Day: March 9, 2012

Thanks, Garr: Appreciate what’s important

When I read the headline of Garr Reynold’s post, Slowing down to appreciate what’s important, I expected to read a Zen-inspired post about leaving extraneous material out of your presentations.

I read something even more important.

Most of my kids are all grown and off on their own now, except for our special needs daughter and our son who graciously stays around to help take care of her. Garr is just beginning with his children, and he has his priorities straight. He’s a world-known expert in presentation design and other communication areas, and his passion for that remains, but I wholeheartedly confirm that he would regret not putting the children first.

It doesn’t much matter if you can communicate effectively unless you have something to communicate about, and significant people to communicate with.

Garr, you don’t know me from any of the other 7 billion people on earth, but congratulations on your newest additon, and commendations on having the good sense to share the toast. Whether in presentations or in life, it really is about focusing on what’s important.

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Narrow your focus and go deeper

I'll Bring the Hot Dogs!

I once had a student who was stuck. She was supposed to speak in a speech round starting on Friday, and she came to me on Wednesday complaining that she couldn’t get started. She had come up with about a minute’s worth of material.

“What are you trying to develop a topic on?” I asked.

“The history of the United States,” she said. Continue reading

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