Walk and Talk meetings for data and research briefs

By Laura Bergells on

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 …

Canva for Video Posts

How to transform presentation content into video social media posts

By Laura Bergells on

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. As a stand & deliver trainer, I …

Brain Rules by John Medina

Introduce emotional relevance to your presentations

By Laura Bergells on

“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 …

Q&A at the end - not at the end of your speech

Never end your presentation with Q&A.

By Laura Bergells on

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 …

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 …

Lose your fear and learn to present on-camera.

Lose your fear and learn to present on-camera

By Laura Bergells on

Three years ago, I organized an online web conference. At the request of an organization, I interviewed three of their Subject Matter Experts to get background information for a presentation. The following photo is a re-creation of what I saw in this online meeting: Uh-huh. That’s right. For almost the entire interview, I stared at …

Illusion of Transparency

The science is IN! What every anxious public speaker must know before their next big presentation…

By Laura Bergells on

After a student gives a class presentation, I’ll sometimes conduct a quick poll. I’ll ask the entire class: on a scale of 0-10, how nervous did the speaker appear? The audience might give the speaker a 2 or a 3. But the speaker? A nervous speaker might rate themselves a 7 or 9. That’s a …

speech pace

Speech pace: do you talk too fast, too slow…or just right?

By Laura Bergells on

I designed an exercise to give public speaking students insight into the concept of pace. If you’re curious about your own speaking pace, you can complete this exercise in minutes. Try it alone, or as part of a class (or party?) activity. Step One: The script below contains 170 words. Read it to yourself, so …

public speaking head trip

One Simple Mind Game That Can Make You Feel Better About Public Speaking…

By Laura Bergells on

People say they’re scared of public speaking, but are they really? I see these people speak in public all the time. They’re relaxed, confident — and they seem to be enjoying themselves. Take a friend of mine. Let’s call him Greg, because that’s his name. Greg insists he’s terrified of public speaking. Yet, I’ve seen …