Category Archives: Communication

PEEP: How to Persuade when it matters

PEEP to persuadeA couple of years ago I got to attend a lecture by Ray Mohr in which he was teaching a simple technique to help teach us better persuasion skills. I have also seen this technique explained by Andrii Sedniev in his book Magic of Impromptu Speaking: Create a Speech that will be Remembered.

In what instances do you need to persuade or influence somebody? Continue reading


8 Tips on How to Think Fast

Life is a series of presentations in which we are called upon to think fast and deliver a quick response.

“When you are fast…people think you are smart, they think your products are higher quality, they think the management of your organization is higher quality, and they are willing to pay more for your solutions as a result. You can never rest on what you have accomplished in the past, you can only coast in one direction, down.” – Brian Tracey

It is important to keep our lives simple and to think fast on our feet…

But how do you do this?

I found this neat info graphic while reviewing the article:
Let Go, Keep it Simple, Move Quickly: Secrets to Being a Productive Entrepreneur (Infographic)

How to think faster - Anna VitalLets review this further:

  1. say, “Yes, and…” – first principle of improv comedy
    Now typically, we hear the word “but” such as “yes, but”. My friend Karl Steinkopf did a short 7-minute presentation on conjunctions that has given me a new respect for “yes, and”. Yes we want the cake AND we want to eat it. The “yes, and” is for creative problem solvers. The “but” people are not in the think fast mode are not geared up to take advantage of opportunities (or create them.)
  2. relax your jaw, your mouth may talk on its own – body intelligence
    When we are tense, all areas of our body tense up. I know the back of my jaw gets a little sore when I am under a lot of stress. There are some exercises that I go through (even hen waiting my turn to speak) to relax myself. This suggestion makes me think of the times many of us comment on when we are in the flow and don’t always know quite what we said.
  3. if the other side is silent, let the silence be, don’t feel like you have to fill in
    In other words…”Shut up!” It’s okay for there to be silence so that the other person has time to think. Give people time to think, this is especially important in sales. Give those around you time to process the information that you have given them.
  4. repeat something several times while you are thinking
    This could be interpreted in several ways…I don’t know about you, but I play scenarios in my head over and over in preparation for meetings, phone calls or presentations. When working with a client, I may repeat what they have told me while thinking to reinforce what they have said to make sure I understand what they are trying to tell me.
  5. follow the least effort principle
    To me, this speaks to our natural strengths. About 14 years ago, I was asked to present to a congregation for the company that I was with. While on the road to the presentation, I was told how to answer a concern that they had that had not been told to me previously (this was before handy internet on the telephone, so I did not I don’t know about you, but I am n
  6. visualize your knee jerk, now produce a “mind jerk”
    Hmmm…What do you think on this one?
  7. listen to your gut, it thinks faster than your brain
    According to Malcolm Gladwell, in Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking, our decisions and even first impressions occur fast – think instantaneously or in two seconds. Our gut or subconscious mind knows our decision before our conscious minds.
  8. work with the first thought that comes to mind – it is there for a
    This one goes back to Malcolm Gladwell also.In Toastmasters, we have a part of the meeting called Table Topics which works on our impromptu speaking skills. I’ve learned over the years it is best to go with your first instinct and run with it; otherwise, the message gets garbled.In business, it is easy to go into paralysis by analysis. Again, sometimes you just have to go with it.

Bottom line…think fast and see what opportunities arise around you.

Yvonne Bryant, CEO Motus Design GroupReprinted by permission of Yvonne Bryant. Original article: 8 Tips on How to Think Fast

 Yvonne Bryant is a nationally recognized leader and consultant who enjoys speaking and training Executives and Entrepreneurs. She is based in Colorado where she operates her Executive Coaching and Business consulting practice, Motus Design Group, llc.
Yvonne was recognized as the 2011-2012 District 26 Toastmaster of the Year for Colorado, Wyoming and Western Nebraska.

Top Tip to Overcome Failure

Letter B blue boxAlways have a Plan B

As you do more presentations and speeches, you may notice things don’t always go as planned.  Having been in this situation multiple times over the years, I try to have at least one backup plan…ie. Plan B

Some examples have included: Continue reading

[EVENT] Powerful Presentations: How to Own the Stage

Darren LaCroix - 2001 World Champion of Public Speaking

What’s the fastest way for a speaker to go from good to GREAT?

One word: Coaching.

Join us for this special LIVE EVENT!
August 13, 2013 Continue reading

Learn to Speak in Public in 4-8 weeks!

Short Public Speaking Courses

Toastmasters Clubs facilitate short courses in public speaking for adults that run either 4, 6 or 8 weeks. These are known as Speechcraft Programs.

Below you can see information about Speechcraft, how it can benefit you and what to expect at a course.

Speechcraft Program

What can Speechcraft do for you?

Speechcraft programs are short courses in public speaking that are offered by Toastmasters for people not wishing to make the full commitment to join a Club. In a Speechcraft program you will

  • Improve your communication skills so that you are more confident to talk in front of people.
  • Prepare a number of speeches in quick succession.
  • Find that your improved presentation skills will win you the respect and admiration of your colleagues.
  • Benefit because your participation in Speechcraft will increase your management potential.

How can Speechcraft meet your needs?

Speechcraft can help you because;

  • Speechcraft is a program designed for beginners in public speaking.
  • The hands-on program provides the “how-to” and the practical experience so critical to progress.
  • The Speechcraft program is cost effective as volunteers who are training to be better communicators provide the course.
  • An atmosphere of professional camaraderie makes each course a unique learning environment dedicated to personal improvement.
  • The program can be tailored to meet your personal objectives.

How does the Program work?

The Speechcraft program exposes each participant to a wide range of communication experiences.

  • Each participant receives a Toastmasters Speechcraft Handbook plus a range of other materials. These provide valuable reference material after the program is finished.
  • The initial prepared speeches are designed with the novice speaker in mind. You need no experience.
  • A variety of assigned short speeches help participants develop competency.
  • During each meeting a short impromptu speaking session is conducted to help participants learn to think on their feet.
  • After giving a prepared speech, each participant receives a constructive speech evaluation. This process recognises speakers for their strengths and provides valuable guidance on how future presentations may be improved.
  • Upon completion of the basic course you may continue your training at a Toastmasters Club.

When and Where is Speechcraft conducted?

A wide variety of Speechcraft programs are conducted by Toastmasters Clubs throughout Colorado, Wyoming and Western Nebraska each year.

These are offered by Clubs within their local communities as a community service, and charges are usually very reasonable.

A Note for Employers

Speechcraft is high quality training at a price that every firm can afford. If staff lack confidence when speaking in public, that is a handicap. But if they are prepared to put the effort into the course work, you will probably want to help them.

First study the requirements of the course and satisfy yourself that this is an effective program. Then offer to pay the course fees of your staff. When you have seen the results of the course, your firm could develop a policy of encouraging staff members to take the Speechcraft course.

For more information, contact Summit Toastmasters at:

Thank you District 70 for help with the program description.