Archive for the Presenting Category

Why don’t people listen today?

Posted in Balance, Customer service, Leadership, Management, Organize, Planning, Presenting, Self-management, Stress, Teamwork, Time management, Time management/Self-management on November 29, 2014 by Chuc Barnes

Listening

Can you remember when your mother spoke to you and said, “Listen to me.” Perhaps your mother even said, “Look at me when I’m talking to you.”

Your mom was not just teaching you a skill to use with her. She was teaching you a crucial skill to help you save time when dealing with other people too.

Karen Anderson is a friend of mine and a mom. She also is a teacher, speaker, and consultant. Karen constantly tells her students and clients that “good leaders LISTEN.”

I agree with Karen–and I agree with your mom. Good leaders listen!

Simply try to imagine how can you effectively lead a group in a meeting or any endeavor if you’re not listening to them and paying attention, not just to their words, but also to their body language?

As a former Marine, I can tell you first hand that a good leader, whether in battle or not, is constantly watching his or her team in order to “listen” to what’s going on. And when in battle, leaders and team members use signals so they can communicate without the enemy knowing what you’re saying.

This also is true in sports. When playing basketball or baseball, isn’t it true that players on a team receive messages from their coach from signals (a method of communicating and LISTENING) in the middle of a game?

OK, forget battle and sports for a moment. Think about yourself. Are you a good listener? Do you pay attention to what other people are thinking and saying?

Do you listen to what your customers are saying?

What about your friends? Do you actually listen to them?

And what about today’s politicians. Do they listen? If so, why do they have such low favorability ratings?

Realize that young people “listen” differently than you do. They communicate with friends by sending messages on Facebook, Twitter and other social media. (Text messages are enormously popular.) They therefore “listen” to words and they look at photos and videos. Thus, they don’t use much body language.

I’m writing this post right now to remind you, as the leader and self-manager that you are, that LISTENING is a crucial skill — a time-saving skill that too many people are overlooking today.

Do you agree with what I’m saying about listening being a time-saver? If you do, great! If you don’t, that’s OK. Either way, I’d like to “listen” to your opinion so please jot your comments here.

Make minutes count in your presentations. Here are two suggestions:

Posted in Leadership, Management, Planning, Presenting, Time management, Time management/Self-management on April 22, 2013 by Chuc Barnes

Speaker

1. Use stories and examples.

Stories are powerful. Think about the way a child listens with open eyes when you tell a story. The child becomes emotionally involved and pays close attention because he or she wants to know what’s going to happen next. You want the same thing to happen to your listeners, no matter whether they are adults or children.

Realizing this, make sure your entire presentation unfolds like a story. When you do this, you stir up interest for your audience — just like interest gets stirred up for a child. It makes your listeners want to keep listening to what you are saying.

2. Be certain the stories you use have messages or points that link to the ideas you talk about in your presentation.

Telling a story simply for the sake of telling a story detracts from your presentation. Be sure the stories you tell illustrate the points you deliver in your presentation.

For example, if you want to make the point that planning is important, you tell the story of Jack and Jill going up the hill to fetch a pail of water. Following the story, you might say, “Jack and Jill came tumbling down because they were unprepared. We want to prevent that from happening to us by preparing carefully for this project.”

Notice that I just used an example and a story in the above paragraph to encourage you to stay involved and pay attention to the point I’m making.

Many people say, “I can’t tell a story in my presentation because my listeners are business people. They want logic.” I say, “Stories create a sense of involvement for your listeners.”Stories create “movies in the mind” and connect logically and emotionally. Stories also make you — and the points you describe — unique.

Other people say, “Heck, Chuc, I can’t think of a story.” I say, “It’s a good idea to jot down stories when you see them on the job or in your personal life.”

Think with me for a moment. Maybe you see something funny happen at the airport, for example. Write it down. Now suppose something unusual or dramatic happens to you on the job or in your family, write it down.

Notice how I just used another example to keep you involved and deliver the point I’m making.

Professional speakers know that stories are difficult to remember when they are under pressure to create a new presentation, so they keep notebooks of stories. Whenever they see something funny or clever, they write the details in their notebook. Then, when they prepare a new presentation, they check their notebook for a story that helps them convey the point they want to make.

It’s a lot easier to come up with a “perfect” story for your presentation when you can choose from several in your notebook, rather than have to think of a story from scratch when you’re hurrying to create a presentation.

Now think of a presentation you have made to someone sometime in your life. Maybe it was something you told your family. What happened, good or bad? You now have another story. Write it down. Who knows? That story might help you illustrate a point in your next presentation. Then keep watching for stories you can use in your presentations.

In summary, be sure you keep your listeners involved in your presentations by using stories and examples. This will help you make the minutes count in your presentations.

If you want more suggestions, you’ll find 76 tips in my book, “Capture the Moment.”

Why don’t people listen today?

Posted in Customer service, Leadership, Management, Presenting, Self-management, Teamwork, Time management, Time management/Self-management on May 8, 2012 by Chuc Barnes

Can you remember when your mother spoke to you and said, “Listen to me.” Perhaps your mother even said, “Look at me when I’m talking to you.”

Your mom was not just teaching you a skill to use with her. She was teaching you a crucial skill to help you save time when dealing with other people too.

Karen Anderson is a friend of mine and a mom. She also is a teacher, speaker, and consultant. Karen constantly tells her students and clients that “good leaders LISTEN.”

I agree with Karen–and I agree with your mom. Good leaders listen!

Simply try to imagine how can you effectively lead a group in a meeting or any endeavor if you’re not listening to them and paying attention, not just to their words, but also to their body language?

As a former Marine, I can tell you first hand that a good leader, whether in battle or not, is constantly watching his or her team in order to “listen” to what’s going on. And when in battle, leaders and team members use signals so they can communicate without the enemy knowing what you’re saying.

This also is true in sports. When playing basketball or baseball, isn’t it true that players on a team receive messages from their coach from signals (a method of communicating and LISTENING) in the middle of a game?

OK, forget battle and sports for a moment. Think about yourself. Are you a good listener? Do you pay attention to what other people are thinking and saying?

Do you listen to what your customers are saying?

What about your friends? Do you actually listen to them?

And what about today’s politicians. Do they listen? If so, why do they have such low favorability ratings?

Realize that young people “listen” differently than you do. They communicate with friends by sending messages on Facebook, Twitter and other social media. They therefore “listen” to words and they look at photos and videos. Thus, they don’t use much body language.

I’m writing this post right now to remind you, as the leader and self-manager that you are, that LISTENING is a crucial skill — a time-saving skill that too many people are overlooking today.

Just think of all the unsolicited phone calls you receive. What about all the “offers” you keep receiving in unsolicited emails.

Do you agree with what I’m saying about listening being a time-saver? If you do, great! If you don’t, that’s OK. Either way, I’d like to “listen” to your opinion so please jot your comments here.

I’ll write more about listening in future posts.

Want to get your year back on track? Here are 5 steps to help you this week (April 22 thru April 28).

Posted in Leadership, Management, Organize, Planning, Presenting, Self-management, Time management, Time management/Self-management on April 22, 2012 by Chuc Barnes

Nearly 1/4 of the year 2012 is over so:

1) Clarify your vision for the balance of the year (Write it down.)

2) List 3 tasks necessary to reach your vision. (Specify these clearly.)

3) Schedule the three tasks in this week’s plan (Include time required for each.)

4) Make sure any papers you need for the 3 tasks are readily available (Organized, yet not piled in front of you).

5) Proceed with each task, completing them one by one.

These 5 steps will help you move forward towards your dream.

Makes sense, doesn’t it?

Five additional ways to make minutes count when presenting.

Posted in Organize, Planning, Presenting, Self-management, Time management, Time management/Self-management on January 28, 2012 by Chuc Barnes

When presenting to any audience, large or small, it’s important for you to help your listener(s) break through the thoughts that already are running through their heads, so they hear what you say to them.

Suggestion: Use a metaphor, simile, alliteration, allegory, or rhyme to help them “connect” and retain what you say.

A Metaphor is a word or phrase that denotes an object or idea, but is used in place of another object or idea. Examples would be: “All the World’s a stage,” or “A boat without oars trying to get to shore.”

A Simile compares two unlike things and often is introduced by the words like or as.
An example would be: “The piles of paper looked like jagged mountains that no one could ever climb.”

Alliteration is the repetition of initial-consonant sounds in two or more neighboring words or syllables. An example would be: “Reading, Writing, ‘Rithmetic.”

An Allegory is a story, fictional or otherwise, used to portray a truth or express a point. An example would be: “The smallest duckling said he’d rather swim on his own, but the mother duck told all the ducklings that they’d save energy and go much farther if they’d swim in a row.”

A Rhyme can be very effective if it helps solidify a point, For example, “If the glove doesn’t fit, you must acquit.”

The above five suggestions will help you and your message have more impact and influence in your presentations.

If you want more suggestions, you’ll find 76 tips in my book, “Capture the Moment.”

Make the minutes count in your presentations. Here are two suggestions:

Posted in Leadership, Presenting, Self-management, Time management, Time management/Self-management on January 3, 2012 by Chuc Barnes

1. Use stories and examples.

Stories are powerful. Think about the way a child listens with open eyes when you tell a story. The child becomes emotionally involved and pays close attention because he or she wants to know what’s going to happen next. You want the same thing to happen to your listeners, no matter whether they are adults or children.

Realizing this, make sure your entire presentation unfolds like a story. When you do this, you stir up interest for your audience — just like interest gets stirred up for a child. It makes your listeners want to keep listening to what you are saying.

2. Be certain the stories you use have messages or points that link to the ideas you talk about in your presentation.

Telling a story simply for the sake of telling a story detracts from your presentation. Be sure the stories you tell illustrate the points you deliver in your presentation.

For example, if you want to make the point that planning is important, you tell the story of Jack and Jill going up the hill to fetch a pail of water. Following the story, you might say, “Jack and Jill came tumbling down because they were unprepared. We want to prevent that from happening to us by preparing carefully for this project.”

Notice that I just used an example and a story in the above paragraph to encourage you to stay involved and pay attention to the point I’m making.

Many people say, “I can’t tell a story in my presentation because my listeners are business people. They want logic.” I say, “Stories create a sense of involvement for your listeners.”Stories create “movies in the mind” and connect logically and emotionally. Stories also make you — and the points you describe — unique.

Other people say, “Heck, Chuc, I can’t think of a story.” I say, “It’s a good idea to jot down stories when you see them on the job or in your personal life.”

Think with me for a moment. Maybe you see something funny happen at the airport, for example. Write it down. Now suppose something unusual or dramatic happens to you on the job or in your family, write it down.

Notice how I just used another example to keep you involved and deliver the point I’m making.

Professional speakers know that stories are difficult to remember when they are under pressure to create a new presentation, so they keep notebooks of stories. Whenever they see something funny or clever, they write the details in their notebook. Then, when they prepare a new presentation, they check their notebook for a story that helps them convey the point they want to make.

It’s a lot easier to come up with a “perfect” story for your presentation when you can choose from several in your notebook, rather than have to think of a story from scratch when you’re hurrying to create a presentation.

Now think of a presentation you have made to someone sometime in your life. Maybe it was something you told your family. What happened, good or bad? You now have another story. Write it down. Who knows? That story might help you illustrate a point in your next presentation. Then keep watching for stories you can use in your presentations.

In summary, be sure you keep your listeners involved in your presentations by using stories and examples. This will help you make the minutes count in your presentations.

If you want more suggestions, you’ll find 76 tips in my book, “Capture the Moment.”

Are you authentic?

Posted in Planning, Presenting, Self-management, Time management, Time management/Self-management on February 9, 2011 by Chuc Barnes

When my son, Scott, was growing up, he played Little League Baseball (and he was a terrific pitcher and batter). There was a boy on Scott’s team named Norman who always seemed to be caught in tough situations, such as being thrown out when stealing a base or having “strike three” called by the umpire.

Whenever any of these situations occurred, Norman would worry all of the mothers watching the ball game because Norman would fall down in agony or, when thrown out while stealing a base, he’d roll on the ground holding his leg and acting as if he was in physical agony.

Those of us who coached Little League Baseball always smiled because we knew that Norman was a performer. He wasn’t really hurt. He just acted like he was hurt and his performances were very, very believable.

I’m mentioning Norman here because I’ve been discussing movie stars in this blog and movie stars are performers too. In essence, movie stars, just as Charlton Heston wrote in his books and introductions, spend the biggest part of their lives pretending to be other people (the characters they portray).

Isn’t it interesting to see people today who aren’t movie stars — yet just like young Norman and nearly all the Hollywood actors — spend most of their time pretending to be people that they aren’t?

I call this a big time waster.

What about you?

Are you really the person you portray yourself to be? You don’t have to answer me here. You might want to look in the mirror, however, and answer the question for yourself. Here’s why.

Most people think time is money, yet I say that time is life. Thus, if you, or any of the people you see who are spending their time portraying themselves to be something other than who they are, they are wasting more than money, they are wasting their life.

Authenticity is crucial for successful relationships, and I say that authenticity is crucial for a successful life.

Does this make sense? Please leave your comments here.