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Archive for 2012

Thank You Speeches – What the Oscar Acceptance Speeches Can Teach Us about Good Presentations


I did not watch the Oscars last night.  My latent jealousy of never pursuing my promising yet totally imaginary acting career makes it too painful.  But flipping back and forth between The Apprentice and the Oscars, I did pause to see Meryl Streep win for best actress and listen to her acceptance speech.

Watching her acceptance speech made me naturally draw comparisons between a great acceptance speech and a great presentations.  Here’s what I observed from Meryl’s speech that translates to our …

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Take Your Conference Presentation From Lame to Fame: Remember You Are the Chosen One, so Deliver on the Preview

I saw the previews to Up All Night, a new sitcom on NBC, and thought to myself, “That show looks stupid.  I’ll be skipping that one, thank you very much!”


But one night, shortly after it started, I couldn’t find anything else to watch during that particular 30 minute time slot so I grudgingly watched Up All Night.  It was actually a much better show than I thought it would be.  Now I regularly choose it over other shows.


(Yes, I watch too much …

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Breaking the Business Presentation Rules for Better Presentations

I never had a nick name as a kid.  But if I did, it could easily have been “goody two shoes.”


I was by nature a rule follower.  My mom used to joke that she could threaten to spank me and I’d be good for 3 months!


So I empathize with you if you’re that business professional who is thinking, “Gosh, Kelly.  I don’t know that I want to be the first to step away from the ‘normal’ way of doing business presentations.”


Sure, it’s easier to …

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2012 State of the Union Address – What You Can Learn from President Obama to Improve Your Presentation


Despite my aversion to political speeches, I watched President Obama’s 2012 State of the Union address… on YouTube… at this link…


This is the “enhanced” version of the speech posted on the White House YouTube channel.  The “enhanced” version includes the text of the speech as well as presentation slides which came in and out of the speech occasionally.

Based on President Obama’s speech, here are some of the things he did well that the rest of us can learn from.

Get Right to It
There was no blah, blah, blah opening.  After the obligatory welcome message, he started …

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If you could do only one thing to improve your business presentation, what would it be?

What’s In It for Me?

So what’s your presentation about?

I’ve got to show the sales guys how to use a new software.

Why do the sales guys want to learn the new software?


Is it required of their job?


What does the new software do?

It’s the software we’re going to use to track sales in the pipeline.

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Kelly Vandever’s Favorite Presentation Related Videos on YouTube

They Said It So Well
It’s a love-hate relationship for me really.

I love it when someone puts into context an important point about presentations.

I hate it that I didn’t think of it first!


Here are some of my favorite presentation related videos.  I hope you laugh and learn from these talented others!

Busting the Mehrabian Myth
by Creativity Works

Life After Death by PowerPoint
by Don McMillan

Presentation Skills Coaching funny
by Oratium

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If Your New Year’s Resolution Contains Anything about Overcoming the Fear of Public Speaking – THEN SPEAK IN FRONT OF PEOPLE!

People like myself who join Navy ROTC halfway through our college years enter a six-weeks long indoctrination program called the Naval Science Institute in Newport, Rhode Island.  Included in the program is the study of Naval warfare, learning basic military protocols and of course, physical training – PT for short.  Our days began with PT on a grassy knoll along the waterfront.  Nice.

Not so nice was that we shared the grassy knoll with hundreds Canadian geese.  The geese didn’t just use the grassy knoll as a hangout.  They used it for what we in the Navy call a head.  You civilians call it a bathroom.

If …

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