Master Your Message Blog

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audience-webNever in history have we been bombarded on a daily basis with so much information. Much of it comes in the form of distractions.

You know what I’m talking about: Emails, cell phones, texting; we’re bounced around all day long between one snippet of information and another.

Little work of any import happens in such an environment. But that’s reality for most of the workday. And it’s tiring. I don’t have to tell you that.

We’re bombarded with snippets of information hourly.

It’s no different in a presentation situation. You may think you have the attention of a cohesive group in an “out-of-the-line-of-fire” conference room, but it’s rarely “undivided.” Minds don’t automatically shut themselves off from outside issues when the eyes are focused on a lectern.

In order to have an impact, you have to capture the imagination. You must do it in a way that not only “sticks,” but lodges your message between the appropriate grey cells and resonates for a much longer period than the presentation itself (at the very least)!

Here are some basic principles to keep in mind when you create your next important presentation. Read More …

Close-up shot of roaring lionBusinesspeople are mounting more and more presentations every year. Surveys tell us this.

They also tell us that audiences know … with utmost certainty … that 90% of what they’re going to be subjected to is downright boring … served on a thick foundation of PowerPoint crap—in other words, designed to suck any remaining energy out of an otherwise pleasant, uplifting day.

Here’s a fact: The number one thing audiences hate is for presenters to stand in front of them and read their text-packed, full sentence slides.

So don’t do it. Roar like a lion!

If it’s a report, email it to your audience and save you and them a whole lot of pain.

 I’ll never forget a morning a few years back in Read More …

NOTE: This terrific article comes from Judy Carter and gives a great example of why it’s so important to start any presentation, email, or other persuasive business communication with a problem …
There’s a secret to have your resume rise to the top of a job pile. It’s the same technique that makes a comedy club audience laugh, or that gets everyone at your next meeting to stop texting and start listening to you. You get people’s attention by making your cover letter, your first joke, or your opening remarks about THEM.
 
I posted a job on Craigslist and LinkedIn recently — and I was immediately swamped with over 100 applicants.
 
I deleted some of the applications as soon as I read them. Read More …

MH1633I delivered a workshop on the weekend that was about crafting a persuasive message for video—more specifically, a short, sales-related, direct appeal on camera. The participants were working through the first two steps in the process and having a challenging time.

Why?

Because we’re not often fixated on our audience and their pain. But, for video, you have to be. In fact, for any persuasive presentation, you have to be. But video … it’s critical.

That’s because you have to talk through the camera to that person. And, if you don’t have a really good image in your mind of who that person is, you won’t be personal enough; you won’t connect with your eyes; you won’t be passionate; you won’t be persuasive.

You have Read More …

Relator – A Friend Forever

 SELF matrix relator personality styleYour message should be tweaked based on who your audience is. If you’re delivering a presentation to a marketing group, it’s got to be positioned differently than if you’re delivering to a room of engineers. And your style of delivery should change—for maximum impact.

How? It depends on your audience’s personality style.

If you tend to speak to groups related to the health care field or other public services, you’re used to relators. Relators are fabulous audiences. They’re warm and caring, but can be more easily offended than others.

Relators always have time to hear about problems and are genuinely interested in helping you find a solution. However, drivers tend to lose patience with them. You see, drivers are Read More …

Analyst – Everything in Its Place 

Analyst personality style on SELF matrix

Your message should be tweaked based on who your audience is. If you’re delivering a presentation to a marketing group, it’s got to be positioned differently than if you’re delivering to a room of engineers. And your style of delivery should change—for maximum impact.

How? It depends on your audience’s personality style.

Analysts are the logical thinkers of the group. They like routine. They’re conservative, bottom-line-minded, and meticulous. Their offices are generally the most pristine, organized places on earth.

If you have them as your audience, you’d better have done your homework! And if you’re handing out evaluation forms, you’d better have a thick skin. Analysts like everything to be perfect, organized, and logical. They’ll let you know Read More …

Initiator – A Gift for the Gab 

SELF initiator personality style

Your message should be tweaked based on who your audience is. If you’re delivering a presentation to a marketing group, it’s got to be positioned differently than if you’re delivering to a room of engineers. And your style of delivery should change—for maximum impact.

How? It depends on your audience’s personality style. 

An audience of initiators are the most fun audience you’ll ever have. They’re outgoing, have great imaginations, and are always up for a good time. They’re the life of the party.

Then again, if you’re a member of the opposite personality style group, you might not think so. You might think of them as loud or pushy, a bit arrogant, maybe, and somewhat superficial – Read More …

The Driver Personality Style – A Manager, Perhaps Your Boss 

SELF Personality Style - the driverYour message should be tweaked based on who your audience is. If you’re delivering a presentation to a marketing group, it’s got to be positioned differently than if you’re delivering to a room of engineers. And your style of delivery should change—for maximum impact.

How? It depends on your audience’s personality style.

I’m going to use the descriptive name, “Driver,” for this personality style. This is one of the four basic styles. These are people that both need to direct (at the top of the matrix) and “need people less.” In other words, they don’t have a burning need to be surrounded by others.

Drivers: Like to be in control, need people less.

Having Read More …

SELF Personality Style Matrix

There are four basic personality styles. Generally, people can be classified as one of the four. That said, keep in mind that most people have qualities from more than just one. You tend to be dominant in the traits of one style over the others. So, it’s a relative thing – and in most cases, should be used for illustrative purposes only.

I’m also exaggerating to some degree to help contrast the different styles.

I’ve provided the SELF matrix to help you get a feeling for how these traits are delineated. 

There are four personality extremes identified on the chart. At the top of the centre vertical line is the trait of “more need to direct.” These are people who need to be in charge. Read More …

If you’ve been watching the ups and downs of the US presidential race, and been paying attention to the media pundits, you’ve no doubt heard the discussions in recent days about “style versus substance.” This is in direct relation to the television debate between President Barak Obama and Governor Mitt Romney.

The argument is over whether it’s more effective to focus on the substance of your presentation, rather than how you deliver it – your presentation “style.” What’s the most effective means of making your point and winning over your audience?

The answer to this question may rest within the work of Albert Mehrabian, known to most presentation coaches, but misquoted (in my experience) as often as his work is cited.

The Obama/Romney Read More …