Maximizing Your Speaking Potential

151208_Speaking Tips_v4Last week I had the opportunity to chair the Women in Project Management Leadership Summit 2015 here in Auckland, New Zealand. It gave me a chance to hear every speaker over the two days of the event. With a few minor exceptions, each speaker had a 35 minute time slot followed by a 10 minute Question and Answer session. This post is to share with you what stood out for me in regards to the Speaker’s presentations. I’ve done this in the form of Speaking Tips and trust that others who do speak or aspire to speak at such events will gain value from my observations.

As this was a ‘Women in Project Management’ conference the audience and all the speakers were female; however, I think these tips would apply to a mixed gender event as well.

  1. Generally, the simpler and clearer the presentation; the better the response was from the audience. If you’re talk is complex find a way to portray it simplistically by using great graphics or by telling a story or using an analogy to make your point. Please don’t overwhelm the audience with too much detail.
  2. If your presentation has a lot of detail in it and you are worried about fitting it all into the given time slot, that’s a sign it is too long. Zero in on one to three key points related to the topic that would benefit those in attendance and delete the rest. You will leave a far better impression and the audience will thank you for doing this.
  3. Ask yourself, ‘Does my presentation answer the most obvious 1-3 questions posed by the topic of my talk and is it tailored to my audience?’ This will help you to zero in on the key takeaways for that particular audience.
  4. Additional questions you might ask yourself, particularly if you are a regular speaker on your topic are, ‘Do I need to update my material? And, what are the latest metrics? Would a few key metrics help to make my point?’ With the speed of change currently going on in the business world you might find that your material is out of date and you don’t even know it. One superb benefit of being on LinkedIn is that if you are reading the posts and other information coming through your feed you will be aware of the latest trends and new information that is having an impact in your area of expertise. I highly recommend keeping abreast of the changes or you may find yourself out on a limb and without your next speaking opportunity. If you are employed, you might find yourself out of job as well, but that’s another post.
  5. Be Yourself. If you are nervous, it’s ok to say so. In fact, doing so is likely to lesson your nerves and warm the audience to you.
  6. Speakers who offered tips, tools, techniques and templates were very well received by the audience; however, as a speaker please be clear on what, for example, the technique or template is named so that it can be found when googled, or tell us specifically where these can be accessed after the conference.
  7. Some of the speakers were using the opportunity to speak as a personal developmental tool. A key message that came through was ‘Be Brave’. Say, ‘Yes, Yes, Yes’, to the opportunity before you have a chance to doubt your ability to speak in front of an audience.
  8. For those of you who are feeling overwhelmed just at the thought of point #7 above, joining an organisation such as toastmasters or enrolling in a Public Speaking course might be your first step. Having been a person who in earlier times could not speak in front of an audience and who has had the experience of totally bombing at a speaking engagement in the early stages of my speaking career, I would suggest finding a safe place to begin your speaking journey. That might also mean accepting shorter speaking opportunities such as at a meeting where you might speak for 2-10 minutes. Take stepping stones along the way, rather than one giant step to the big stage. And yes, you can still count yourself as ‘Being Brave’.
  9. If you as a speaker require something specific, ask the chairperson for whatever it is that you need, preferably in advance of your talk. For example, if you need to sit rather than stand for your presentation for physical reasons, don’t be afraid to ask for a chair.
  10. One thing the attendees really appreciated was the chance to mix with the speaker after their talk. If you are a speaker and don’t plan to attend the whole event, stay for the next tea or lunch break and/or, if possible, come back for the networking reception normally held at the end of Day 1. Make yourself available for any further questions. If you followed the points above, you will probably receive some great feedback at this time as well.
  11. Please check in with the chair upon arrival so that they know you are there and can fill you in on any procedural details in advance of your talk. This is much easier than the chair having to interrupt you when you are knee deep in conversation with a conference attendee just prior to your talk.
  12. And last, but not least, know that you will not please everyone no matter how good your presentation is.  Do the best that you can and have a Learning Mindset in order to gain as much as possible from your experience. This includes assessing the feedback and making any necessary changes for the next time you speak.

And remember,

You don’t have to be perfect to be incredible!

As a speaker or conference attendee, you too may have some additional points to add to this conversation. I invite you to do so in the comments below.

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Posted in Career Development, Conferences, Personal Development, Presenting, Resilience, Soar to Success, Speaking, Tips and Tools, Workshops | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Do You Have a Plan to Deal With the Unexpected?

What do you do when something happens ‘out of the blue’ like the other day when my landlord announced they were going to either increase the rent by a whopping 32% or sell the property.  Not that this is the worse thing that can happen to a person, but just the same a significant happening and a major disruption as it means moving not only my business but also my personal life since I operate my business out of my home.  This announcement also came with the landlord in tears on my doorstep as this decision was the consequent of difficult times for them as well.  At the same time I received an email from an acquaintance that was facing possible redundancy and in quite a distressed state and another acquaintance that had just been made redundant and was worried about finding a new position so that they could meet their financial obligations.  It seems no matter where you turn these days people are going through difficult times and having to deal with unexpected ‘out of the blue’ situations.  For many they are stressed to the max and finding it quite difficult to cope with the changes at hand. This got me wondering whether or not people have a plan, a process, or a procedure that they follow in these circumstances or do they find themselves totally at the whim of their emotions?  It would seem the latter for some.  These people often end up distraught, confused, and drained of energy and find themselves making poor decisions that can have repercussions down the track. Below is a strategy that I’ve used when helping clients deal with the unexpected or in situations where I, myself, have had to deal with the unexpected.  You might find it of value too.

  • CALM DOWN.  Breathe deeply.  Long, slow deep breaths will help you to relax.
  • Delay making any immediate decisions.  Seldom is a decision required on the spot.  A delay gives you valuable time that can be used to your advantage.  It gives you time to settle down and think things through to ensure a good decision is made.
  • Deal with your emotions. We are emotional beings so a reaction on this level is normal but it is the emotions that get in the way of clear thinking and good decision making so don’t ignore them.  Give yourself the time required to come to terms with the situation on an emotional level.
  • Ensure you get all the facts in the situation. When we first read or hear about something unexpected our emotions can interfere with our interpretation of the situation.  Once we have calmed down from our initial reaction it is wise to go back and re-read or clarify what was said to ensure we have interpreted the situation correctly.
  • Be solution focused. This requires you to move beyond your emotions and out of victim consciousness.  It means taking responsibility and moving forward rather than sitting in a state of blame, ‘poor me’, hopelessness or any other form of negative emotions.
  • Take time to reflect on the facts and to come up with a range of options.  Be resourceful, flexible and creative in determining your options.  Do think outside the square.  Don’t rush this part of the process for it is in our reflection time that we access the more creative aspects of our minds.
  • Take time to reflect and consider the pros and cons of each option and any additional consequences. Imagine what it would be like if you selected a particular option – live it and breathe it in your mind as if it were actually happening.  Do this for each option so that you can really feel what it would be like if you chose to implement that option.  Notice any consequences that you hadn’t as yet thought about.
  • Pay attention to your feelings.  They will provide you with additional information to consider prior to making your decision.  Notice where in your body you feel your feelings and consider what they might mean.  If you dream a lot pay attention to these as well.  From my experience, dreams don’t lie; although they may require some skill in interpreting them correctly.
  • Seek further advice, information and coaching or counseling as required.  This includes assistance to extend the range of your options if you have only come up with a few possibilities.  If you are stuck in your emotions, find someone who can help you in this regard so that you can move forward with a clear mind.

Remember, successful people seek help

when it is required.

Seeking help is not a sign of weakness;

it is a sign of wiseness.

  • Make an informed decision. TRUST your decision will work out for you and proceed with confidence. Things are more likely to work out for you the first time round having following a well thought out plan as described above.

Keep in mind, if things don’t quite work out as expected you will have the benefit of the learning and growth that comes from that.  Seeing things from this perspective allows you to have a positive result regardless of the outcome. Unexpected things can and do happen.  We can’t eliminate these from our life or predict the outcome 100%; however, by following these ideas we can minimize the risk of a poor decision in these situations.  Remember, too, there is always help available.  All we need do is ask for it.

 

Lynda Moe is a Business Strategist,  Process Based Facilitator, Executive & Leadership Coach & Motivational Speaker who is passionate about collaboratively creating high performing and resilient individuals, teams and organizations. She helps her clients to solve problems, shift mindsets, enhance their performance, resiliency and agility (change, thinking, communication & leadership) in order for them to unleash their positive potential. Contact her here or email lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com if you would like to request a complementary no-obligation meeting with Lynda to discuss your business, team, coaching or facilitation requirements or for her to speak at your next event.


 

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Your Words – They Have Influence, Impact & Power

Words - Power-Impact_Influence-v3

Have you ever wondered how much you are impacting others with your words (or your thoughts)?

Would you like to positively heighten the influence you have on others?

If so, you might like to consider this…

The video below is based on the rice experiment which was made famous by Dr. Masaru Emoto, a researcher and alternative healer from Japan. It demonstrates the power of our thinking and our words. Dr Emoto placed portions of cooked rice into two containers. On one container he wrote “thank you” and on the other “you fool”. He then instructed school children to say the labels on the jars out loud every day when they passed them by. After 30 days, the rice in one of those containers looked very different. Another person hearing of Dr Emoto’s research decided to check it out for himself. The video below clearly shows his results. As they say, a picture says a 1000 words. I invite readers to have a look….and a think. Your comments below are also welcome.

If words can have this much impact on cooked rice, what’s their impact on other people?

Base image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

*****

As a Positive Change Facilitator, Organizational Development Specialist, Executive Coach and Speaker I help organizations, teams and individuals at all levels to enhance their performance and to become increasingly resilient, agile and mindful. I enjoy inspiring and engaging my audiences through thought-provoking conversations, facilitated processes and speaking engagements that are specifically designed to assist participants to unleash their positive potential and to move forward in ways they never thought possible. I invite you to connect with me via skype (soar_to_success), follow me on Linkedin or email me at lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com

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MIND TRAINING

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Mind training in the form of podcasts (audio files) is an integral part of many of our programs and coaching that we offer at Lynda Moe Transformations. The particular podcasts we recommend are specifically designed to empower listeners to change the way they think, lead and communicate, the way they live their lives and the way they do business. The podcasts incorporate cutting edge guidance, knowledge and positive therapeutic techniques. They are in mp3 format, allowing them to be downloaded and copied to an iPod or mp3 playing device including Windows Media Player and iTunes.

All of the therapeutic podcasts are in the spoken word and many are combined with music to aid left analytical and right gestalt hemispheric brain integration. The music and the presentation of the wording have been especially designed to break old negative mind sets and life patterns, bringing about positive results for the person. They supplement and support the person to make the on-going changes they wish to focus on and they enhance positioning for success.

Using these podcasts with consistency and with continuity has better results than irregular or intermittent use. That is, the more a person actively participates in the therapeutic podcasts, the more likely they are to achieve positive results within, by empowering themselves to make a change. This provides excellent ‘value for money’ personal development for users.

I have used these podcasts consistently for more than five years now and can vouch that the results achieved are remarkable and on-going. For that reason, I continue to incorporate them as part of my own personal development program.

Some of the results I have experienced to date include:

  • Significant increases in productivity resulting from better time management and  greater focus of effort as well as increased energy levels;
  • Being able to see a wider range of alternatives and differing perspectives in situations. Not only has this been beneficial in the decision making / problem solving process but it also plays out with an extended sense of humor;
  • A far greater ability to manage my emotions in challenging stressful situations which ensures a clearer head and better results in seeking win-win outcomes.
  • Aced a Critical Thinking Appraisal (Watson-Glaser) I was required to take for a Human Resource Consulting contract I was seeking (98th percentile for HR Professionals norm group; Critical Thinking subscales ranged from 88% to 100%). I’ve never done that well before!
  • Often finding myself in the right place at the right time making the right decision;
  • Less downtime due to ill health. I don’t usually have sick days but I did have a predisposition to respiratory infection and when that played out, I could be unwell for up to six weeks. Rarely am I unwell these days and if I feel something brewing, I immediately ‘nip it in the bud’ by using the appropriate podcast and “voila” it disappears;
  • A significant change in eating habits to ones that are far healthier;
  • Far greater consistency in exercising on a regular basis;
  • A very high level of resilience in challenging situations.

I could go on!

As I said, the results have been remarkable. I know this is true for many others using mind training too. It definitely works!

If you could increase your performance or the performance of every one of your employees by 10%, what would that be like? Imagine the possibilities!

Lynda Moe is a Business Strategist,  Process Based Facilitator, Executive & Leadership Coach & Motivational Speaker who is passionate about collaboratively creating high performing and resilient individuals, teams and organizations. She helps her clients to solve problems, shift mindsets, enhance their performance, resiliency and agility (change, thinking, communication & leadership) in order for them to unleash their positive potential. Contact her here or email lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com if you would like to request a complementary no-obligation meeting with Lynda to discuss your business, team, coaching or facilitation requirements or for her to speak at your next event.

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Evernote is a great app!

Evernote is a great app!  It’s a very diverse tool for capturing, managing and finding information easily.

  1. You can capture information in a variety of formats. Add voice notes, image notes, handwritten notes, text notes, web clips, photos, PDFs or audio files and organise them as you like. Eliminate all your “post-its” or small bits of paper with notes on them. Use as a Bookmark Manager: Tag the info, Edit the info, Search the info, Send the info. Great for backing up files too.
  2. You can attach files. As well as writing your notes, you can copy and paste files directly into Evernote. If it’s a PDF, Evernote will display the first page and provide a mini navigation bar to allow you to scroll through the PDF while you’re in the note. If you have the premium version you will be able to search PDFs too.
  3. You can email photos and files. You can email notes directly from Evernote, and have future replies routed directly to your normal email address. You can also email notes directly to Evernote. By adding hashtags in the subject line they will automatically be filed into the right category.
  4. You can view files on all your devices. There are Evernote versions for the Web, Windows, Mac, iPhone, Windows Mobile, and even a portable version to go on a thumb drive and all can be instantaneously synced. This means that all your devices can store and retrieve all of your information from your one account making it assessable wherever you are and with whatever hardware you are using. Great for organising your price lists, to do lists, to go lists, client lists or any kind of list you like. It’s also great as a GTD (Getting Things Done) system.
  5. You can categorise.  By using “notebooks” you can store all your notes in self-selected categories. You can also create folders within these notebooks. This allows for greater organisation of your information. On the other hand, you don’t have to organise your notes at all. You can rely totally on tags and the search tool. Use it to capture and categorise business card and client account or product info.
  6. You can save part of or a whole web page. You can select and copy parts of a webpage you are viewing in your internet browser or the whole webpage and save it as a note. Pictures, diagrams and links are maintained; 90-95% of the formatting is also retained. Take a picture on your cell phone, ipad, camera or other device and send or upload it to evernote. Evernote displays them in an easy view style and through its recognition technology is able to recognise text in your images. You can organise and tag your photos, share them with friends, and have them accessible from anywhere. If you need to back up your invoices with a receipt you can photograph and upload it into Evernote. Sending a receipt digitally is just so much easier than mailing it in!
  7. You can work anywhere online and offline. You can use Evernote offline to view, edit or delete your notes or add new notes. Any additions, deletions or changes are synchronised the moment you connect back to the Internet.
  8. You can merge notes. This is great for organising but also for easy printing and emailing.  All you do is select the notes you want to merge and create one note from them.
  9. You can incorporate visuals. Evernote has the built in capability to take webcam photos from your computer or you can incorporate photos filed on your computer. It also has basic drawing functionality allowing you to sketch out ideas or diagrams and save them like a normal note. E.g. If you are a trainer, presenter, writer or student you might add your notes and create  your handouts in Evernote where you can organise them, tag them, edit them, and view them any time you want. You can search easily through your notes to find things. You can take pictures of whiteboards, diagrams, drawings and store them. It’s great when you need to research and collect info on a topic for a presentation or if you want to photograph a visual created in a workshop and send it out to participants afterwards.
  10. You can collaborate with multiple users. Evernote lets you share some or all of your Evernote folders (“notebooks”) with other Evernote users. If you are a Premium subscriber you can also alter notes across other people’s Evernote accounts (if they give you permission to do so). It’s a great tool for collaborating on projects or for capturing ideas from an online brainstorm session.
  11. You can increase functionality with Plugins. Freelance developers are encouraged to create plugins that can be added to Evernote allowing you to further customise Evernote to meet your requirements. Some are free to download; others cost. You can browse Evernote plugins in the Evernote Trunk .
  12. And it’s free! Yes, Evernote is a free application. You can upgrade to a premium subscription giving you greater functionality, capacity, compatibility and utility; however, the free version is also jam packed with functionality.

You can download Evernote by clicking here.

Lynda Moe is a Business Strategist,  Process Based Facilitator, Executive & Leadership Coach & Motivational Speaker who is passionate about collaboratively creating high performing and resilient individuals, teams and organizations. She helps her clients to solve problems, shift mindsets, enhance their performance, resiliency and agility (change, thinking, communication & leadership) in order for them to unleash their positive potential. Contact her here or email lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com if you would like to request a complementary no-obligation meeting with Lynda to discuss your business, team, coaching or facilitation requirements or for her to speak at your next event.

 

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Your Values

Your values are “what is important” to you now; therefore, your values change over time as your priorities change. When you honour your values on a regular and consistent basis, your life is more meaningful and fulfilling.  When you don’t honour your values you may find your life is out of balance and more stressful; hence, it is wise to make decisions based on your values.  It is also important to clarify, update and re-rank your values over time.

Knowing your values helps you to:

  • Make choices that are right for you;
  • Decide on appropriate actions;
  • Recognise situations where there is a values clash resulting in stress and conflict;
  • Have a clear sense of direction.

Below is a sample worksheet which you can copy to design a worksheet to list your current top 10 values on. Ask yourself, “What is important to me in my life right now?” There is no right or wrong answer to this question. Don’t worry about the ranking initially; just list them in any order to begin with. Different words will have different meanings to each of us. You are the one who determines the meaning for you. Some of you may find it helpful to use several words together to form a chain of thought describing the value. Place the most significant word at the beginning, such as “Integrity” and “Happy” in the examples below:

  • Integrity/Honesty/Walk-the-Talk
  • Integrity/Whole/Congruent
  • Happy/Empowered/Growing
  • Happy/ Fit /Nurtured

Clarifying your values may take time to complete. They are not always easy to finalise on-the-spot. So take your best guess for today, and if you like, come back to this exercise at a later time to fine tune your list and to determine your priority rankings.

Once you have listed your values, take your best estimate as to your current level of satisfaction in living each value you have identified [10 = highest level of satisfaction; 1 = no satisfaction]. As a reminder, you might like to put your list of values on your fridge or another place where they can be viewed regularly.  Next time you have a critical decision to make be sure to take your values into account.

Lynda Moe is a Business Strategist,  Process Based Facilitator, Executive & Leadership Coach & Motivational Speaker who is passionate about collaboratively creating high performing and resilient individuals, teams and organizations. She helps her clients to solve problems, shift mindsets, enhance their performance, resiliency and agility (change, thinking, communication & leadership) in order for them to unleash their positive potential. Contact her here or email lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com if you would like to request a complementary no-obligation meeting with Lynda to discuss your business, team, coaching or facilitation requirements or for her to speak at your next event.


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Are You On Target to Achieve Your Goals?

It’s mid year & a good time to review how you are going in bringing into fruition the goals set at the beginning of the year. Do you need to redirect your energies, put in more effort, work smarter or give yourself a pat on the back? Or do you need to set some new goals… SMARTER GOALS?

If you haven’t set any goals for the year or need to revamp some of your previously set goals make sure they are SMARTER GOALS:

S_ SPECIFIC- Clear expected outcomes that are realistic.

M_MEASURABLE – Clear measures & indicators; evidence of success.

A_ACTION BASED – Action = Results.

R_RELEVANT – Creating value for you +/or your organization.

T_TIME BOUND – Reached in a defined time span.

E_ENGAGING – committed to emotionally; motivating & challenging.

R_RESOURCED – with time, effort, required information, training, money, coaching & support.

SUCCESS TIPS:

* Set a maximum of 3 goals to work on at any one time. This allows better results due to greater FOCUS.

* Stepping stones are important. Succeeding step by step builds confidence.

* Acknowledge your successes even if they are small. Success breeds more success.

* Don’t just wish for it; work for it. Bringing your dreams into reality requires focused effort.

* Persevere. Don’t give up. Many dreams fail to materialize simply because a person gives up too soon.

* Be wise. If you need assistance, seek it. Successful people don’t usually do it all by themselves. When they run into an obstacle they get the help they need to move past that obstacle.

* Celebrate your successes. This is a great way to acknowledge yourself and your results. It will also build your self esteem and confidence.

 

Lynda Moe is a Business Strategist,  Process Based Facilitator, Executive & Leadership Coach & Motivational Speaker who is passionate about collaboratively creating high performing and resilient individuals, teams and organizations. She helps her clients to solve problems, shift mindsets, enhance their performance, resiliency and agility (change, thinking, communication & leadership) in order for them to unleash their positive potential. Contact her here or email lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com if you would like to request a complementary no-obligation meeting with Lynda to discuss your business, team, coaching or facilitation requirements or for her to speak at your next event.

 

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10 Tips to Help You Retain Your Job.

There are no guarantees in this economic environment; however, the way you behave at work can make a difference in whether or not you are retained or redeployed during a restructure.  Make sure you are putting your best foot forward!

1. Be Positive. Remember positive thoughts lead to positive action.  Find the golden nugget in every situation and keep your focus on the positive.

2. Take Initiative. Step up to help when a volunteer is required. Be especially keen to volunteer for a project or task where you will have the opportunity to extend yourself and learn new skills.

3.  Be Solution Focused. When confronted with a problem work it through to a potential solution so that you are able to make a recommendation to your boss.  Not only will this demonstrate your ability to think things through but also shows that you aren’t just expecting your boss to solve the problem for you.

4.  Be Efficient. Practice doing routine tasks quickly.  Create templates for the things you do regularly, for example, monthly reports.  This will save you time and energy.  Get organised and stay organised.

5.  Timekeeping Is Important. Demonstrate good time management skills by meeting your deadlines, keeping breaks to allocated times and being to work on time.

6.  Maintain Your Integrity. Only use sick time if you are actually sick.  Minimise personal phone calls, emails and internet browsing to the essentials.  Be honest even when others are not.

7. Eliminate Gossip and Excessive Chit Chat. Do this on your own time rather than your employer’s time.

8. Communicate Wisely. Regularly update your boss and keep them informed regarding your work and projects.  Keep to the point and minimise conversational communication.

9.  Take Care of Your Health. Ensure you have good coping strategies to handle life’s challenges, ongoing change and stress. Increase your resilience physically, emotionally and mentally.

10.  Be Loyal. Talking negatively about your boss, colleagues or the company you work for can get you fired.  This includes written comments on social media sites such as facebook and twitter as well as in your work emails which can be accessed by your boss.

 

Lynda Moe is a Business Strategist,  Process Based Facilitator, Executive & Leadership Coach & Motivational Speaker who is passionate about collaboratively creating high performing and resilient individuals, teams and organizations. She helps her clients to solve problems, shift mindsets, enhance their performance, resiliency and agility (change, thinking, communication & leadership) in order for them to unleash their positive potential. Contact her here or email lynda@lyndamoetransformations.com if you would like to request a complementary no-obligation meeting with Lynda to discuss your business, team, coaching or facilitation requirements or for her to speak at your next event.

 

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