Take This Joke. Please.

22nd February, 2010 - Posted by janebeard

We’ve met countless speakers who believe that telling a joke is a great way to break the ice with an audience. It doesn’t. All it does is break our hope that your presentation will be different from the others we’ve sat through. For every time it’s worked to start with a joke, there are thousands […] Read More

Why You Should Know TED

17th February, 2010 - Posted by janebeard

TED is a terrific series of conferences on “Big Idea” topics related to Technology, Entertainment and Design (hence, TED). They invite speakers from around the world to come talk about “ideas worth spreading.” And in twenty minutes or less, the audience gets to learn what they’re creating and why. After the conference, TED posts the […] Read More

Say What You Mean Part 2

8th February, 2010 - Posted by jeffdavis

Somewhere in the mid-1990’s, business speakers began to get smart about spin. That’s when “problems “were transformed into “opportunities,” and “near disasters” became, “challenges.” There is something to be said for the detached, objective description of a situation. For example, flight attendants tell us, “In the event of a sudden loss of cabin pressure, oxygen […] Read More

Say What You Mean Part 1

3rd February, 2010 - Posted by jeffdavis

There are a few phrases business speakers use that are meant to convey one meaning, but actually convey another. “We are well-positioned to…” is one of those phrases. It sounds so mature and business-like, doesn’t it? Maybe that’s why so many speakers reach for it. When we hear speakers say, “We’re well-positioned to…” we hear […] Read More