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PowerPoint Presentation Presentation public speaking video

Closed Captioning with Google Slides provides CC for live presentations

In an attempt to make live presentations more accessible, I first used Closed Captioning in Google Slides for a presentation I gave around a year ago. Closed Captioning in Google Slides is easy to use and does a terrific job.

All you need is Google Slides, Google Chrome, a live internet connection, and a microphone. That’s it. In the above video, I show you how to activate it. The video is under a minute. It’s that easy.

But does it work? Yes. And it works really well.

I was in a room with about 100 people. The internet connection was steady but slow — and yet, Google translated what I said in real time with about 97% accuracy for a 45 minute presentation.

In the video above, you’ll see that I get 100% accuracy. This was a one-take video that I filmed on my laptop, at home, with a laptop mike. Nothing fancy.

But now I have a confession: even though I’ve established that Google Slides Closed Captioning for live presentations is a great tool: I still don’t use Closed Captioning for 100% of my presentations.

I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Old habits dying hard?

I felt bad about this, and vowed to do better in the future. I mean, WHY NOT make live presentations more accessible? Why not use it for EVERY live presentation?

And then, I was surprised that I got some pushback for wanting to make my live presentations more accessible.

“Not every presentation needs closed captioning, Laura,” came the naysayer. “Why not ask your audience whether they want it or not? After all, not everyone needs or wants Closed Captioning. It might be distracting.”

To those naysayers, I say this:

Remember when I said “old habits die hard?” I think that’s the case here. For the past year, I didn’t used closed captioning because it wasn’t my HABIT to do so. For years, I’ve been presenting live without closed captioning.

But if I use Closed Captioning every time I present, it will become a habit.

And to those who say, “…but not everyone needs it, so why not ask your audience if they want it or not?” — I have this to say:

  1. These are early days in providing closed captioning. If you’re against it, it might simply because you’re not exposed to it. Once you become familiar with it, you might find you appreciate the visual support.
  2. The last thing I want to do is make someone in my audience uncomfortable. To single them out. To make them admit, to a roomful of people that they need Closed Captioning.
  3. Your day is coming. Someday, you might need to rely on Closed Captioning or other Assistive Technologies. When we design an inclusive experience, we’re improving the design for YOU.

In the future, I’ll do a better job of using Closed Captioning for my live presentations. I’ll get into the habit of using Google Slides with Closed Captioning for my presentations. If we have the technology, why not use it?

And if you use PowerPoint, it’s easy enough to run your show through Google Slides to give your audience a more inclusive experience. What else can we do to make our live presentations more accessible to our audiences?




Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.



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Presentation public speaking video

Walk and Talk meetings for data and research briefs

Do you do “walk & talk” meetings at your organization?

One of my favorite times for a “walk & talk” is when I’m presenting research findings. If it all possible — due to the weather and other constraints — I want to get my clients out of the office and into nature.

My reasoning? Clients tend to want to dive into spreadsheets and data dashboards — while I want to keep the discussion on key findings.

My solution? Get them out of the office and into the woods!

While walking, I’ll present key findings and a summary. We can talk through any issues that come up.

And if clients want to dive into the data, they know it’s in the report. They can review it when we’re back in the office.

If you don’t want clients to get lost in the data — lost in the woods — why not try a walk and talk meeting?

Serve as a guide. Lead your audience out of the woods so they can see the whole forest!

When’s the last time you tried a “walk and talk” meeting? How did it work out?


Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

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PowerPoint PowerPoint Presentation Presentation social media video

Get a QR code that links to your LinkedIn profile – put it on the last slide of your presentation

How do you get a QR code of your LinkedIn profile? You can do it directly from within LinkedIn!

I often put a QR code that leads to my LinkedIn profile on or near the last slide of my presentation. I sometimes will put one in a video.

With a QR code that leads to my LinkedIn profile, an audience member can scan the code and connect with me on LinkedIn, if they wish.

A few people asked me how to get their own QR code to use in their presentations and videos — and the answer is that it’s available right from within LinkedIn!

In this short video, (45 seconds) I show you how to create and scan a LinkedIn QR code.

If you feel so inclined, feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn. Scan the code in the video, and you’ll go straight to my profile!


Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

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Blogging Coaching communication content ideas design Education PowerPoint PowerPoint Presentation Presentation public speaking social media Twitter video

How to transform presentation content into video social media posts

Here’s a question about presentations and videos I started to get a lot last month. I’ll paraphrase it:

Hey Laura. How do you do those square, short, silent little videos that you share on LinkedIn and Twitter?

The answer is: really easily! I use a tool called Canva. Update: And here’s a direct link so you can use Canva to create presentations and slides.

As a stand & deliver trainer, I have oodles of presentation content. Canva lets me repurpose bits and pieces of this content for easy social media sharing.

Yes, Canva excels at quick online video creation. I’m finding a lot of people use Canva — but we tend not to think of using it for video. We tend to think of it for images.

I’m also thinking a lot of people have PowerPoint presentations. Why not try using Canva to repurpose your presentation content for social media posts?

Canva lets you do this in a way that’s super easy to accomplish. I show you how in this two minute video. Enjoy!


Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

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Presentation

White board markers and the stages of grief

stages of grief white board marker

You go to give a whiteboard presentation. You pick up a marker.

But it’s dead. 💀

Happens all the time.

You then go through 5 stages of grief.

1. Denial: It’s not really dead. 2

. Bargaining: Shake it really hard, try to write with it.

3. Sadness: Pick up another.

4. Anger: Argh! This #@@!! one doesn’t work either!

5. Acceptance: Throw all dead markers in the trash.

Lesson learned: if I’m giving a white board talk, I bring backup markers!

(Those little devils seldom work the way they’re supposed to! 😈)

But this whiteboard marker situation also provides an opportunity for a leadership, culture, and values discussion at your organization.

⁉Are you the kind of company where people put dead markers back on the tray?

❓Or are you the kind of company where people know to refill, recycle, or throw away?

❓Are you the kind of company that recycles or uses refillable markers? ⁉Or do you keep buying the plastic, throwaway ones?

🤔 What do your white board marker habits say about your corporate culture and values?

——-

Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

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Coaching communication content ideas Education PowerPoint PowerPoint Presentation Presentation public speaking video

Introduce emotional relevance to your presentations

Brain Rules by John Medina

“We don’t pay attention to boring things.”

John Medina, Brain Rules

Sounds basic, right?

But how do you NOT be boring when you’re speaking or presenting?

Medina tells us to be sure to introduce something emotionally relevant every 10 minutes.

At least every 10 minutes!

If we don’t, we risk losing the attention and interest of our audiences….because….

“We don’t pay attention to boring things.”

What can you do to shake things up for your audience?

Click on the video to discover 5 things you can do…in under 51 seconds!


Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

Categories
Presentation

Slide design: check your color contrasts for accessibility

Check color contrasts for accessibility

Design your slides with accessibility in mind.

(I was trying to read small black text on a gray-radiant background earlier this month. I gave up.)

One accessibility violation I see in many slide designs involves the use of color.

❌ Red text on a green background? Yikes!

❌ Green text on a red background? Don’t!

❌ Red text on a blue background? Shudders!

❌ Blue text on a red background? Just…no.

But why not?

Remember, people with red-green color blindness can’t see red on green.

And people with photosensitivity may feel ill with blue/red color combos.

Bonus: When you design with accessibility in mind, you make your slides lovelier for everyone!

As we design slides, we’ll want to check our colors to make sure they’re accessible to all.

You can check your text and background colors for accessibility here. https://webaim.org/resources/contrast…

While this site 👆👆👆 was designed with WEB accessibility in mind, you can use it for SLIDE DESIGN, as well.


Laura Bergells is a professional story finder. She writes, coaches, teaches, and speaks. Check out her online courses at LinkedIn Learning.

If you’re a LinkedIn Premium or Lynda.com member, these courses are free! If you’re not a member, you can either become a member or buy each of these classes à la carte.

Categories
Coaching communication design PowerPoint PowerPoint Presentation Presentation public speaking

Never end your presentation with Q&A.

Never end your presentation with a Q&A.

Got that? Don’t end your next presentation by saying, “Any questions?”

There’s no need to announce that it’s time for questions and answers.

You can do better.

Always plan a strong closing.

If you’re planning a Q&A session, you can have it near the end, but not at the end.

Answer audience questions, then deliver your closing statement.

Don’t risk letting your super awesome presentation drift off into whatever might be on the mind of the last person who asked a question.

Wrap it up, partner. Put a bow on that presentation. 🎁

Consider this: I cover five strong closing techniques in my public speaking foundations course on LinkedIn Learning.

The full course is one hour. It’s a great resource to revisit before your next big speech or presentation, free for LinkedIn Premium Members.

Check it out. >>> http://linkedin-learning.pxf.io/JAb4N

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Coaching communication crisis public speaking

Answering Q&A questions and the path to wisdom…

Ah, Q&A. The “question and answer” portion of your presentation, where anything can happen!

Instead of dealing with a Q&A hog, let’s say someone in your audience asks you a brilliant question. It’s timely and topical! It’s directly related to your content! At this point, your answer can fall into three categories.

1. Hey, I know all about that!

2. I don’t know, but I can find out.

3. I don’t know.

Each category comes with its own set of challenges. Let’s explore each.

  1. I know all about that! On its face, this category seems easy to answer, but it’s not. In a Q&A, you’ll need to be brief. You must curb any tendency to give a comprehensive, long-winded answer. Being brief can be difficult when you know something thoroughly. Deliver a concise and concrete answer, then move on to the next question.
  2. I don’t know, but I can find out. Category two is a little easier. Your answer can be something like, “I don’t know, but I know I can find out. Give me your contact information, and I can get the answer to you after the presentation.” Move to the next question or closing, then follow up with the questioner when you said you would.
  3. I don’t know. Category three should be the easiest of all. It contains 3 of the 4 short statements that lead to wisdom. You can say one to three of them, as appropriate. Practice saying this out loud, every day.

    “I’m sorry. I don’t know. Does anyone else know?”

But why is “I’m sorry. I don’t know. Does anyone else know?” so difficult for so many presenters to say? I suspect it’s because they feel because if they are leading a discussion, they simply MUST know everything about it., or at least appear to.

But remember, you’re only leading the discussion. You’re not monopolizing it. You’re not expected to know everything. And no one likes a know-it-all.

Consider the four statements that lead to wisdom:

  1. “I don’t know” is one of the four statements that leads to wisdom. Practice saying it every day. It can help ease any discomfort you may feel when tempted to pontificate on a subject you know nothing about. Audiences will appreciate your honesty and simplicity. It’s refreshing.
  2. “I need help” is the second statement that leads to wisdom. Ask for help when you need it. “Does anybody else know?” might yield a helpful response from your audience or allies. If no one else answers, you might feel inspired to smile and say, “It looks like I’m not alone in not knowing the answer to your question!”
  3. “I’m sorry” is the third statement that leads to wisdom. You may or may not feel inclined to preface your “I don’t know” with “I’m sorry”. If you’re not sorry, don’t say you are. If you are, do so.
  4. Fittingly, “I was wrong” is the fourth statement that leads to wisdom. And it’s the one statement you won’t have to say during your presentation if you answer difficult questions truthfully and concisely.

Outside of Q&A, practice saying the four statements that lead to wisdom:

  1. I don’t know.
  2. I’m sorry.
  3. I was wrong.
  4. I need help.

Get comfortable saying these phrases. If you want to be happy and wise, you’ll be saying them a lot in a lifetime! Beyond wisdom, you’ll gain empathy and understanding through regularly saying these phrases.

Good luck on your next Q&A!


For your consideration: I go over responding to difficult questions in more detail in my Crisis Communications course at LinkedIn Learning. It’s under the section: “Developing Statements”.

Check it out here: https://www.linkedin.com/learning/crisis-communication/

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Coaching communication PowerPoint PowerPoint Presentation Presentation public speaking

The 5 Worst Ways to Begin a Speech or Presentation…

5 worst ways to start a speech or presentation

Let’s explore 5 of the worst ways to open your next keynote or major presentation…that we hear ALL TOO OFTEN!

  1. Ahem! (clearing your throat – do vocal warmups beforehand, please!)
  2. Thank you…. (your audience doesn’t need to hear this.)
  3. It’s really great to be here….(you’re wasting even more time.)
  4. Can you hear me? (do your audio check before you hit the stage.)
  5. Hey, can you see my slides? (check your visuals beforehand, please!)

    If you’ve done one or all of these, you can do better. I know you can!

    Start with a strong opening technique.

Consider this: I cover five strong opening techniques in my public speaking foundations course on LinkedIn Learning.

The full course is one hour. It’s a great resource to revisit before your next big speech or presentation, free for LinkedIn Premium Members.

I get paid when you click on the link and take the course, though.

Check it out. >>> http://linkedin-learning.pxf.io/JAb4N