Delivery

Everyone enjoys a good performance. But if, at the end of a presentation, you can comment only on the quality of the speaker's voice control, visual aids, grooming, etc. - then that speaker has failed. While it is true that a successful delivery requires excellence in each of these and other areas, ultimately what matters most is the transfer of ideas from the speaker to audience. Good speakers know how to use a blend of delievery techniques to enhance, rather than obscure, their message.

Articles in our "Delivery" Category:

Presence And Presenting

By Stephen Boyd | February 5, 2012

Sometimes the message of the speaker is not as important as the speaker. We want to see our CEO speak at our company's year-end meeting and we want to hear our minister or priest present at important religious events. We want our leaders who represent us to show up at town meetings and interviews. Don't allow your technology to substitute for the person. Important messages should be communicated in person.

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Avoiding Public Speaking Gaffes

By Stephen Boyd | November 29, 2011

The word "gaffe" seems to be in print in increasing numbers. When you participate in political campaigns or when any person speaks frequently and is followed by the press, the possibility for gaffes is great. A gaffe is an embarrassing mistake you make in public. Another definition is a blatant mistake or misjudgment, or a social or diplomatic blunder.

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The Perfect Toast

By Stephen Boyd | September 20, 2011

One of the best ways to affirm someone is to propose a toast. We don't need a plaque or certificate to show our love and appreciation for someone - we can do it with words. That is what a toast consists of. A toast is a special way to celebrate an event or date in a person's life with words of affirmation and encouragement.

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Engage Your Audience!

By Stephen Boyd | August 31, 2011

In a recent presentation skills workshop, when I asked the ten people to tell what they wanted from the workshop, I was surprised to hear that over half wanted to learn ways to engage the audience. Bruce Springsteen said it well about engaging the audience - "The life of a rock and roll band will last as long as you look down and can see yourself, and your audience looks up at you and can see themselves."

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Give The Gift Of Grace

By Stephen Boyd | July 6, 2011

When you present, you know that many things can go wrong. When that happens, give grace to the person responsible. Don't be a prima donna and instead go with the flow. Be gracious when circumstances create difficulties in delivering your speech.

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The Sound of Silence

By Stephen Boyd | January 13, 2011

Activity ground to a halt on Monday at 11 am as President Obama led the nation in observing a moment of silence for those slain in Tucson. Silence can accomplish things words cannot. Silence commands respect. A stadium full of people becomes silent as the National Anthem is sung.

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Professional Speaking and Baseball

By Stephen Boyd | October 25, 2010

Many of us have dreamed at some point about being a professional baseball player. My dream was to be another Mickey Mantle. But instead I ended up being a professional speaker. As I was reliving my own professional baseball daydream a few days ago, I remembered the graceful swing and arm strength that the Mick had. Excited about my Cincinnati Reds in the playoffs for the first time in fifteen years, I thought, 'Wait a minute! Maybe I achieved part of my dream after all. I am a professional speaker, and in many ways professional speakers are similar to baseball players.'

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Be Present!

By Stephen Boyd | August 10, 2010

I tell my students that one of the best ways to become a better public speaker in my class is to be present when other students are speaking. You may not have a speech to give yourself, but by coming to class on the days your classmates speak and listening carefully you will learn things to do or not to do in your next speech.

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Make Every Word Count

By Stephen Boyd | July 20, 2010

We live in a society of words - too many words and often words that do not count. 'You know,' 'and everything,' 'stuff,' and 'let me be frank,' are typical. We don't pay close attention because there is so much fluff. So if you want to make people listen, make every word count.

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The Speech Of Response

By Stephen Boyd | May 2, 2010

Sometimes you have to respond publicly to an honor, an action, or an announcement. Often you do not have much time to prepare and your remarks may not be very astute and structured.

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Ask The Right Questions

By Stephen Boyd | February 11, 2010

When you ask the right question, effective communication occurs. Sometimes the right answer comes when you are two or three questions deep in the conversation. Get information before you give information. Don't be afraid to follow up one question with another.

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Effective Communication in 2010

By Stephen Boyd | January 4, 2010

We make New Year's resolutions about our careers, our eating habits, or our exercise. Let's make 2010 resolutions about our communication!

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No Apology Needed!

By Stephen Boyd | December 11, 2009

Don't apologize when delivering a speech unless it is something that keeps an audience from understanding you. Eliminating statements of apology is one of the earliest points you learn when receiving presentations coaching.

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Using Conversation In Your Presentation

By Stephen Boyd | October 8, 2009

When involved in public speaking, you usually think about getting content from your expertise and experiences. Perhaps you Google your topic to see what new information you can find. However, to add the human touch to any presentation, consider including conversation.

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Persuasive Speaking In Down Times

By Stephen Boyd | August 26, 2009

As a speaker, when you have resistance because of a bad place in life, you can't push people into accepting your ideas. Here are some suggestions on how to get the audience on your side when people may be scared about their futures and not concerned about your latest product or idea.

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Avoid Inadvertent Offenses!

By Stephen Boyd | July 15, 2009

You should do what you can not to offend when speaking, whether individually or to a crowd. In most audiences, there is someone just waiting to be offended. Don't make their wait a short one. Here are some suggestions to keep the audience on your side.

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I Have Something To Say!

By Stephen Boyd | April 30, 2009

All of us at some point have had to speak unexpectedly, either on our own volition or because someone thinks we have something to contribute. How can you handle these situations with poise and competence? Here is a formula that will make you look good and sound on top of things.

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How You Say It Counts!

By Stephen Boyd | February 23, 2009

How ideas are presented has a great deal to do with how much value they seem to offer. Delivery in speaking involves everything but the words themselves, including the use of the voice, hands, facial expression, eyes, posture, and space.

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Deliver A Great Speech To Yourself!

By Stephen Boyd | February 2, 2009

The most important words you will ever speak are the words you speak to yourself when you are by yourself. I don't know where I first found that statement, but I think it especially applies to us as speakers before we deliver our speeches.

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Effective Webinar Presentations

By Stephen Boyd | January 21, 2009

In recent months I have been asked by a couple of clients to critique their webinar presentations. After spending time listening and evaluating those and after reading the literature on conducting webinars, here are suggestions for improving your webinar presentations.

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The Holiday Toast

By Stephen Boyd | December 15, 2008

The toast is the perfect way to top off the celebration at a holiday banquet, reception, party, or gift exchange. If you have the opportunity to offer a toast, here are some suggestions.

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Conversation in Presentations

By Stephen Boyd | December 1, 2008

You may think of conversation only in interpersonal communication, not usually in a presentation, but conversation or dialogue in a speech can add much to your presentation.

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Keep Your Presentation Simple

By Stephen Boyd | October 4, 2008

When delivering a presentation, keep things simple. To help the audience remember what you say, focus on one idea for your listeners to take away. As you prepare your speech, keep in mind the one idea you want the audience to remember.

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Give Up The Stage

By Tom Antion | October 3, 2008

If you want a technique that works every single time in just about any speaking situation then you will love this. In virtually every speaking presentation I do, I find some excuse to get someone on stage with me. When an audience member is on stage, the rest of the audience is glued to the action.

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Providing A Sense Of Direction

By Stephen Boyd | September 8, 2008

All of us are somewhat uncomfortable with the unknown. The same is true in listening to a presentation. As audience members, we like to know where the speaker is going and how he or she is getting there. Whatever the type of presentation, the speaker has a responsibility to provide a sense of direction.

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Ten Tips To A Dynamic Presentation

By Stephen Boyd | June 10, 2008

Uneasy about that next presentation? Taking your speech to the next level-possibly even from dull to dynamic-is as simple as incorporating these top ten speaking tips.

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Let The Little Voice Speak

By Stephen Boyd | May 12, 2008

Sometimes a great idea or phrase comes to you unexpectedly, it may seem like a voice from nowhere. If you have this experience, my recommendation is to speak it!

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Speaking To Elicit Emotion

By Stephen Boyd | April 11, 2008

In order for us to motivate people to action, we have to make them feel what we are talking about. People generally will not take action unless there is a feeling involved. We buy on emotion and justify with logic. Here are some suggestions for including emotion in your speaking.

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Speaking To An International Audience

By Stephen Boyd | March 12, 2008

More and more, our audiences include people from other countries. How do we adapt to audiences of people who may not be familiar with our culture? Here are some speaking tips for these kinds of situations.

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Content and Context

By Stephen Boyd | February 25, 2008

What we say in a presentation is vital but as speakers we should be concerned about the surroundings of our actual presentation. We want to prepare the setting as well as the content of the presentation.

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Anticipate Challenges In Presentations

By Stephen Boyd | November 26, 2007

As you prepare for a specific speech, you will sometimes become aware of a situation that could cause challenges. This can create anxiety as you face the uncertainty connected with a possible negative impact on your presentation. I have found that the best way to meet such a challenge is to creatively mention the possible problem in the opening three minutes of your presentation.

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The Potential Power In Presentations

By Stephen Boyd | November 6, 2007

Many people will do anything to avoid delivering a speech. However, if you learn the skills involved there are tremendous values in speaking effectively. Both Lee Iacocca and Jack Welch credit public speaking skills as a major factor in their successes as CEOs of Chrysler and General Electric Here are some of the benefits.

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Recency Equals Relevancy In Speaking

By Stephen Boyd | October 8, 2007

Up-to-date information is instantly relevant to an audience, and as speakers we must work hard to keep such information in our content. Let me suggest some ways to do that.

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The Secret To Speaking Success

By Stephen Boyd | September 5, 2007

The single greatest secret to success in life is paying attention. Because of multi-tasking and the sheer amount of information we are exposed to, the inability to pay attention is becoming a serious problem. To communicate effectively, one must pay attention.

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Name Dropping In Presentations

By Stephen Boyd | August 13, 2007

In speaking, name-dropping can add positive impact. Lets examine how we should drop names in a speech.

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Be Direct!

By Stephen Boyd | July 9, 2007

Whatever we are dealing with, we want the direct way, and that is especially true in speaking. We want to remember the truth behind the familiar admonition not to beat around the bush. In other words, be direct. Let us look at some ways we can be direct in delivering presentations.

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Adapting On The Spot

By Stephen Boyd | June 4, 2007

One of the concerns of the effective speaker during preparation is to adapt to the audience he or she is addressing. But to really make a connection with a specific audience, the quality speaker must also adapt during the presentation. This requires quick thinking and the willingness to go with your intuitive impulse. Here are some tips on how to make those kinds of on-the-spot decisions.

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Keeping Your Speech Material Fresh

By Stephen Boyd | May 21, 2007

If you speak very much, you tend to keep in your speech what works well and what is comfortable for you. However, to continue to be enthusiastic and appear fresh and current, you need to regularly add new material. Here are some ways to keep looking for material that will add depth and relevance to your content.

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Delivering A Manuscript Speech

By Stephen Boyd | May 8, 2007

There is the misconception among some that since the speech is written, you do not have to spend as much time in practicing and that because your speech is in front of you, all you have to do is read it. In fact the opposite is true. Avoid the manuscript speech if at all possible because it is very difficult to deliver effectively.

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Reputation Precedes Your Speech

By Stephen Boyd | April 2, 2007

Your reputation often precedes your speech or your message. People will not have a positive mental set to listen to you if you have a less than stellar communication reputation. Each time you talk, do what you can to leave a positive impression so that person will be ready to listen the next time you call or speak. Here are some tips to make that happen.

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A Time To Speak

By Stephen Boyd | March 9, 2007

You may sometimes wish you could die rather than give a speech, and public speaking did literally kill one of our presidents. He spoke nearly two hours - which was long enough to contract pneumonia. A lesson we learn is the importance of considering how long we speak.

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Coaching Made Easy

By Stephen Boyd | February 6, 2007

A recent Wall Street Journal article stressed that presentation skills training and coaching are in more demand today than ever because those skills are essential for promotion and recognition in most careers. Here are some ways to coach yourself.

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Develop Command Of The Language

By Stephen Boyd | January 4, 2007

Sometimes our words are not clear. People receive early impressions of you by the words you speak. Do your best to use the best words possible. To improve your communication skills, work on developing your language skills. Here are some ways of making that happen.

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Lowering The Risk For Failure

By Stephen Boyd | December 31, 2006

Many presentations require data to be presented. These kinds of evidence require the use of numbers. Numbers can be boring to listen to and tedious to present. Let's look at some of the ways to present statistics in the most interesting and persuasive manner.

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Using Statistics To Persuade

By Stephen Boyd | November 30, 2006

Many presentations require data to be presented. These kinds of evidence require the use of numbers. Numbers can be boring to listen to and tedious to present. Let's look at some of the ways to present statistics in the most interesting and persuasive manner.

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Seek Variety In Your Speaking

By Stephen Boyd | October 31, 2006

One of the ways to insure success as a speaker is to include variety in the content of your speech. It is hard to please everyone in an audience, so the more different things you include, the more likely you are to say something that everyone will take with them...

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Myths Of Public Speaking

By Stephen Boyd | September 30, 2006

In discussing public speaking with people over the years, I have often had to dispel myths or misconceptions. I'd like to address some of those in this article. Because of these myths, public speaking in general sometimes receives worse reviews than a specific speech.

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An Ending To Remember

By Stephen Boyd | June 30, 2006

Many speakers have a hard time ending a presentation. Because what you say last people remember best, you want to end with a flourish. You want people to go away talking about your speech and the ending can make that happen. Here are some suggestions to make that possible.

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Keep Your Speech Simple

By Stephen Boyd | May 31, 2006

Making long, rambling comments in discussion or taking two minutes to answer a question which could be done in a few seconds can negatively affect the credibility of the speaker. In fact, you may notice that you avoid certain people just because they take forever to communicate a message. One of the traits of an effective communicator is his or her ability to communicate simply and concisely.

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Speaking From A Manuscript

By Stephen Boyd | February 28, 2006

Manuscript speaking is reserved for special occasions. For example, you might be giving a presentation where every word must be exactly as you want it so you won't be misquoted or your speech may include technical information that must be carefully worded. When you do have to use a manuscript, here are tips to help you avoid simply reading to your audience.

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The Toast

By Stephen Boyd | December 31, 2005

One of the best ways to incorporate positive communication in any celebration is to toast the occasion, person, or people involved. The holiday season is an appropriate time to toast the special day, the new year, or the end of a successful year.

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Communicating In Conflict

By Stephen Boyd | November 30, 2005

Communicating in conflict is seen as a negative part of relating to people. But whether it is good or bad all depends on how conflict is handled. Conflict can be unsettling and unpredictable but if handled correctly both people come out of the discussion with new and useful information. Here are some suggestions on how to handle conflict positively.

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Resolving Conflict

By Stephen Boyd | October 15, 2005

Handling Conflict is not Communication 101 - it is a graduate seminar. It is not easy to talk and listen in conflict. Some people will avoid conflict at all costs because of how unpleasant it may be. But as humans, there are times when we must deal with conflict. Here are some suggestions on how to communicate under such circumstances.

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Superlatives In Speaking

By Stephen Boyd | September 30, 2005

Having delivered over 2400 speeches and 2500 sermons and listened to over 11,000 college student speeches over the past 35 years, I have pretty strong opinions about the bests practices that make up a good speech. Here are some of them...

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Was Your Presentation Effective

By Stephen Boyd | July 31, 2005

After a presentation, most audience members will applaud you when you finish and perhaps some will praise you after the presentation. These responses are often perfunctory rather than genuine compliments. In our culture it is just the accepted thing to do. How can you really tell that an audience was influenced by your presentation?

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A Powerful Persuasive Tool

By Stephen Boyd | June 30, 2005

You believe what you do for a career is important or you would not have chosen it. Convincing the world that it has value is sometimes another matter. When you are selling yourself to a client or to a superior, one of the best ways to emphasize your assets is to use the testimony of an individual or source the person respects.

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A Quick Way To Manifest Concern

By Stephen Boyd | June 15, 2005

When people talk to you, a quick way to let them know you really want to listen is to give a statement of empathy first. Empathy is putting yourself in the other persons shoes but with emotional separateness. You want to keep an emotional distance so that you can respond with objectivity.

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Making Ideas Clear

By Stephen Boyd | May 31, 2005

Unlike reading, where you can go back over the material as many times as you need to, speech content has to be instantly clear. Your audience member does not have a chance to go back over the material in order to absorb the information. So how does the speaker compensate for this problem?

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Directions That Work

By Stephen Boyd | March 31, 2005

Some of our most important communication involves giving and receiving directions. Here are some suggestions to make sure you do not end up in the south end of the city while the client is waiting for you in the north end.

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Go With the Little Voice

By Stephen Boyd | March 15, 2005

In public speaking, there are times when a little voice inside you seems to prompt you to do something you have not planned. Do not fight this urge. Some of your best ideas will come to you as you are speaking - you may think of a story or sentence that you had never practiced that seems just right at that moment.

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When To Memorize A Speech

By Stephen Boyd | February 28, 2005

Memorizing a speech creates many challenges--having a memory block, sounding mechanical in delivery, and lacking rapport with the audience, to name a few. Besides, memorizing a speech simply takes too much time. Thus I recommend not memorizing a speech. However, as is the case with most general rules, there are exceptions.

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Preparation Is Everything

By Stephen Boyd | February 15, 2005

You can have the greatest topic, be speaking to an enthusiastic audience, have material that this specific audience needs to hear, and be excited about your topic, and yet not be successful. Why? Because you lack proper preparation.

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Interrupting Is Not Necessarily Rude

By Stephen Boyd | January 31, 2005

When a person is talking to us, we usually consider interrupting him or her as rude and inappropriate. But there are times when it is OK and, in fact, quite suitable.

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Special Speeches

By Stephen Boyd | January 15, 2005

Special or ceremonial speeches are presentations that most of us will be called upon to deliver at some time. They include eulogies, introductions, presentations of awards, welcomes, and toasts. But even though they are delivered for different purposes, there are traits common to all special speeches.

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Improve Your Meetings Immediately

By Stephen Boyd | November 30, 2004

One of the reasons we don't enjoy meetings is that they are often conducted poorly. As our number of meetings increases, effective facilitation skills are essential.

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Getting People To Like You

By Stephen Boyd | November 15, 2004

People decide how they feel about you in the first few seconds of conversation. You want to make a good first impression. Here are some ways to do it.

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When You Debate Or Disagree

By Stephen Boyd | October 31, 2004

We are unlikely to be on television to debate or discuss issues that will change the world, but we all have situations where there is a debate of issues or opportunities to resolve conflict. Whatever the circumstances, here are some ways to ensure a positive outcome for you.

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Moving Beyond Novice

By Stephen Boyd | October 15, 2004

At what point do you go from being a novice speaker to an experienced and effective speaker? One does not simply arrive at that point because he or she has spoken a magical number of times. I think there is one major criterion for getting to that point: when you are more audience-centered than self-centered.

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Contrast With Startling Information

By Stephen Boyd | August 31, 2004

Public speeches are always enhanced by starting out with startling facts or statistics. Later in your speech, you can bring attention back to the speaker by inserting startling information. One way to include startling statements in a speech is the use of contrast.

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Dont Finish The Sentence

By Stephen Boyd | July 31, 2004

We can think over four times faster than we can talk, so we can have a tendency to interrupt the person talking and finish sentences for him or her. This is not only disrespectful, but also shows that you think what you have to say is more important than what the other person is saying.

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Getting The Audience Involved

By Stephen Boyd | July 31, 2004

If the speaker asks enough questions, eventually the audience may warm up and respond. But how do you motivate them to answer questions from the beginning?

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A Short Guide to Effective Public Speaking

By Stephen Boyd | July 19, 2004

Here are certain items every speech should include. Begin with an attention-getting device and preview your speech. Be animated in delivery and look at your audience as you speak. Organize your speech and have only 3 or 4 points. Use your own story and leave the audience with something to think about.

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Say The Right Words!

By Stephen Boyd | June 30, 2004

We all struggle with saying the wrong thing at times. There are situations when we regret what we said or wish we had said the message in a different way. We have all apologized at some point because we made a comment that offended or embarrassed someone. Here are suggestions for avoiding these problems.

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Communicate Positive Messages

By Stephen Boyd | May 31, 2004

Estee Lauder, famous for her cosmetics, died recently. Her message accompanying her product was positive and optimistic - Beauty is an attitude. Her approach to her cosmetics should be our approach whenever we communicate. Communicate positive messages whatever your topic. People receive enough negative messages when reading the front page of a newspaper or listening to headline news on the hour.

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Stating Your Objectives

By Speaking Tips | May 10, 2004

Seasoned presenters will generally determine their objectives as the first step in the preparation of their speech. Conversely, novice or occasional speakers may spend many hours revising and reorganizng their material and never realize they have omitted this first step. Objectives provide a road map to your speech's or presentation's final destination.

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Making Your First Keynote Speech

By Speaking Tips | May 3, 2004

Many professionals enjoy sharing their expertise with audiences. Speaking can be both a positive experience as well as a gratifying adjunct to your vocation. Many people have advanced their careers by devoting the time and effort required to be a competent public speaker. As you fine tune your speaking skills and your reputation grows it is possible, and perhaps even likely, that you may be asked to deliver a keynote address.

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Dont Let The Audience Forget You!

By Stephen Boyd | April 30, 2004

How do you distinguish yourself from other speakers so audience members will not forget you? You dont want to blend in with other speakers so that neither your message nor you are remembered. A major way to remain unforgettable to an audience is to use something unique about you or an uncommon approach to a common subject.

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Coping With The Unexpected

By Speaking Tips | April 26, 2004

As everyone knows, life occasionaly thows you a curve ball. This is just as true when giving a presentation as it is with any other aspect of your career, social or family life. When surprises happen, how you react to them can make all the difference. Whether they are perceived by the audience as a humorous interlude or a presentation disaster is your call.

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Changing Academic Public Speaking

By Paul Edwards | April 19, 2004

Boring, incomprehensible talks have somehow become a part of academic culture. The sciences and engineering have, on the whole, done better on this score than the humanities. Yet even in these fields, many people still have a lot to learn about the skills of public speaking.

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Ten Techniques To Enhance Training

By Speaking Tips | March 29, 2004

The quality of a training session can frequently be greatly improved if the trainer makes use of a few simple techniques to enhance their presentation. Here are ten techniques to help you turn your next training session into a memorable learning experience for your trainees and one in which the transfer of information is two-way rather than one-way.

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Connecting With An Audience

By Speaking Tips | March 22, 2004

Experienced speakers and trainers use a variety of connecting techniques. When you connect with an audience, you sense the energy flow between you and your listeners. You get positive feedback and feel "in the zone" while the audience feels pampered by your attention to their issues.

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Encouraging Questions

By Speaking Tips | March 8, 2004

Have you ever noticed that questions and answer sessions really add to some presentations while for others they seem to drag the energy down? When a question and answer session is tacked on to a presentation as a pro forma afterthought, the audience senses that the presenter is not interested in interacting with them. As a result, the presenter is likely to encounter dead silence when they ask if there are "any questions?"

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Notes About Notes

By Stephen Boyd | February 28, 2004

A problem for many speakers is using too many notes or not using them well. Audience members have a hard time paying attention when the speaker is looking down at his or her paper. Perfectly good speech content loses its impact when the speaker is bound to notes.

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Effective Conversation

By Stephen Boyd | February 28, 2004

Meeting someone for the first time can be awkward. Yet the first two minutes can determine the future of the relationship. Here are some ways to make those first two minutes count.

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Resolve To Communicate More Effectively

By Stephen Boyd | January 31, 2004

Nothing affects the quality of our lives more than our skills in communication. Let us resolve to improve our communication skills in the new year. Here are some simple suggestions on how to create more powerful communication skills in 2004.

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Effective Group Presentations

By Stephen Boyd | December 31, 2003

Group presentations are often more appropriate than one from a single speaker. Some sales presentations or company policy changes may require the expertise of several people in one presentation. Handling the group presentation with coordinating themes and strong support plus integrating multiple personalities and approaches into one presentation is a challenge. Here are some suggestions on how to make the group or multi-person presentation effective.

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Asking Open Questions

By Stephen Boyd | December 31, 2003

To improve the quality of your next conversation, learn to ask open questions. This will help you listen more than you talk, and you will obtain much more information with which to reach informed decisions. In addition, the person who asks questions can control the direction of the conversation.

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Building Self Confidence As You Speak

By Stephen Boyd | November 30, 2003

Even as experienced speakers there are times when we may not feel really comfortable giving a particular presentation. Sometimes a peer group can make us feel uncomfortable. Perhaps we are giving a presentation on a topic we have not addressed previously and our anxiety level rises. Here are some tips to combat these challenges.

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Avoid Common Presentation Errors

By Speaking Tips | November 24, 2003

If you've been to a conference, seminar or other business presentation recently, then you have likely been exposed to the reality that there are good speakers and then there are bad speakers. Here are some errors that speakers at the wrong end of the spectrum frequently make and some tips on how you can avoid them.

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Making Meaning Sure

By Stephen Boyd | September 30, 2003

Meaning is in people, not words. Thus when speaking to an audience, seek to speak words that will have the same meaning to both you and the listener.

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Dont Offend The Audience!

By Stephen Boyd | August 31, 2003

No speaker intends to annoy an audience, but in most speaking situations someone is just waiting to be offended. What can the speaker do to avoid offending an audience? Here are some suggestions to keep disgruntled listeners at a minimum and to stay in the good graces of the audience.

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After The Speech

By Stephen Boyd | August 31, 2003

Usually preparation before the presentation is emphasized for making an effective speech. But if you speak very much, what you do after the speech can help you become a more effective speaker as well.

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Play To Your Strengths As A Speaker

By Stephen Boyd | July 31, 2003

In attempting to improve our speaking, we often concentrate on overcoming our weaknesses. On a video playback of a speech we will look for all the mistakes and think of ways to improve. There is nothing wrong with doing that if we also will evaluate what our strengths are and work to accent our strong points as a speaker.

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Making Sense Out Of What You Say

By Stephen Boyd | July 31, 2003

One of the first concerns for a speaker during preparation is making sure the content makes sense to the audience. This is called reasoning, which is simply how we put our evidence or support together to develop a point.

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Getting Better At Presenting

By Stephen Boyd | June 30, 2003

Many of you reading this are experienced and effective speakers. But as with any other skill, you either keep getting better or you begin to lose your edge as a skillful speaker. Here are some suggestions for the good speaker to become even more effective.

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To Ensure Success In Speaking Anticipate

By Stephen Boyd | May 31, 2003

We all know that to be a careful driver on the highways, we need always to anticipate. When we see brake lights ahead, we anticipate some traffic problem and slow down. If we come to an intersection we look ahead to see if anyone is entering it before us. In like manner, to be an effective speaker we need to anticipate.

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Presenting In Tough Times

By Stephen Boyd | April 30, 2003

As a speaker, keeping the attention of an audience in any situation is challenging, but in time of war it is especially difficult. The minds of audience members are on family and friends, our fighting men and women, and they have an overall concern about security either in our community or in the world.

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Audiences Will Not Remember Much!

By Stephen Boyd | March 31, 2003

We are naive if we think every audience will remember everything we say. That simply will not happen. At best we can expect our listeners to take a point or a story with them. We can improve their chances for retention, however, by including the following techniques...

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Controlling The Unexpected In Speaking

By Stephen Boyd | March 31, 2003

You can be well prepared and still have things go wrong in a speaking situation because of the unexpected. Here are tips to control the unexpected...

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Be Careful What You Speak

By Stephen Boyd | February 28, 2003

Former Senate Republican leader Trent Lott learned how important it is to be careful what you say in a speech. In what seemed to be simply complimentary remarks at the celebration of Strom Thurmond's one hundredth birthday, he made what he called "winging it" comments...

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Observing Your Audience

By Stephen Boyd | February 28, 2003

Yogi Berra once said, "You can observe a lot just by watching." Observing an audience before you speak can really help gauge the attitude and atmosphere of the situation...

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