Blog list ...

Maximise your stage presence: a word in your ear

Ever heard of Professor Mehrabian? Some of us may have been on courses that mention his work. Mehrabian's research shows that 55 percent of our communication is visual - our facial expressions, 38 percent our tone and only 7 percent connected to the words we speak. Mehrabian was as much talking about consistency and congruence of message as he was outlining impact of style. Our need for great visual impact along with positive tone is often used as the base for building up our stage presence in the workplace, and why not? Work on these factors is bound to bring benefit.

For the moment though, I would like to focus on the 'words' element.

read more

Great networking skills - for the time we need them

'It’s not what you know it’s who you know.'

I first heard that phrase from my Nan. I had no idea what it meant as I was under 10 years old, and I don’t think she knew what she meant either. But it does roll sweetly off the tongue, doesn’t it?

I recently put a little mind experiment to a group of middle managers in a service industry. Scenario 1, you know the client a little because you mail monthly reports and he/she meets with you once a quarter and you discuss how it is all going. Scenario 2, you know the client well because he/she talks to you weekly and you send a couple of your team to their office monthly as well as going yourself at every 3 or 4  weeks.

read more

How to maximise your stage presence: physicality

Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?” (Abraham)

‘Whoops! Sorry “I do bite my thumb, sir”… but it’s just a habit of mine, when I’m thinking!’ (Sampson)

As I’m pondering over a production plan this morning I am biting my nails. Why?! Anyone watching me would assume I’m either stressed or bored, right? And I’m not. I’m merely concentrating and thinking. It’s my thinking habit!

Many of us develop little habits over time that we may not be aware of.  It’s human nature. Some of us may unconsciously bite our nails when listening on the phone. We may clasp our hands together in a team briefing. Perhaps we constantly clear our throat before we speak in meetings. Maybe we frequently sniff even when we have no cold.

read more

Making blended learning work

Much has been made in recent times of the need to provide blended training solutions. The 'good old days' of simply moving a group of managers off to a hotel for a couple of weeks and so ticking the box for training, seem to be thankfully past. The message of 'blended' is appropriateness and cost effectiveness, and that is a definite step in the right direction.

But what does an effective blended learning solution actually look like? For many businesses it is perhaps a case of a pre-course questionnaire followed by a classroom session, or perhaps a pre or post-course e-learning module. That is a good start, but a true blended approach can be very powerful. However, it needs a little thinking through.

read more

Brand You: Focus on meetings improvement

Today, there is a lot of emphasis on personal networking and developing the right relationships. Rightly so, as this is all part of developing your own personal brand. In this blog I thought it may be worth considering some personal brand development tactics, designed to manage the way others see you in the workplace.

Our challenge in the work place is that we not only want a reputation of being approachable, we want to be known as someone who can get things done. This way we appeal to colleagues and managers alike, and enhance our career prospects. Traditionally you probably know people that are good at one or the other of these. They are either really cool and supportive to work with, or voraciously pushing for work to be completed, often alienating others. But there is middle ground where you can develop the Brand You as a ‘collaborative achiever’. Someone who makes sure things get done, through others.

read more

High impact team events for our organisations

We have all seen it many times. Everyone is present in body, but we haven’t necessarily got their full attention or commitment.

Running powerful team events can be a game changer for the business, and every manager aspires to hold team events which deliver committed and ongoing change. From a board strategy meeting right through to a local ideas group, the aspiration is always that everyone attending offers their full intellectual capability to help solve problems, identify opportunities, and build solutions.

But hand on heart how often does this happen? How often do we run high impact team events which deliver well, but not quite as well as they could? What is it that separates great team events from average ones?

read more

Maximise your stage presence at work

  ‘The only limit to your impact is your imagination and your commitment.' 

Tony Robbins

It is pretty simple to understand, but challenging to apply: to maximise your personal impact, you need to devise ways to maximise your stage presence.

In the business world, of course we do not think about 'stage presence' very much. There is too much to be getting on with, meetings, presentations, projects, client visits, reports, work winning, staff management, budgeting, the list is endless. Why on earth should we think in terms of the actor's world of stage presence?


read more

Planning backup for essential skills

 I hope we are now all thinking of holidays?

Xmas is done, we are all back in the flow, so to keep the motivation going as we get used to being back in the workplace, many of us start to plan where we are going to go for our vacations. Advertisers know this evidently, and our TV screens are flooded with alluring locations.

And do you know, I haven't met one person who travels abroad without insurance? Mark Twain once said: “I've had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”  It seems that we think that way most of the time, except for holidays, when we ensure we are insured up to the eyeballs.

read more

Tips to maximise your stage presence

  ‘If you want to stand out from the crowd, give people a reason not to forget you.' 

Richard Branson

 As a nation we are striving.  Striving for our dream lifestyle? Striving for our dream job? Striving for a healthy and wealthy retirement at 50 or 60 or a house by the sea?

Today, we want it all. We want to be happy in our work, we want to feel we are contributing to the world. We want to be able to travel, have time to spend with our children and the ‘me’ time we keep promising ourselves.  We want a great work/life balance. But with living costs increasing we also want to be successful in our careers in order to fund it all. Whatever our motivation, the reality is that the competition we are faced with in the professional world today is steep. With more people progressing to higher education, more people obtaining University degrees, we are having to compete with a lot of ambitious fish.

read more