Relevant Leadership Blog

Stories Make Everything Better

On Monday, I sat in an Irrigation Company Board meeting in Idaho for shareholders who own water rights. We bought a cabin/ranch property last year and with it bought water rights on the canal that runs through our property. The shareholders in the room were primarily farmers and ranch owners – this is a gruff bunch. The President of the Board started the meeting with a funny little story that poked fun at farmers and made everyone laugh and my thought automatically was – Stories make everything better Storytelling a skill that can enhance virtually every situation.   Last week

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Here’s An Answer You Probably Don’t Want To Hear

  A couple of days ago I had a conversation with a speaker who said “I’m really good on stage, but I’m not getting booked for speeches as much as I would like to, do you have any suggestions?”   My answer is one that he probably didn’t want to hear, but it’s the truth. I said “Your problem is one of two things. Either 1 – you’re not as good as you think you are on the stage or 2 – you’re not marketing yourself the way you need to or as effectively as you need to.”   That

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5 Powerfully Simple Presentation Tips

I get asked for presentation advice all the time, so here are five tips that will help make your presentations more engaging & effective.   Get Rid of Pleasantries – There is no need to talk about the weather, how grateful you are to be there, to apologize, or reintroduce yourself. You only have a few seconds to grab their attention so start with a question or jump into your content. Make it Conversational – Act like you are speaking to one person. Make it conversational. Ask questions. If it is a small group you might create dialogue, with a

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5 Powerfully Simple Presentation Tips

1. Get Rid of Pleasantries – There is no need to talk about the weather, how grateful you are to be there, to apologize, or reintroduce yourself. You only have a few seconds to grab their attention so start with a question or jump into your content. 2. Make it Conversational – Act like you are speaking to one person. Make it conversational. Ask questions. If it is a small group you might create dialogue, with a large audience ask questions and give a pause for people to think about the question. Keep them engaged in the conversation. 3. Tell

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If You Use PowerPoint – Read This

Last week at one of the events I keynoted the speaker before me used 65 blank white slides with bullet point paragraphs in black font that he read word for word from screen! – Seriously painful. So to make sure that doesn’t happen anymore – here are 18 tips for anyone who uses PowerPoint to present: (I have to give credit to Ruby Newell-Legner for many of the tips below)   Finish your presentation before starting to work on your Power Point slides Remember – PowerPoint is NOT your Presentation. It is a visual support to your message Use a

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Balancing Credibilty and Relatability

This is a quick excerpt from my program – Facts Tell Stories Sell that explains a delicate balance every great communicator must create. The balance between credibility and relatability. – Enjoy. To Watch CLICK HERE

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The Basics of A Great Speech

I received an email from a student who was in one of my audiences who asked if i could give her advice on putting a speech together – so here you go. The Basics of A Great Speech They say that people fear speaking more than they fear death. I think the reason is because you are still alive after you give a horrible speech ☺ The truth is that most people don’t know how to organize and prepare a great speech – so I wanted to share with you some of the basics of a great speech. Every speech

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The Goal is Connection, Not Perfection

When it comes to communication, whether you are speaking to a large audience, selling to an individual, teaching a class or having a conversation with your spouse, I believe that most of us aim at the wrong target. When you read any book on communication, or if you ask anyone what their goal is for their presentation – they will talk about making it perfect. They want you to have the right opening, structure the presentation correctly, back up every point, make it engaging, and close in a memorable way. I agree with all of those concepts (in fact I

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What Country Music Taught Me About Public Speaking

When I was 16 years old, I had a girlfriend who slowly but surely converted me to country music. It started with Garth Brooks’ Standing Outside The Fire. – (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jh499tJV_sY) Then it was Tim McGraw, Toby Keith and pretty soon I was hooked. Country music songs are great because they have much more of a story to them than most other genres of music. (I know what the haters are thinking – “my dog died, my wife left me, etc…) And within the stories of country music songs there is an incredible lesson for anyone who speaks to groups or

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