Public Speaking Craziness – Handling Critical Fumbles

Public Speaking Craziness – Handling Critical Fumbles

Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field in the first quarter of the Buffalo/Cincinnati “Monday Night Football” game. He suffered cardiac arrest and he is now (at time of posting) in critical condition.

Players knelt, cried and prayed. Fans stood up quietly and prayed. Sports commentators showed shock and emotion.

What struck my husband, Jimmy, and me as we watched this terrifying situation unfold:

  • Fact 1: This matchup is considered the biggest regular-season game in the 22-year history of Paycor Stadium.
  • Fumble Fact 1: Priorities can change in an instant.
  • Fact 2: Practice, preparation and performance create positive outcomes. These teams were ready to play.
  • Fumble Fact 2: Real-time trumps real-plans.
  • Fact 3: Two teams play a game and one team wins.
  • Fumble Fact 3: Rules change depending on situational context.

How this traumatic situation relates to you

As speakers and leaders you experience critical fumbles too.

Here are some crisis management guidelines when let’s say … a pandemic strikes, a tornado destroys your building, or an attendee at your meeting faints:

  1. Communicate with your team. All of a sudden the Bills and Bengals were no longer rivals. The coaches conferred. The players from both sides united.
  2. Listen. Get the facts as they unfold.
  3. Follow your mission/value statement. Take the action steps that you’ve already defined for your business.
  4. Have perspective and weigh the options. “Monday Night Football” postponed the game. Damar Hamlin’s health crisis became more important.

In business and life you play the game and you give the presentation you’ve prepared for.

And when those fumbles happen, you stop, prioritize, find perspective, communicate, listen and go in a different direction.

#Communication  #KarenCortellReisman  #SpeakForYourself   #CommunicationFumbles

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The trick to sounding conversational at the lectern

The trick to sounding conversational at the lectern

Did you learn in grade school that when you give a presentation you must “act” a certain way?

Going full Shakespeare

Here’s what we see with our Speak For Yourself® clients: When you stand up to deliver your message you transform! The real you goes missing and you go full Shakespeare. Or, conversely, you become muted.

Where did “you” go?

The best mental exercise to sound like yourself at the lectern & reduce performance anxiety

Three steps:

  1. Think about a friend that you meet with to just hang out and talk.
  2. What’s the location? Where are you when you have these chats?
  3. What are you drinking? (Doesn’t have to be alcoholic.)

Some recent client responses:

  • Person: His brother. Watering hole: A campsite at their 700 acre family ranch. Drink: Blanton’s Bourbon
  • His mother. Back porch by the pool. Iced tea with lime and mint.
  • Her husband. Their Crested Butte house on the deck – drinking chilled dry Grey Goose martini.

When you are giving a speech imagine you’re talking to your buddy, in your favorite hang-out location, sipping on your drink of choice.

THAT’S the voice and tone you want to project at your board meeting, panel, or quarterly townhall.

Fill in these blanks and add to our blog comments. Picture that set up at your next event. You will sound conversational and like you.

Person: _____________   Watering hole: _______________  Drink:  _______________

 So, tonight when I’m being interviewed as a “Local Legend” of National Speakers Association – N. TX Chapter I’m going to imagine I’m with my husband,  sitting on the porch of our Star Ranch, sipping Glenlivet neat.

PS: check out our new website!  www.speakforyourself.com

#Communication   #SpeakForYourself   #KarenCortellReisman   #SoundCoversational

The biggest mistakes novice speakers make

The biggest mistakes novice speakers make

Even CEOs and veteran presenters commit these presentation skills’ crimes!

COMMUNICATION MISTAKE #1: Misunderstanding audience expectations.

Don’t be the team that works only on presenting your solutions to the client or prospect. Be the group that gathers this intel first:

Where is prospect pain? What makes them tick? What are they good at? Who competes with them? Where can they improve? What defines success for them? How knowledgeable are they about your topic? Experience range?

COMMUNICATION MISTAKE #2: Memorizing your speech.

Don’t commit your speech to memory. Just know how you will start and how you will end.

Do create a fabulous outline. Call us and we’ll share our 8-step ©SFY Presentation Blueprint with you.

Do practice your material out loud and time it.

COMMUNICATION MISTAKE #3: Spending 100% of prep time on creating PowerPoint slides.

Don’t be the speaker that dumps EVERYTHING onto a ppt presentation and then reads the slides. Your visuals should be “visual” and used as support material. You are the main visual.

Exception: When a ppt deck needs to “stand alone” as a takeaway for investors etc.

Avoid these mistakes and keep on speaking. It’s fun, I promise!

#communication   #speakforyourself   #karencortellreisman   #speakermistakes

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Holiday Gift Guide to Speak with Confidence

Holiday Gift Guide to Speak with Confidence

What should you get yourself in order to speak with confidence?

We @ Speak For Yourself® have curated the best gifts, by category, to help you check this quest off your gift-buying list.

Inexpensive 

A smile, good posture, and effective eye contact cost nothing.

Have you heard the phrase, “Fake it till you make it?” You may feel uncomfortable but you can appear as if you own Manhattan by your facial expression, stance and eyeball connection.

Clothing & Accessories 

Buy clothes you love that fit the group and venue you’re speaking at.

Buy shoes that you can stand in, for hours, that look great. (Good luck.) For women – I’ve seen some fabulous post-pandemic glittery sneakers that have rocked the stage.

Self-care 

Buy yourself a Story Journal. Write down the funny stuff that happens. Keep a story log of events inside and outside your professional world. Then find ways to make these stories relevant when you run your company town halls / strategic retreats / quarterly zoom meetings. You will resonate more with your various audiences, which in turn will increase your confidence.

Tech

Besides the obvious – your computer, auxiliary cords, and remote wireless clicker if you use visuals, also purchase back up batteries, a decent pen, old fashioned note pad, and a thumb drive with your material (even if everything is in the cloud). Having your tech arsenal ready and available will add to your comfort level.

Food & Drink

Some of my clients beg me to agree that a shot of vodka will boost confident communication. No. That won’t work, and your holiday gift list to yourself does not include a trip to your wine store. Here are foods and a great drink that will boost your energy:

  • Some type of protein or a protein shake.
  • Easy food that will not drip onto your clothes like a piece of fruit or nuts.
  •  (I always take a protein bar, a banana and some nuts to my speaking venues to snack on.)
  • Your best drink: room temp water to hydrate your vocal cords.
  • OK –  chocolates are always a good thing to have on hand.

Can you think of other items to add to our holiday Communicate With Confidence gift list?

#communication   #SpeakForYourself   #KarenCortellReisman   #ConfidentCommunicationHolidayGiftList

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Small Talk Desert

Small Talk Desert

Are we in a conversational crisis?

Even before the pandemic the emphasis has been on digital communication. During the pandemic you may have experienced minimal conversation especially in person.

Now you might be feeling the pain of resuming small talk back in the office.

Recently…

Jim and I meet in-person with our financial advisor group after two years of periodic virtual meetings. I find myself saying, just seconds after sitting down, “Ok, what’s our plan? Do we need to review, reframe, revisit…?”

Tommy replies with a smile, “First… how are you? What’s going on with your work and family?”

Oh… that’s right … I forget the chatting part of our visit.

What is the value of small talk?

According to Fast Company, “From the polite chitchat among coworkers that eases the start of a stressful meeting to building powerful bridges at networking events, small talk has always been an important ‘social lubricator’ that builds trust and relationships across cultures—even more so for early-career professionals after graduation.”

Is small talk a waste of time?

You might say “yes”. Covid created a time warp. Namely – 30 minutes is the new hour. You’re busy, stressed and want results… now. You only have so much Attention Economy.

And yet.

Small talk is not a waste of time.

Think about an interaction you’ve had with a barista. Smiling, making eye contact and exchanging a few sentences while ordering your Venti Chai has been found to boost happiness and feelings of belonging.

A quick chat with someone you barely know can uplift your mood or avert feelings of loneliness.

A few brief interactions help gauge the mood of a room and the tone of a discussion.

Professionally, small talk presents opportunities to get to know and hear your clients. You may learn something new about the customer that you can then use in later conversation, or one interaction may turn into someone signing a deal with your company.

Most of all … according to psychologist Susan Pinker, social interaction (including small talk) is the #1 secret to living a longer life.

So, how are you? What’s going on with your family and friends these days?

 

#communication    #SpeakForYourself     #KarenCortellReisman   #SmallTalkDesert

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