Original Performance

In my element helping you be in yours

Tell us what life has taught you #Sketchnotes

There’s nothing new under the sun

Dale Carnegie’s ‘Effective Public Speaking’ contains a lot of insights still relevant today.

My #Sketchnote summary is attached – and having trained hundreds of people in various aspects of presentation skills I still found it interesting. Some examples include:

Fear prevents people from doing it

Practice reduces fear

Be your authentic self and reflect on what life has taught you, and connect this to what is relevant for the audience.

Identifying insights from particular incidents and relating the story with enthusiasm, a sense of suspense and with vivid details.

The Gandalf of presentations sharing his magic. 


Warning – advice from Dilbert cartoonist 

Don’t read the attached #sketchnote of ‘How to fail at almost everything and still win big’ by Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame), unless you want to live dangerously and follow a cartoonists advice. 

(Disclosure: Scott suggests cartoonist advice almost never ends well)

Having listened to Scotts advice on writing I decided to read his book. As you might suspect it has humour, a quirky worldview and takes unexpected twists.

Interesting insights are combined with autobiographical details from a persuasive writer with training as a hypnotist, who has an investment portfolio, and a history of starting businesses all while writing the juggernaut that is Dilbert. 

Attached are my #sketchnotes. 

Stop ‘brain golfing’ – read this

Lessons on being succinct, engaging readers, and being humorous from Dilbert author – Scott Adams – #sketchnotes

(Headline following his guidelines)

If in doubt improvise

My #Sketchnotes of @davemorrisisa Tedx Victoria talk. Things often go wrong, developing our skills to improvise, laugh at failure, create stories, build together with others and have fun seems like a good set of options. 

If in doubt…improvise. See also Jugaad!

A future with a smile in it…

People don’t buy your product they buy you

Cian Mcloughlin  

This week I heard stories from amazing people of escaping through the iron curtain, of setting up businesses in the Middle East, of running for election, of the Berlin Wall and what it meant to look at it, without being able to pass, of going to Mombasa aged 16 to teach. Thanks to everyone who shared their stories. 

So many people have amazing stories to tell, and their stories are incredibly memorable and incredibly different. 

Which would you rather listen to – someone with 30 PowerPoint slides all about features and functions or a real human with a real story, especially if that story shows you how amazing all people are including you, or if you are talking to someone who shows you how you can have a future with a smile in it. 

I know which I prefer. What would you prefer?

Slide:ology by Nancy Duarte – My #Sketchnotes

“Protect your audience. If you have to use bullets, use them sparingly”

A classic on presentation design for a reason – these are my ‘Sketchnotes’

Balancing candour and courtesy..#sketchnote

Thanks to Franck Alfero for the book recommendation – Talk Lean –

Balance honesty and courtesy to have better conversations. 

Some nice insights here on how to do it. Based on the work of Philippe De Lapoyade and his company interactifs

Never argue with fools…..

Onlookers might not be able to tell the difference.

Mark Train had some amusing gems.

Worth bearing in mind in the virtual world as well as the real world.

Ready, Fire, Aim…..a common problem

Have you ever seen an email chain, where one person starts it with a question and copies people on it?  Then lot’s of the people on the chain start to jump in, and work on the initial question, without asking, is this the right question to ask, or is this the right way to talk about it?

This is a common ready, fire, aim problem……sometimes the email is the wrong format for the conversation, or worse again, working on the wrong question.

A colleague I worked with years ago described the way he saw it working…..

…some boss at the top freaks out about something,

…they put the boot down on someone to fix it, who in turn does the same, who in turn does the same, who in turn does the same,

…..and it all culminates in someone walking up to me telling me to do something……

… I do it, and then go back to doing what I was doing anyway..

…..I never really know what the fuss is about……

Variations on this theme occur in most organizations at least some of the time.  Adding up the wasted minutes of all the contributors to these ready, fire, aim problems, would make for sobering reading in terms of productivity.

Urgent thinking is not the most efficient thinking.  This is where leadership really kicks in.  A sense of urgency is a good thing for a leader to have, but even more important is the sense of direction.  When you notice people reacting, or feeling a sense of urgency, stop and think, even for a second, to see if what is happening really makes sense.

As John C. Maxwell describes it:

“If you don’t change the direction you are going, then you’re likely to end up where you’re heading…”

Ask yourself.

Is this really urgent?

Is this shooting in the right direction?

Are we working on the right questions?

Is this the best format for this question to be discussed?

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