Presentation & Public Speaking Skills Archives - The Pickering Group

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Handling questions like a pro when presenting

One of the questions we’re asked most often is how to handle, well, questions. And we have answers! A Q&A can seem nervewracking, but generally if you know your subject it can be the most engaging and convincing part of your presentation. Imagine it’s quiz night, but all the questions are on your specialist topic. You win the bar tab, your table is cheering, there’s karaoke later, life is beautiful. This could be you at work too. How? Glad you asked.

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Is Persuasion a Dirty Word?

A few weeks back I had an interesting discussion with a long-standing client. She was getting some push back from a member of her team around her idea of wanting to put them through our Secrets of Influence and Persuasion programme. His concern was the perceived ‘ick factor’ of persuasive speaking skills. He was worried they would turn from careful, considered experts into Donald Trump!

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Should you use memes in presentations? Take the test.

What is a meme? We’re glad you asked. It’s a unit of social currency, a piece of concentrated information that spreads around a group. It’s an in-joke, like what we all know about Ian since the conference last year.

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Comparison: The Thief of Joy

03.06.20 It’s easy to fall into the trap of comparison when it comes to our public speaking.  We see a compelling speaker and wonder if we can ever rise to those standards.

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Gif of Sean Connery as James Bond lighting a cigarette - with the text Bond. James Bond.

Why repetition is your friend when presenting

11/02/20. We live in a world that celebrates novelty, a world in which repetition is seen as a bit of a faux pas. But repetition is useful in so many ways. As a rhetorical device it can be an effective way to make our public speaking memorable. It’s also a key component of useful rehearsal, and it’s the basis of deliberately creating new positive habits.

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Glossophobia, Alektorophobia and more...

You’ve heard it a million times: the number one human phobia is Glossophobia, the fear of public speaking. It seems like nonsense, doesn’t it? That speaking in public could be more terrifying to more people than, say, death, or being stuck in a lift with Kanye West. But consider the consequences.

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Are your PowerPoint's poisoning us?

It seemed like the best idea ever: liven up business presentations with a slide show. Pictures! Graphs! A weird 80s Dr Who-style spiral dissolve vortex! Surely visual aids would turn boring meetings into a mashup of Mad Men and a game of laser tag.

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On spontaneous pleonasms and other devices

Riddle time! What sounds like a disease, but makes people want to get closer to you? Literally any rhetorical device. Many can make your written and spoken language more engaging, some we should be wary of, and some we should avoid.

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Is Public Speaking Anxiety A Form Of Selfishness?

21/02/20. Take a look at this video. It comes not from the world of presentation training, but from Westeros. Actor Jonathan Pryce (The High Sparrow in Game of Thrones) somewhat bluntly describes stage fright as selfishness. Ouch. That’s so cold it actually feels like winter is coming. Jonathan suggests your focus should be on the audience and what they’re getting out of the encounter, not yourself and how you’re performing, and we think he’s onto something.

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How to Improve Your Business Presentation Skills

Maybe you’ve asked yourself, what exactly is a Business Presenter? Then, as your phone sends you a cheerful alert about tomorrow’s report meeting, you realise. Oh no. It’s me, isn’t it?

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