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Podium Communications Blog

Concrete language communicates truth

Some jobs are rich in jargon, acronyms and abstract language. Defence, health and IT are just three areas where jargon is common. But take that jargon into a public forum and it might label you as untrustworthy, or even a liar. The ‘banish jargon’ advice we give in Podium’s presentation skills workshops is reinforced by a survey out of New York and Basel, Switzerland. […]

Pooh Bear’s plan to kick-start creativity

Take a lesson from Winnie the Pooh: “Don’t underestimate the value of Doing Nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering.” This is a great time to apply Pooh Bear’s advice. It’s August. The dead of summer. Nothing’s happening. Your phone’s not ringing. Your calendar is empty. So what should you do?  Simple. Follow Winnie the […]

Simple message strikes a chord

Helmets off to the Canadian Football League for their response to the appalling racial violence in Charlottesville, Va. The League had been planning a Fall launch for their Diversity is Strength T-shirts. But as the enormity of the white supremacist-inspired violence emerged, the League decided the message needed to be shared sooner. So they changed plans, scrambled some of the T-shirts on to planes, […]

Is spell-check costing you money?

Is spell-check costing you money? Or damaging your reputation? As we stab away at our devices in our rush to communicate, we’ve come to rely on the auto-correct function to save us time and effort. But perhaps it’s time to be less trusting. We smile when the White House issues a news release talking about ‘lasting peach’ in the Middle East’. We know they […]

Engage your audience with your eyes and your posture

One of the most powerful ways we communicate is not with our words. It’s with our body. Body language – non-verbal communication – is that evocative combination of gestures, facial expressions, body position and eye movements. Our brains are powerful computers which can evaluate all these things and come to a conclusion about a speaker in a nano-second. When you speak, you want your […]

10 alternatives to ‘misery’ of slide shows

Dr Nick Morgan is one of the top communication theorists and coaches in North America. And he doesn’t mince words when it comes to slide-based presentations. Nick Morgan describes most of the thousands of slide shows delivered every day as excruciating. ‘Human misery on a massive scale,’ he calls it. He’s come up with 10 ways of getting an audience to engage with a […]

How to build better slide presentations

Looking for a great way of making your slide presentations stand out from the crowd? Try dumping all those bullet points. A whole lot of research into how the brain works suggests that bulleted lists of information on slides is the least-effective way of communicating with your audience. It is especially ineffective when the text on screen doesn’t match the presenter’s words. Dr Richard […]

Time to add a little sass

The dictionary defines sass as boldness, cheek, chutzpah and nerve – all great qualities for a leader. But I’m using SASS as an acronym for four tips to make you an amazing speaker. S – for Spirit. Two of the best speeches I heard were delivered by two women who were abused. I had two hours to coach them to present to a group […]

First-rate ‘you’ is always good enough

The key to being a persuasive, dynamic speaker is simple: be yourself. But what if you are afraid to be who you are, or you’re extremely nervous? Take a lesson from the movies. I’m sure you’ve seen a scene like this: the main character has to inspire a crowd of people to action. She has a prepared text. But she hesitates. She’s nervous, and […]

Don’t skimp on the details of your stories

If you wanted to be inspired by a speaker, which of these stories would you rather hear? “Jody got up earlier than usual. She went to the office. Gave her presentation. She talked about her new idea, and it went really well.” Or “Jody usually gets up at 6 am. But yesterday she beat the clock and got up at 5. She faced an […]

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