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Your Presence is Everything About You

There is this flawed perception that comes up in workshops all the time. And that perception is that “presence” is primarily created by the way one dresses, acts and speaks. We hear it all the time. First-time participants in our workshops want to separate the overall presentation performance into separate buckets: “Okay, let’s work on […]

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The Psychological Challenge of Brevity

We had a great conversation with clients recently, in one of our Persuasive Communication Skills Workshops. And the topic of this conversation was typical. We were discussing with participants the need for getting to the point in the 21st century business world. And several of the participants were politely but firmly pushing back, concerned that I was coaching […]

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5 Solutions to Classic Communication Problems

If your communication problem is time, then brevity is your friend. Make sure to shorten your message significantly. Reduce your information to a list of “three things,” so that your message is easier to remember. If your communication problem is attention span, then a “hook” is your friend. Work hard to connect with your audience […]

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3 Keys to Stronger Audience Retention

Your audience will only remember a small percentage of what you say. Some studies suggest it will be less than 20%. Fact. Other studies suggest that the average adult attention span is now about 8 seconds. Bummer. So what do you do about it? Focus on all three aspects of the audience experience: Make sure […]

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One Meeting, Two Meetings, Short Meetings, Few Meetings

Here are some stats that will shock you: The average American employee attends 62 meetings per month, half of which are described by those same workers as a “total waste of time.” That translates into 31 hours per month, per employee of unproductive time. In addition, 45% of those polled felt “overwhelmed” by the number […]

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The Metrics Of Persuasion: Two Key Variables In A Presentation

Originally posted with the Forbes Coaches Council, April 2019 Maybe this has happened to you: You walk into a conference room fully confident that you’ve prepared well and put together a crisp, persuasive presentation that will instantly wow your audience. The proposal you’ve developed is clearly the right choice, and you know the numbers that support your […]

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Why It’s So Important to Be a Good Listener

We write and speak frequently on the importance of being a good listener. But most of our content is usually focused on listening tactics — how to listen better. But today I want to write about why it is so important to listen well. Listening, at its most basic level, is essentially a commitment to two-way […]

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5 Keys to Building Support Around Your Idea

We spend a lot of time here coaching people on how to get the outcomes they want. And in some cases, the outcome is a sale of a product or a service. But in many cases, the outcome is the “sale” of an idea or a plan. The vast majority of persuasion that happens in the […]

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True Persuasion Comes from Being More than a Messenger

So often in preparing to communicate, we make a fundamental mistake: we enter a messenger mindset. Rather than establishing a clear goal and aiming to persuade our audience, we set out to inform, to update, to share. On this path, we end our inquiry with a period: here’s what I need to say, full stop. But […]

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Jaws Vs. Glossophobia – Attack of the Podium II

In my last post, I used Chief Brody’s character from Jaws fame as an example of how our fight or flight system is triggered. Its manifestations run from sudden dry mouth, sweaty palms, flushed neck, butterflies in our stomach, and a brain that sputters like an old Fiat rather than performing like the Porsche 911 […]

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