5 worst ways to start a speech or presentation

The 5 Worst Ways to Begin a Speech or Presentation…

By Laura Bergells on

Let’s explore 5 of the worst ways to open your next keynote or major presentation…that we hear ALL TOO OFTEN! Ahem! (clearing your throat – do vocal warmups beforehand, please!) Thank you…. (your audience doesn’t need to hear this.) It’s really great to be here….(you’re wasting even more time.) Can you hear me? (do your …

how to generate chit chat

How to generate chit-chat in online meetings and classes

By Laura Bergells on

Chit-chat is valuable. It’s how we connect with each other. It generates feelings of trust and empathy. How do you generate chit-chat and off-topic discussions in online classes and meetings? Here are my top 6 ways. 1. Pre-game. I tell students that I show up 15 minutes before class starts. If they’d like to pop …

Uptalk can be lovely

Uptalk can be lovely

By Laura Bergells on

As we move from authoritarian leadership styles to more collaborative leadership styles, you might want to insert a little uptalk into your conversations. What’s uptalk? It’s when you raise your voice at the end of a sentence. You speak a sentence, but the upward lilt makes it sound like a question. It makes you sound …

Flags, Bridges, and Hooks

Practice flags, bridges, and hooks

By Laura Bergells on

You’ll want to practice your flags, bridges, and hooks. They can help you as you present on camera or go into media interviews. Flags, bridges, and hooks help make a media interview conversational. They also help you answer tough questions and make a stronger impact. 🚩 Flagging statements signal you’re about to say something important. …

Get out of your head with actioning

Try this 1 mindfulness technique to reduce stammering

By Laura Bergells on

When smart people start to stammer… …it’s often because they’re thinking 10 steps ahead! 🤔 They’re thinking about what they’re going to say in 5 minutes.🤔 They’re thinking about what someone might ask them in 2 minutes.🤔 They’re even thinking about what they might forget to say! All that thinking? It’s what smart people do! …

just act natural

Public Speaking and Speaking on Camera: Why “Just Act Natural” is Bad Advice

By Laura Bergells on

Let me explain what I’m doing right now. I am sitting alone in a room and I am talking to a piece of glass. And that’s why I think the advice “just act natural” is a bogus piece of public speaking advice. It’s especially egregious for anyone who has to talk in front of a …

Zoom meeting popcorn rule for polls

Zoom Polls: Use the Popcorn Rule

By Laura Bergells on

How long should you wait before ending your Zoom poll? 🍿“USE THE BURNT POPCORN RULE!”🍿 What’s the Popcorn Rule? Think about popping corn. After a few minutes of popping, you’ve got a good batch of popcorn to eat. But you still might be thinking, “But wait. There might be a few unpopped kernels. Maybe I should …

Turkey Tail Technique for on camera presentations

Try the Turkey Tail Technique in your next Zoom Meeting

By Laura Bergells on

You need to maintain eye contact with a reporter or interviewer during an on-camera appearance. And yet, you need to cover your main talking points. And stick to an agenda and stay on time. And you don’t want to have wandering or shifty eyes while you’re talking on-camera! What to do, what to do? How …

bats in the cave Zoom meetings

Zoom Meetings: Prevent BATS IN THE CAVE with 2 simple tips

By Laura Bergells on

I’ve been in quite a few Zoom web meetings lately, and I’ve seen a lot of BATS IN THE CAVE, if you know what I mean. If you don’t know what I mean by BATS IN THE CAVE — it’s when someone is using the camera on their laptop and I can look straight up …

networking look at feet

Body Language Tip: when networking, look at feet

By Laura Bergells on

Some people find networking awkward, but it doesn’t have to be. Not if you get in the habit of looking at feet. Feet??? Yes, feet! Feet point toward interest. If you’re talking to someone and your feet are pointing toward each other, cool. You’re both interested and engaged. But when someone’s feet start to stray, …