10 Reasons You’ll Improve Your Next Presentation By Using The ‘B’ Key

Business Insider interviewed me last week on the best way to avoid ‘death by PowerPoint’ and improve public speaking and presentation skills. I talked about the simplest and most powerful technique – the ‘B’ key. Otherwise known as blanking the screen during a slide show. They published the piece on Friday as ’10 Reasons You’ll More…

How to make a ‘save’. Update on Michael Bay meltdown

Wow. I’ve had a lot of questions on Michael Bay’s public speaking meltdown at CES and the article I wrote about it. It’s painful to watch because many of us have either had public-speaking-anxiety-driven experience – or worried about one. So I thought we’d focus on how to make a ‘Save’ when there is a More…

How to avoid a Michael Bay presentation meltdown

Michael Bay, one of hollywood’s hottest directors (eg: Transformers movies) and worth $400 million, had a public speaking meltdown yesterday and abruptly walked off stage mid presentation. It started with Bay joining Joe Stinziano, Executive VP of Samsung, on stage at CES (Consumer Electronics Show). After a minute or so, he lost his place, panicked and More…

Great speeches – David Morrison ‘The standard you walk past…’

The leadership message is clear in this David Morrison speech. “The standard you walk past is the standard you accept.” “If that does not suit you then get out.” It’s recognised as one of the great speeches of recent years. In the midst of another sex scandal, around a “Jedi Council” internet sex ring, the leadership speech More…

Kevin Rudd ‘caught’ shuffling speaker notes in debate – how important are notes?

Sunday night was the first Election debate with Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott. There’s plenty of commentary on who won and why. My view is below. However, I thought I’d use this opportunity to address a side story: Kevin Rudd’s use of speaker notes. The first headline I saw on Monday morning was: CAUGHT RUDD More…

Great speeches in Kevin Rudd’s leadership challenge

Public speaking is your core opportunity to demonstrate leadership qualities. There were some great speeches in the recent leadership challenge, and some not so great speeches. Overall, they tell a fascinating story. They explain a lot about leadership communication and public speaking. I’m not going to address who’s right or wrong, who lied or betrayed, etc. More…

How to use PowerPoint to Force Attention

Have you ever seen a bad PowerPoint presentation? (Have you ever made one?!) Think about how you use PowerPoint. It can be used to engage, to annoy, to inform or put people to sleep. Many argue that to use PowerPoint itself is bad and should be avoided. But if there is a problem with a PowerPoint More…

Prezi versus PowerPoint for presentation visuals

Have you heard of Prezi? Sometimes called the ‘zooming’ presentation software, Prezi is an online program you can use to create presentations that are considered more dynamic than PowerPoint because of its Zooming User Interface. What does that mean? The presentation or story is laid out on a virtual canvas and the scale of the viewed area More…

The Power of the Pause in public speaking

I paused to speak with a friend this week, a legend in radio, who shared with me what Graham Kennedy believed was his secret to success in connecting with an audience. The pause. Now, some of you will be asking; ‘Who the hell is Graham Kennedy? He was a pioneer – an award-winning entertainer, movie More…

My chat with Bill Clinton about Public Speaking

Bill Clinton talked about public speaking mistakes Al Gore made during the 2000 election when I spoke to him at the Global Business Forum in Feb 2006. Victorian Premier Steve Bracks introduced him as the World’s Greatest Communicator, and his speech on the day was compelling, but I was more interested in asking him questions about speaking style. In particular, More…