How to Engage Your Audience During a Talk or Workshop

Here’s a scenario you’ve probably experienced many times as an audience member.  The presenter at the front of the room is carrying out the entire “show” – lecturing, spraying you with information, and delivering what he or she thinks is great value. You’re sitting passively in listening mode – and eventually succumbing to EGO. No, it’s not what you think. EGO stands for [Read more…]


Stop Working So Hard

At the end of one of my workshops, Derek, a trainer and coach at a telecom company exclaimed, “I’ve been reborn. I’m a whole new presenter now!”

What had triggered this “aha” moment?

Derek had gained some new perspectives that had impacted the way he saw himself at the front of the room. The old Derek assumed that when he took on the responsibility of leading a training session or giving a presentation that it was his job to [Read more…]


How to Demotivate Those Around You

As a leader, whether it’s in a temporary position at the front of a room or more permanently as a member of a management team, we have a responsibility to keep those around us engaged in the moment, in their work, and in their organization. How we communicate is a key contributor to employee engagement and its cousin [Read more…]


Go Ahead — Ask Your Stupid Question

September 28 is “Ask a Stupid Question Day”.

According to, the roots of “Ask a Stupid Question Day” go back to the 1980’s. At the time, there was a movement by teachers to try to get their students to ask more questions in the classroom. Children sometimes hold back, fearing their question is stupid, and asking it will result in ridicule.

The fear of ridicule doesn’t change when you become an adult. As a leader you risk a great deal every time you communicate. Whether you’re making a comment or asking a question, your credibility is at stake.

Is there such a thing as a stupid question? [Read more…]


Ask More – Tell Less

Is it time to stop talking and start asking questions?

Many leaders don’t ask questions – of their teams, their colleagues, or their customers. Why not? In many instances, they [Read more…]


Be Yourself – Even while Presenting

How natural is your presentation style? So often it seems that presenters leave their personalities behind as soon as they set foot on stage.  It’s not clear where people got the idea that a presentation should be done without any personality or enjoyment, but it has resulted in many boring and [Read more…]


What’s Improv Got to Do With You?

Have you ever studied improvisational theater? Improv — like Second City or “Whose Line is It, Anyways?”

Are you thinking, “Why would I? I don’t want to be an actor, and besides, I’m not funny.” If so, I’d like to share a secret with you. [Read more…]