Frequently Asked Questions

 
 

I LIKE TO SPEAK EXTEMPORANEOUSLY. USING A SCRIPT MAKES ME A WORSE PRESENTER. HOW WILL A PRESENTATION TEMPLATE HELP ME?

Our presentation template serves as an outline for your talk. Using this template ensures your presentation will have a clear, logical flow that people can easily follow. And, most important, it keeps you on track, especially if you like to speak spontaneously.

I NEED TO GET BETTER AT Q&A. WHEN I’M ASKED A CHALLENGING QUESTION, I FREEZE UP.

When handled well, Q&A can be the most important part of your presentation. It gives you a chance to demonstrate the depth of your knowledge and humanizes the presentation by making a direct connection with an audience member. However, when a question is challenging you need to defuse the tension before answering it. We use a simple 3-step model that helps you phrase your answer in a way that acknowledges the questioner while reinforcing the key points of your answer.

EVERYONE SAYS TO USE STORIES DURING A PRESENTATION, BUT I THINK IT DUMBS THINGS DOWN. WHAT’S THE POINT?

Using stories and analogies during a presentation is a good way to illustrate complex information. Stories and analogies give the audience an intuitive understanding of what you’re trying to explain. They are highly memorable and help you get through to your audience.

I DO A LOT OF PRESENTATIONS, AND PEOPLE ALWAYS TELL ME THAT I’M A GOOD PUBLIC SPEAKER. HOW CAN YOUR COACHING HELP ME?

We work with seasoned speakers in three key ways. First, we help you make an emotional impact on the audience by focusing on what they really care about. Second, we help you hone your key points to ensure your presentation is focused and has a memorable message. Third, we help you connect with your audience by speaking naturally and showing the passion you feel for your topic.

I’M IN A TECHNICAL ROLE AND KNOW MY AREA REALLY WELL. BUT, WHEN I PRESENT, NO ONE SEEMS TO UNDERSTAND ME. HOW DO I GET MY POINTS ACROSS?

Unfortunately, what makes you great at technology won’t make you great at talking about it. Before explaining how your firm’s technology outperforms the rest, you need to initially demonstrate how your technology achieves your customer’s objectives. Once they understand how your product or service helps them, you can move on to highlighting key technical features that accomplish great end results.

I PRESENT TO MY COMPANY’S EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE EVERY WEEK. THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE ARE ON THEIR PHONES THROUGHOUT MY PRESENTATION. HOW DO I GET THEIR ATTENTION?

Presenting to executives can be tough. To get their attention, you need to start with a concise, one-minute summary of what they need to know. You will capture and keep the executives’ attention, because you focus on what is important to them.


OUR SALES TEAM PRESENTS TO INDUSTRY EXPERTS. THE PRESENTATIONS ARE HIGHLY REGULATED, TECHNICAL, AND LENGTHY—WITH SOME PRESENTATIONS LASTING UP TO SIX HOURS. HOW DO YOU WORK WITH TEAMS LIKE OURS?

For high-stakes sales opportunities, we work closely with your team to ensure that you are fully prepared. First, we learn about your offering, customers, competition, and differentiators. Then, over a period of 2 to 3 days, we work side-by-side with you, honing your deck, rehearsing the presentation, and practicing Q&A. You will be confident, credible, and ready to do your best in the sales presentation.

I’M A SUBJECT MATTER EXPERT IN A NEW ROLE THAT REQUIRES ME TO JOIN OUR SALES TEAM AT CLIENT MEETINGS WHERE I EXPLAIN OUR SYSTEM. I ALREADY RECEIVED FEEDBACK ABOUT NEEDING A STRONGER PRESENCE IN THE ROOM. HOW CAN I DO THAT AND NOT SOUND SALESY?

The key to success with your role is to educate, as well as present. To be successful, you need to explain complex concepts in a way that clients will understand. Our speaking skills help you to be clear and engaging as you describe complex information. And, we help you hear what the client is really asking and speak directly to their concerns. You will come across as confident and credible as you build a strong connection with the clients.


WE’VE HAD SEVERAL TYPES OF FEEDBACK TRAINING, AND OUR LEADERS STILL AREN’T GIVING EFFECTIVE FEEDBACK. WHAT MAKES YOUR WORKSHOP DIFFERENT?

Few people wake up in the morning and say, “I can’t wait to give my team feedback today!” Feedback conversations that inspire lasting change start with a mind shift away from feedback as negative criticism and towards feedback as a way to help someone grow. We use a model to open the conversation and an improvisational strategy with touch points to keep you on track. Instead of telling what to do, you will guide by asking probing questions. This multi-step approach broadens perspective and invites the employee to create his or her own solutions that will lead to lasting change.

IN MY ROLE, I DEAL WITH LOTS OF DEMANDS FROM SUPERVISORS AND FROM CLIENTS. HOW DO I GET MY POINT ACROSS IN A WAY THAT PEOPLE WILL HEAR ME?

Managing up is as much an art form as it is a skill. We use a 5-step kick-off model to help you demonstrate your understanding of others’ needs, all while asserting your point of view and affirming a mutual goal. This approach encourages an open dialogue and promotes a high-level of collaboration.  

WE HAVE BEEN RUNNING EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE TRAINING SESSIONS FOR A WHILE, AND WE NEED A FRESH APPROACH. CAN YOU REALLY TEACH SOMEONE TO BE MORE EMOTIONALLY INTELLIGENT?

When someone is emotionally intelligent, everyone knows it. When they’re not, everyone knows it. Research shows that we do indeed have the capacity to increase our emotional intelligence. Our workshops guide you through experiential activities to gain self-awareness, learn how to manage emotions during stressful situations and build harmonious relationships. Through hands-on exercises, you learn specific ways to practice and enhance your emotional intelligence.

We run leadership off-sites a few times a year. Mostly the programs barely scratch the surface of what people need to learn. How are your programs different?

Leadership programs have significantly changed in the last few years. We know effective learning happens through direct experience. We customize our workshops by incorporating real workplace situations into the exercises to make the programs relevant and immediately actionable. The high-energy learning environment encourages new ways of thinking and uses practical tools to practice new skills. On top of that, at the end of the workshop each participant creates an action plan, is assigned a peer coach, and meets with their supervisor for input and accountability.



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Do you ever coach people on improving their interpersonal skills and how best to advocate with diplomacy?

Of all the areas of interpersonal skills, advocating with diplomacy is one of the most difficult to master. To gain influence in these highly consequential conversations, you need to do two things really well: 1) Keep your cool when emotions are running high and 2) assert your position as you de-escalate tension by demonstrating your understanding of the other person’s point of view. With coaching, you can identify your emotional triggers and apply stress management techniques to keep your feelings in check. Then you learn a simple model to acknowledge the other person’s perspective as you advocate for your position. This approach encourages an open dialogue, and promotes a high-level of collaboration that leads to consensus.  



Can a tiger really change their stripes? Does coaching ever really change anyone?

Coaching doesn’t change a person into someone else. What coaching does is help you be the best version of yourself. We don’t always know why our behavior doesn’t get the results we intended. When we respond to a situation before thinking it through, it can cause a lot of friction, low productivity, low morale, or, worse, loss of key talent. With coaching you gain awareness of how your thoughts and feelings affect you, and you learn more effective ways to interact with others that build strong relationships, and a high-level of motivation and commitment.