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Archive for the ‘gestures’

Assuming Can Be Good

If you’ve ever done a tele-presentation (or something similar) during which technology prohibits you from getting feedback from your audience, you may have found yourself doubting your effectiveness. You may have even started feeling like the presentation is going horribly. I know that’s how I felt during my first tele-presentation!

The fact of the matter is that the presentation like this is set up to force you to make an assumption about how it’s going. You can’t get immediate feedback. Since you have to make an assumption, you might as well assume that it’s going well. When you make that assumption, you have more energy and exude more of your natural personality. You also gesture more frequently, which adds more inflection to your voice! So go ahead and make that assumption; I promise that when you “assume” you don’t always make an “ass out of u and me.”

Adding PassionTakes Practice

It’s one of my favorite times of the year – The National Football League is getting ready for it’s season. At the end of a disappointing season last year, Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Wade Phillips vowed that he would change his approach and be less passive. He’s apparently also trying to be more passionate. During this year’s “State of the Team” speech, Phillips said, “It’s football time” and then slapped the table twice.

While I applaud Phillips’ attempts at being more passionate, his table slapping was mis-timed and had no effect on his vocal intonation.  The effect was that he sounded artificial and insincere in his attempt to be more passionate; his gesture of table slapping was an afterthought. Many of the local sports talk show hosts here in Dallas have been poking fun at Phillips weak attempt at emphasis.

This is a good lesson for anyone who delivers presentations. If you want to be more passionate when presenting, your gestures should precede the words you want to emphasize and you should practice your delivery, instead of just winging it!