaranteed to miss the mark with 75% of the audience.

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Stay on Time! - Opening Keynote

Here a few ideas from EffectiveMeetings.com on the topic of staying on time:

* State that the meeting will begin promptly at the scheduled time and that all participants should be on time.

* Send a reminder e-mail thirty minutes before the meeting begins and encourage meeting participants to arrive on time.

* Ensure that you begin the meeting at the scheduled time. If you've encouraged others to be prompt, don't embarrass yourself by showing up late.

* Close the meeting room doors at the scheduled time.

* If your meeting starts a little late, still finish the meeting at the scheduled time. It's inconsiderate to assume the participants' schedules revolve around your meeting, so wrap up the meeting when you promised.

* Consider creating a "latecomer jar" to which meeting participants must contribute one dollar for each minute they arrive late to meetings. At the end of the week, you can buy muffins or donuts for everyone who attended the meeting… courtesy of the latecomers!

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Wednesday, July 08, 2015

You Can Learn at Any Age - Opening Keynote

Matthew Blakeslee, writing for Discover says, "If old dogs haven’t been able to learn new tricks, maybe that’s because no one has known how to teach them properly. Until quite recently orthodox neuroscience held that only the brains of young children are resilient, malleable, and morphable -- in a word, plastic."

"This neuroplasticity, as it is called, seems to fade steadily as the brain congeals into its fixed adult configuration. Infants can sustain massive brain damage, up to the loss of an entire cerebral hemisphere, and still develop into nearly normal adults; any adult who loses half the brain, by contrast, is a goner. Adults can’t learn to speak new languages without an accent, can’t take up piano in their fifties then go on to play at Carnegie Hall, and often suffer strokes that lead to permanent paralysis or cognitive deficiencies. The mature brain, scientists concluded, can only decline."

"It turns out this theory is not just wrong, it is spectacularly wrong. Two books, Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain (Ballantine) by science journalist Sharon Begley and The Brain That Changes Itself (Viking) by psychiatrist Norman Doidge, offer masterfully guided tours through the burgeoning field of neuroplasticity research. Each has its own style and emphasis; both are excellent."

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Thursday, July 02, 2015

My Three Blogs - Opening Keynote

If you have yet to visit my other two blogs, start the day off right by clicking below:
* for the time-pressured: www.breathingspaceblog.com
* for the constantly distracted: www.interruptionmanagement.com

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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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