Professional Communication and Presentation Class Commandments

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Today, a really strong team of students put together and presented a “Mini Discussion” about the TED Commandments, why these presentation rules are important, and how those rules apply to all presenters.

To conclude their presentation, the group asked us to think about our own class commandments for Professional Communication and Presentation.  Here are my favorite 5 of the 10:

Thou shalt respect the audience.

Thou shalt “get naked” with delivery.

Thou shalt interact.

Thou shalt not rely on PowerPoint slides.

Thou shalt always be prepared.

Some of the commandments we wrote on the board are our silly class inside jokes, but most of our tips are incredibly helpful for communicating and presenting effectively.

Here is the Mini Discussion team comprised of Fiifi, Kim, Emily, and Joe posting with the Class Commandments:

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And here is the rest of my wonderful class courtesy of a panoramic photo I had no idea my phone was capable of capturing:

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What great things have your students been up to lately?

Communication Research Projects

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For the past few weeks, as opposed to writing posts for my blog, I’ve been focusing exclusively on my academic writing in the field of communication.  In my Communication and Conflict course, as I mentioned earlier this month, I began a research project proposal.  I am planning on turning this proposal into my thesis.  My focus is female leadership and the identity conflict that often arises between “female” and “leader.”  While I am still nailing down my theoretical lens and methods, I confirmed my thesis chair and an additional committee member.  In August, I am excited to invite my third committee member on board and to present my finalized research project proposal to the entire team.  Once my proposal has been approved, I can begin my work.

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Additionally, I am thrilled to report that I began collaborating with a classmate on a food-related research project based on the “cooking as inquiry” method.  We asked a professor to co-author this qualitative study with us.

I am waiting to hear back from NCTE’s 4Cs and the Florida Communication Association to see if my conference proposals have been accepted for presentation.  I will keep you posted!

Last, but not least, I have a conference call scheduled early next week with a PhD student at my top choice school.  After scouring the program’s website and reading up on the faculty and their publications, I am excited about the possibility of attending this specific doctoral program.  I plan to apply in late 2015 with a fingers-crossed start date of August 2016.

What kind of researching, reading, and writing have you been doing lately?

Clearly Influential Podcast Series

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This week, I scheduled an interview to speak with Sandy Donovan at Clearly Influential for her podcast series.  I am really excited to speak with Sandy since she is a communication scholar and since she has earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in my field of study.

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Sandy and I will be talking about my research interests, about communication in general, and practical application of communication best practices.  This will be a great interview if you are interested in learning more about the research side of the communication field in addition to practical application of that research.

If you haven’t checked out Clearly Influential, you can visit Sandy’s website here.

Have you been listening to any great podcasts this week?  What podcasts do you regularly tune in for?

Currently Reading…

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Although it’s only the 9th of June, this month has been filled with new classes to teach, a Junior League leadership training and many meetings to kick off the new League year, a course reboot for Professional Communication and Presentation, and my summer class at UCF on Communication and Conflict among about a dozen other things.  Fortunately, this Conflict class comes at a perfect time, as I’ve finally decided on a direction for my graduate thesis.  I’m spending this summer writing a research paper proposal in Conflict, and this proposal will transform into my thesis under the direction of my advisor and my committee.

My thesis is about female leadership and the challenges women face when their “female” identity conflicts with their “leader” identity.  I am still in the beginning stages of the thesis process, so I checked out some library books to help me find my direction…

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Sheryl Sandberg and Brene Brown’s books were obvious choices after watching their TED presentations and hearing about them in the news.  I stumbled upon How Remarkable Women Lead by Barsh and Cranston as well as Why The Best Man For The Job Is A Woman by Esther Wachs Book simply because of their titles.  I have one book coming in from Cocoa through inter-library loan and a few books waiting for me on the shelves at the UCF library.

Would you suggest any additional books I might read as I develop the direction for my thesis on women, leadership, and communication?

The Key to Credibility is…

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Alex Rister:

Another entry on Prezi’s Top 100 Presentation Resources list is my superteacher partner in crime, Chiara Ojeda of Tweak Your Slides. Check out this post she wrote yesterday on empathy using two great videos, one animating Brene Brown’s work…

Originally posted on Tweak Your Slides:

Empathy! Yep, that’s right–not credentials, expertise, title, or extensive research. The key to achieving strong credibility with your audience is to empathize with them. Why is this? Because, empathizing with the audience helps speakers achieve the type of true credibility Aristotle describes in Rhetoric:

“We believe good men more fully and more readily than others: this is true generally whatever the question is, and absolutely true where exact certainty is impossible and opinions are divided. . . his character may almost be called the most effective means of persuasion he possesses.” Aristotle, Rhetoric

True credibility comes from a person who is “good,” a person of good character. Empathy, the ability to become your audience’s needs, wants, values, fears, and desires, is key to conveying good character. A presenter who can empathize with his or her audience is truthful–no one likes to be lied to; a presenter who is empathetic conveys…

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Prezi’s Top 100 Presentation Resources

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I am excited to announce that Creating Communication was named one of Prezi’s Top 100 Presentation Resources!  Check out their list: “The #PreziTop100 Online Resources Every Presenter Should See.”

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Don’t forget to answer this week’s Wednesday Challenge with YOUR favorite online presentation resource!  You can also leave a comment here.

Wednesday Challenge: Favorite Presentation Resource

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On Wednesdays, I am facilitating a brand new audience-centered series called The Wednesday Challenge.  I’ll provide a prompt, and you leave a response in the “Comments” section.  I’ll share the best comment along with a new prompt the following Wednesday.

Last week, I asked you to tell me about your favorite TED Talk and why that particular presentation resonated with you.  Chiara Ojeda of Tweak Your Slides responded:

“My favorite TED talk (man this is actually really hard!) has to be Lisa Kristine’s ‘Photos that bear witness to modern slavery.’ When I first watched this talk I was floored–Lisa’s hauntingly beautiful imagery, richly detailed verbal imagery, superb poise, and moving call to action changed my perception of her subject and also taught me a few important lessons about crafting a message that sticks. Lisa uses her story, empathy towards her subjects, and concrete details/images to imprint the importance of bringing light to the issue of modern slavery on her audience. Such a beautiful talk!”

Lisa Kristine’s TED Talk is definitely one of my favorites.  Check out a previous Creating Communication post called “Top Ten TED Talks Delivered By Women” to learn more about my favorite presentations by women at TED.

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This week’s Wednesday Challenge is an activity AND a discussion:

Post a link to your favorite online resource for learning about public speaking and presentation.  Tell me why this resource is so good.

I’ll share one of your responses next week.