Choose the Proper Elements of Style for Your Presentations

The first presentation by me I’ll always remember. You would never use the passive tense to say, “I’ll always remember my first presentation.” Would you?

Yet speakers too often use passive tenses in their presentationsUse proper grammar in your presentations As Strunk and White state in their classic The Elements of Style: “Avoid tame, colorless, hesitating, noncommittal language.”

This gem of a book has guided writers for more than 50 years. In 2011, Time Magazine listed it among The Best 100 Non-Fiction Books ever written. We urge everyone who values simple writing to read it. …Read more…

How to Make a Presentation When the Equipment Fails !%!!#!


Remember that sick feeling you had as a kid when the teacher said, “Be prepared for a test tomorrow.” You hadn’t even opened the textbook yet!

That’s how it feels when you’re about to make a presentation and your laptop freezes or something equally awful happens.

Be Prepared

When you’re scheduled to present, be prepared. You don’t want to experience that sick feeling again when something goes wrong. Make a checklist of what you need to be at your best.

Being prepared saved the day recently …Read more…

Visualize Yourself Going for the Gold in Your Next Presentation

In a post-Olympics story, The New York Times wrote about how elite athletes visualize a successful performance.

Visualizing in Action

Visualizing in Action

They see themselves navigating the turns in a downhill race, and mentally visualize the course over and over. Skiers and skaters plan every jump, turn and landing.

As one Olympian said, “You have to smell it. You have to hear it. You have to feel it, everything.” The visualization even extends to how they would handle themselves in a news conference to …Read more…

Working the Stage and Staying “In the Moment” During a Presentation

Working the stage

Working the stage

Every presentation is also a performance. Like an actor you need to know your lines and stay “in the moment,” always in character and focusing on what you’re doing when you’re doing it.

Actors are trained to stay in the moment and not think about what they’re having for dinner after the show or lose their concentration if a cell phone goes off in the audience.

Staying in the moment – or mindfulness – is a skill that is getting a lot of attention these days as our busy lives and the Internet intrude on our ability to focus, as The New York Times recently reported. …Read more…