Speak Schmeak

10 reasons to join the Presenting for Humans Success Circle

Speak Schmeak

Are you thinking about joining the Presenting for Humans Success Circle , but not sure if it's right for you? Perhaps I can help you decide with these points about the benefits of the program to you!

2018 160

Let go instead of holding on (to your content)

Speak Schmeak

"Perfection is finally attained, not when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no longer anything to take away." ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, aircraft designer and author of The Little Prince I'm fortunate that, in most of my speaking, I'm not required to be particularly concise.

2018 157

You don't need a stage to need stage presence

Speak Schmeak

I was recently contacted by a woman who manages a small team of young, inexperienced salespeople. She was primarily concerned with their lack of self-awareness; their behaviors in front of clients and prospects were less-than-stellar. One person bites their nails in meetings.

Stage 198

I can do anything better than I can

Speak Schmeak

Maybe you've heard the song "Anything You Can Do" from the musical "Annie Get Your Gun." It's a classic duet with the characters Annie Oakley and Frank Butler attempting to prove their ability to outdo each other in a variety of tasks.

2018 160

Communication requires presence: Why I won't have a meeting with you while driving

Speak Schmeak

For those of you who are of the opinion that talking on the phone while driving (sometimes with yelling or fighting kids in the back seat) makes more effective or productive use of your time, I doubt you'll change your habits after this one post.

2017 189

I want to see the speaker, not the coaching

Speak Schmeak

I recently attended an event with a long lineup of speakers. I'm like a kid in a candy store at events with lots of speakers!

2016 207

It's my tenth blogiversary!

Speak Schmeak

Ten years ago this week, I started blogging. My first post was published on October 9, 2006. Since that time, I've published 1,475 posts, I've saved 86 drafts that are still waiting to be finished and published, and I'm turning about 60 of them into a book to be published by the end of this year.

2016 203

You have a platform, but are you making it count?

Speak Schmeak

Whenever a celebrity—whether actor, singer, athlete or other entertainer—takes the opportunity at an awards ceremony or other public event to speak out about a political issue, certain segments of the public immediately begin scolding and lashing out. It's inappropriate!" they say.

10 reasons to join the Presenting for Humans Success Circle

Speak Schmeak

Are you thinking about joining the Presenting for Humans Success Circle , but not sure if it's right for you? Perhaps I can help you decide with these ten reasons I think the program is worth joining!

2017 151

You're not just competing with other speakers

Speak Schmeak

In the entrepreneurial world, and especially in the speaking and coaching worlds, we like to say "There is no competition." You see, we all have something unique to offer, we each have a unique voice and message, and no one else can do what we do in exactly the same way we do it. And this is true.

2016 196

Presenting for Humans: Insights for Speakers on Ditching Perfection and Creating Connection

Speak Schmeak

It's coming, it's coming! I'm expecting my book, Presenting For Humans: Insights for Speakers on Ditching Perfection and Creating Connection , to be available on Amazon by the end of March, and hopefully to have some hard copies in hand to sign for my VIP supporters!

2017 168

Fear of success is real, and it sucks

Speak Schmeak

At last month's Shake Up Your Speaking retreat, I gave the attendees an exercise that involve picking a temporary tattoo out of a bag, applying it to their arm, and then applying the message on the tattoo to where they were in their speaking journey.

2016 203

Are you comparing your 3D self to a cardboard cutout?

Speak Schmeak

Presentation Guru has published one of my articles this week on why it's harmful to compare ourselves to others, and how to stop. Will you ever be a great presenter if you don’t believe in your own ability and worth?

2017 148

Optimism: Finding the upside of the inevitable

Speak Schmeak

Today, I was lamenting the lack of rain in Southern California, as we come to the end of our usual "rainy" month with below-seasonal totals. The ongoing severe drought is our #1 concern here, and every day that goes by without rain puts us more and more into a water deficit.

Want to sound smarter when speaking?

Speak Schmeak

I received the following email the other day, and I thought it would be worth sharing my response with you, because it goes to the heart of my philosophy of public speaking. "I I am writing an article on ways to sound smarter when speaking.

2017 154

You don't have to go it alone

Speak Schmeak

"How can I get my audience to ask more questions?" "How How do I create notes that are useful?" "How How do I make a more effective call to action?" "How How do I adjust my content into longer/shorter presentations?" "How How do I put together a speaker proposal for a conference?" "How

2017 148

Do your audience's filters override your message?

Speak Schmeak

It's a story about a fig. It's a very simple story. This fig is HUGE. I posted this picture on Facebook of the fig filling the palm of my hand. I thought the fig would speak for itself. But I was wrong. I started getting comments like, "Can't get them here!"

2016 173

The 4 principles every successful speaker must master

Speak Schmeak

Just a quick video for you today to share these four principles (and give you a sneak peak at my upcoming retreat)! Authenticity Confidence Engaging the Audience Preparation Programs The Business of Speaking Training

2017 151

It's hard to be human

Speak Schmeak

Pretending to be a giant at the Christmas tree lot Most of my clients aren't afraid of speaking. They're well past the point where they avoid speaking engagements or rush to get them over with.

2017 142

3 Ways To Listen To Your Inner Voice For A Happy And Successful Life - Guest Post by Debbie Lyn Toomey

Speak Schmeak

Have you ever woken up to a voice that came from nowhere? It has happened to me many times. In fact, it has gotten to a point that when I do hear it, I know enough not to complain but rather listen when it wakes me up in the middle of the night. No, I’m not crazy. I’m a believer. That’s right.

2016 173

Tangible examples always win

Speak Schmeak

Speakers face some of their biggest challenges when it comes to presenting data. There is something about pie charts and diagrams that PowerPoint users are drawn to like moths to a flame.

2016 154

I did everything wrong

Speak Schmeak

I'm a veteran speaker and trainer. My own experience of almost 25 years of speaking, teaching and training, plus my background in theater, my M.A.

2016 170

5 Creative Ways to Spice up your Presentation: Guest Post by Alli Matson

Speak Schmeak

Occasionally, a guest post comes across my desk that is too entertaining to pass up. Enjoy this contribution by Alli Matson of Presentation Wit.

2017 139

What speakers can learn from comedians about language and rhythm

Speak Schmeak

Comedians are some of the best teachers of language and rhythm. I've written more than 20 posts about comedians and what speakers can learn from them, and I'm constantly inspired by how creative they are with their words and delivery.

2017 139

Julia Child's advice to speakers

Speak Schmeak

“This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook – try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!” ~ Julia Child Okay, so maybe she wasn't referring to speakers, but who can argue that her advice surpasses cooking and crosses over into many other areas?

2016 154

This is how the pros do it: Kelly Clarkson

Speak Schmeak

By now you've seen last week's performance by Kelly Clarkson on American Idol. It was an extremely moving performance, as we would all agree. What I want to talk about today, however, is her professionalism. This is what a pro looks like, whether performer or speaker (and usually, we're both). (

2016 165

My theory about "winging it"

Speak Schmeak

Check this out: People who "wing it" are far more afraid of failure and rejection than those who prepare, although it might seem to be the opposite.

Wings 165

"Soulless perfection" is the wrong goal

Speak Schmeak

Anyone who watched the final season of Americal Idol will recall Dalton Rapattoni , the blue-eyed, blond-haired, baby-faced, guy-liner-wearing rocker who took third place in the show's final competition.

2016 148

Will the timing ever be right?

Speak Schmeak

How many times have you waited to start something until the timing has been "right?" How did that go? Did you ever start? Did you wait so long that the opportunity was no longer available? Did you wait so long that you lost your chance?

2016 145

Good things take time

Speak Schmeak

Okay, maybe not all good things take time. I mean, a quick summer salad of ripe tomatoes, fresh burrata cheese and a drizzle of olive oil takes about five minutes, but it's delicious.

2016 151

How is dating like public speaking?

Speak Schmeak

Have you ever been on a date? Did you enjoy it? Did you hate it? You've probably had both experiences! Did you ask the other person out? Did they ask you out? Maybe you've just kind of eased into it by saying "We should do something sometime." (I

2015 168

5 reasons you haven't signed up for the Shake Up Your Speaking retreat

Speak Schmeak

We're getting down to the wire. Shake Up Your Speaking: Get Real. Get Results" begins on March 21. My Bring-a-Friend rate expires on Friday. And the special hotel block rate (a really great deal!) is going away on February 27.

2016 145

Virtual networking: Open the circle

Speak Schmeak

As I've written here before, I can be shy at networking events. But I've trained myself to put out my hand and introduce myself to people even if I feel inside like I want to run away.

2015 162

Thou shalt hide thy weirdness: Guest post by Jason Kotecki

Speak Schmeak

Jason is a non-caped crusader fighting against Adultitis. I've been a fan of his work for years, and when he offered me this post, I jumped at the chance to share his writing with you.

2015 160

Stay weird.

Speak Schmeak

Our favorite, and most effective, awards show speeches tend to go one of two directions: Humor or passion. Both kinds of speeches have the same effect, to trigger an emotional response in the audience. The response to the humorous speech is laughter, if only a chuckle or an internal giggle.

2015 168

Storytelling in 30 seconds - can you do it?

Speak Schmeak

It's been a while since I posted about a TV commercial (ah, the beauty of the DVR), but here's one I came across recently that perfectly demonstrates the concepts of concise, compelling and clear storytelling.

2015 154

My 2015 holiday speaker gift list is here!

Speak Schmeak

It''s the most wonderful time of the year! And it''s also the time of the year, when I update my annual list of speaker gifts, to help you find the best gifts for the speaker in your life -- who might just be you!

2015 173

Create a safe space for group interaction

Speak Schmeak

The other day, I was talking to a client about some problems she had experienced during a presentation. She had encountered a group who was resistant to some of her ideas and essentially put up a roadblock to any further discussion.

2015 148

A tale of two wineries -- and what speakers can learn from them

Speak Schmeak

Municipal Winemakers and Saarloos & Sons are two of my favorite wineries. Of course, I love their wines, and their wines are one of the ways they differentiate themselves among the many, MANY wineries in Santa Barbara County.

2014 194

What's your theme for 2016?

Speak Schmeak

Happy New Year! And just like that (imagine me snapping my fingers), it's 2016. A full week into 2016. And like the past five or six years, I have a theme to guide me.

2016 142