​PowerSpeaking Blog: Tips and strategies for crafting presentations

Guest Interview: 7 Gestures for Better Speaking

PowerSpeaking, Inc. coach, author, and presenter Rachel Rodriguez returns to share her insights after many years of experience. Effective speakers convey a genuine presence and use gestures to support their message. Read on for insider information on how to speak with compelling gestures to any audience. 

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Be Heard at Work: Eight Reasons to Speak Assertively

Learning to communicate effectively is a skill for anyone looking for success in the workplace. Being an assertive speaker is a core component of being an effective communicator with authentic presence - but it’s not always easy to do. Read on and learn eight reasons why assertive communication will help you be heard, be more productive, and be happier at work.

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4 Reasons Public Speaking is Critical for Successful Business

Imagine it. You’re walking across a large empty stage, steps echoing, toward a brightly lit lectern with microphone at the ready. Palms sweating yet? You’re not alone! Public speaking, for many, represents a roadblock to their careers—and it doesn’t have to be that way. For entrepreneurs, this is the most critical tool needed to develop for a successful career track. Finding the confidence and ease to communicate with others can become a personal strength if you develop it.

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4 Ways to Be Your Own Best Leader

Leadership is more than a position or title. It is a combination of behaviors, skills, and a mindset with a sense of responsibility for the company cause. To become an effective leader you must be an authentic communicator with a clear vision for the brand and its future. 

Being a transformational leader is no different, and is a skill that can be honed with dedication. 

What technical attributes do you bring to the workplace?  How do you improve your interpersonal skills?  From managing others to communicating with senior executives, leadership skills are dynamic and can be learned. Add these 4 simple strategies into your daily routine for an effective way to lead. 

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Tough Questions: Tips for Dealing with Difficult Audiences

If you are feeling apprehensive about public speaking or presenting, typically at the root of the anxiety is fear of embarrassing yourself. With careful preparation and focus on delivery, it can be easy to avoid embarrassment in a monologue style presentation. But what about when you open up the floor for questions and comments?

Audiences can be tricky: Even if they're your peers, co-workers, or experts in a certain field, everyone has their own agenda and emotional logic. By giving a presentation and soliciting feedback, you are inviting a variety of different personalities to listen and comment on your work. Audience member responses can range from boredom to outright hostility for reasons that may be unclear to you. To conquer a difficult audience, follow these tips:

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Techniques from the Stage: Actors' Advice to Presenters

"All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players."

 It's one of Shakespeare's most well-known lines, taken from the play As You Like It. While many may or may not have seen the play itself, the words have taken on a life of their own owing to the core truth buried in them: In our everyday lives, we take on roles and put on performances for our peers while trying to make ourselves understood.

Nowhere is this a more apt metaphor than when giving a presentation. You may not be an "actor," but many of the techniques that actors use to convey emotion and captivate audiences can be used to make executive and technical presentations more compelling. Here are few proven acting techniques that can enhance your next presentation:

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Hook, Line, and Sinker: Grabbing Audience Attention with a Great Opening

One of the things that can trip up some subject matter experts who are tasked to make a presentation is their opening. Often it is the first 30 seconds to a minute that sets the tone for the remainder of your presentation — grabbing audience attention and holding it.

Your opening, whether it's a single sentence or a few lines, is where a presentation can be made or broken. It's your chance to hook them, tickling their curiosity so that you can slowly reel them in throughout the rest of your presentation. So how do you captivate an audience with your opening? Follow these tips for creating a great opening.

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Make 'em Laugh: The Use of Humor in Successful Public Speaking

Successful public speaking − whether it's a business presentation, a conference keynote or a toast at a wedding − is all about creating that resonance with your audience, that emotional spark that gets them on board with your words. To this end, there is no greater tool in your arsenal than the judicious and skillful use of humor.

When we laugh, there are no barriers between speaker and audience − not skepticism or cynicism. If someone has made you laugh, chances are you are more open to the speaker and the authority of their words. Yet just because humor is a powerful tool doesn't mean that everyone can wield it proficiently. I'm sure everyone has silently suffered through conferences where a presenter attempted to make a joke, only to elicit groans from the audience.

To make the most of humor in your next presentation, follow these tips for public speaking. 

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