3 strategies to help you connect with your audience

Photo by Antenna on Unsplash

Imagine you’ve been invited to give a presentation to update some executive leaders on a project you’re working on. The thought of having to present for this group conjures an interesting combination of emotions. You feel everything from fear and anxiety to excitement and pride. Your thoughts are all over the place. You love the idea of getting exposure with the executives but what if you screw it up or they just don’t get it? The pressure is on to crush this presentation. This is your one shot to make a good impression with people that really matter.

You’ve seen…

Why you should master this powerful influencing tool

Photo by Cytonn Photography on Unsplash

The Window to the Soul

Can you remember a time when you met someone for the first time, introduced yourself, shook their hand, looked them in the eye, and they didn’t return the eye contact? How did that feel? If you can remember that scenario happening it was probably awkward and left you feeling like you weren’t sure if you could trust the other person. If you don’t remember a situation like this it’s because the interaction just wasn’t very memorable. Either way, eye contact or lack of it works the same in public speaking.

One of the most common things people struggle with when…

The power of congruence in public speaking

Photo by Jelleke Vanooteghem on Unsplash

Verbal vs Nonverbal

I recently attended a presentation where the speaker started almost every important statement with the words “I think.” He also used phrases like “kind of” several times throughout his presentation with a “basically” and “obviously” thrown in now and then for good measure. He established a good presence with his body language and tone but his presentation didn’t land well with me. His message fell flat and I wasn’t compelled to do anything when he’d finished. …

How I found perspective in his final story

Photo by Lightscape on Unsplash

His Legacy

A close friend of mine passed away recently. He’s the only friend from college I still had a strong relationship with.

He was so talented and I secretly envied him in so many ways. I respected him as an actor, director, businessman, writer, and most significantly, as a husband and father. I appreciated his drive and fearlessness as an entrepreneur and I admired his ability to set priorities and put his family first.

He loved his family beyond my ability to describe it. He was infinitely proud of his two sons and I could see in his eyes the crazy…

3 tips for effective virtual presentations

Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

As we all experience various levels of mandated or self-imposed quarantines, it’s becoming more apparent that communicating virtually is our new reality. Most people are working from home and any meetings, presentations, or pitches are being delivered through some virtual platform. To make things worse, as we try to adapt to this new way of working and communicating we have news and information flying at us from all angles non-stop.

The good news is, you’re doing great! You’re still here and you have the means to communicate through the amazing technology we all have access to. We’ve all experienced virtual…

How to maximize the impact of your presentation

What’s Your Problem?

I’ve coached public speaking skills for a long time and though delivering an engaging presentation is challenging for many, I’ve found the bigger problem people have is structuring a compelling story.

Most people see a presentation as the information they need to share. The problem is, the information we need to share, in many cases, is boring. In order for your audience to receive your message in the most impactful way, it’s imperative to transform it into a story they can relate to. The first thing your story needs is a powerful opening.

Think about any movie you’ve enjoyed. …

What do they need to hear?

Photo by Miguel Henriques on Unsplash

What Do I Want to Say?

How many times have you sat down to start preparing for a presentation, opened your favorite slide creation tool, and thought: “What do I want to say?”

The fact is, nobody cares what you want to say. I know that sounds harsh but it’s true, even if people don’t realize they feel that way. We’re all naturally wired to care about our own needs. What you want to say is important but if it doesn’t make sense to your audience, your change-inspiring message will never be heard. To ensure they understand and relate to your message you must know who…

The foundation of a great presentation

Photo by Andrew Measham on Unsplash

The Foundation

I vividly remember standing in a room in front of some important stakeholders. I needed them to buy-in to my project in order to get the budget approved to continue our work. I was half-way through my presentation when I felt the sinking sensation of disinterest from this highly influential audience piercing through me. My palms were sweating, anxiety started to build, and I realized at that moment they weren’t feeling the passion for my project I needed them to feel.

As I finished my presentation, I knew I hadn’t hit the mark. There were no questions and as the…

Think differently about how you prepare your presentations

Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

It Starts With Preparation

The reason most presentations don’t land the way people want them to is not that they weren’t engaging enough with their body language, eye contact, or vocal variety. It’s not because they weren’t confident or skilled enough. It’s most likely because they neglected a crucial part of the process.

Those other things are all important and will be necessary when you’re delivering your presentation, but getting the techniques right and building confidence starts well before you’re standing in the room with your audience. It starts with preparation.

What I’ve found impacts people’s confidence when delivering a presentation more than just…

Take the guilt out of focusing on yourself

Photo by Suhyeon Choi on Unsplash

Where’s Your Focus?

Do you want to have an impact on the world around you and be a champion of positive change? Do you want to be your best self every day and contribute to society in meaningful ways? If the answer to those questions is yes, then don’t let other people or circumstances determine who you are becoming.

Focusing on your own needs can feel selfish when so many people are counting on you.

I see this posted in articles and on social media all the time. I hear it when I coach people. Many people feel guilty when they take time…

Russell Rowe

I’m passionate about helping people become better communicators. Join my community at theroweco.com for tips and insight on becoming a powerful presenter.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store