Congratulations! You’ve been chosen (or drafted) to deliver a speech. Don’t panic. Because executive speech coach Patricia Fripp is here to answer your questions. Here is everything you need to know about preparing your speech or presentation: Preparing Your Speech What Do I Talk About? Begin by asking yourself these three questions: Who is my […]

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With hundreds of millions now working from home and communicating through Zoom, you have an advantage when you understand how to make Zoom work for you. Patricia Fripp and Director of Client Experience for FrippVT, Paul Griffin team up to share their best practices and technical expertise to help you get the most from Zoom:

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Your presentation can be powerful and persuasive when you connect with your audience both intellectually and emotionally. Eye contact is essential to creating an emotional connection with an audience of any size. This is true whether you’re speaking one-on-one or delivering a formal presentation from the stage. Eye contact gives you an edge in business. […]

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If you are on the phone, a webinar, or in person, and you have a few minutes with the executive, what do you say to keep on track and be professional? Here is an invaluable framework. Adapt it to your situation, and boost your confidence and credibility. Imagine that you have a satisfied client company […]

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Second, a pause provides dramatic interest for your audience. Of course, if you’re really nervous you have your own drama taking place, whether your audience knows it or not. But, a moment unspoken provides the silent drumroll to announce your next important point.

Third, a pause helps your audience to follow you better—they become better listeners. And, as they become more attentive, you relax and so do they. Your audience does not want to be nervous on your behalf.

I recently delivered a workshop at the American Payroll Association’s Annual Congress (May 2011) titled, “Effective Business Communications: On Paper, Online, and On Your Feet.” While at the conference, I also enjoyed a presentation called “Advanced Career-Building Speaking Skills”conducted by professional presentation skills trainer and speech coach, Patricia Fripp. Fripp’s delivery and timing served as an excellent model. She made exceptional use of the pause. As an energetic presenter it helped to slow her down, and the audience could absorb what she was saying. In effect, it’s a “listening cue,” providing you, the audience, a signal to take note of what’s about to be said.

To demonstrate the power of the pause, Fripp asked one of the audience members to come forward. Within five minutes, the volunteer had added pauses between the three major points and just before the conclusion of the persuasive argument she was preparing for senior management. The presentation did something else to improve her delivery: Fripp counseled her to make eye contact with a different member of the audience—near, middle, and far—to accompany each of the pauses. The results were dramatic.

According to Fripp, “Few sales presentations have enough pauses. Good music and good communication both contain changes of pace, pauses, and full rests. This is when listeners think about important points you’ve just made. If you rush on at full speed to crowd in as much information as possible, chances are you’ve left your prospects back at the station. Give them enough time to ask a question or even time to think over what has been said. Pauses allow pondering and understanding.”

To help prepare for your public speaking opportunity, you can write a narrative to help you rehearse. It helps to identify the places in your presentation where a pause will come naturally, just as you might accent a word or phrase for other additional emphasis.

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The Secret of Connecting to Your Audience When your message is memorable, your communication clear, and your presentation powerful, you will position yourself for greater success. If you want to excel as a public speaker you must make an emotional connection with your audience, regardless of your subject, setting, or message. The most powerful communication […]

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As an executive speech coach I often talk about the importance of connecting with your audience, both intellectually and emotionally. Fundamental to connecting with your audience is, building your presentation around a strong structure, telling vivid and authentic stories, and utilizing body language that supports your message. My friend and fellow presentation skills expert, Craig […]

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