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[On] Point to Ponder: The “I Nailed It!” Blog Series

I recently finished Steven King’s masterpiece, The Green Mile. He did an interesting experiment when writing it – releasing it as 6 “novelettes,” one at a time. After all 6 parts were in circulation, he sold it as a box set. Reading it became an unexpectedly fun experience at my house; my daughter got started on it first. She was halfway through book 3 before I started. I flew through books 1 and 2, staying just a book behind for about a week. Then my husband started book 1. Much to her dismay, while Elizabeth was at an overnight, I passed her…

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[On] Point to Ponder: What’s OUR Story?

  For as long as I can remember, I have been passionate about all aspects of communication and message construction. Whether I was watching a commercial for “Air Jordan”, reading Cady Stanton’s famous “Seneca Falls” address (c. 1848), or dissecting nationally televised talks like the State of the Union, I have always been able to look at messages from multiple perspectives. To me, they are puzzles made up of pieces that were selected with great care and deliberation. In college, I’d work cheerfully in the dank, dark basement library for hours on end, analyzing speeches and identifying message strategies the…

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[On]Point to Ponder: “If You Build It, They Will Come.”

This 3-part blog post series digs into the “Speaker-Audience-Message” of that triangle as it relates to persuasive speaking. You are reading part 3. In today’s post, we end with “M for Message.” “M FOR MESSAGE”   Freytag’s Pyramid is an excellent tool for crafting a pitch deck, sales deck, keynote or TED talk. But what is it? Generated by 19th century novelist Gustav Freytag at the height of the American Civil War, Freytag’s pyramid emerged in 1863. This “how to tell a story” tool was widely used centuries earlier in Shakespeare’s 5 act plays, it just hadn’t been put to paper…

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[On] Point to Ponder: How to Bring Your Audience Aboard

How well do you know your audience? In my experience working with speakers, the point on the triangle that is the hardest for them to accomplish is Audience Analysis. Just last week, I was in the audience and at the end of the talk, a hand shot up. “Your talk on employee handbooks and HR-related concerns was interesting, but most of us in the audience – we’re 1-person entities. We don’t have employees.” [Silence.] A quick look back at the Rhetorical Triangle: There’s a reason the On Point logo is an equilateral triangle. It’s because a…

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[On] Point to Ponder: How To Rehearse Without Rehearsing

The Trouble with Keynotes In the early days of On Point, I was invited to give the keynote address that kicked off a 3-day entrepreneurship event. I had a month to prepare and was given a time limit of 30-45 minutes. I may have mentioned in previous posts that I have four children… who are oftentimes my best (and worst) critics when I’m rehearsing a talk. I don’t exactly have large blocks of time to rehearse a 45-minute talk three times in one day. And I know you don’t either. Keynotes and TED talks are unique. Often, slides are frowned…

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Testimonials

Cindy, you were immensely helpful in narrowing down the story part of our pitch. With your guidance, we were able to make a very complicated technical problem relatable to a mixed audience. We still can’t believe the first questions was, “it sounds too good to be true.” That is so much better than the feared, “I do understand what your product does.” Thank you for your professional help and support. RVC knew what they were doing bringing you in as a pitch coach.”

Samuel Thomas Elliott|Co-Founder, Tejon Technologies

“Cindy, Your coaching was fantastic. You are so good at this. I have done a lot of this too, but I am in awe of your approach, the simplicity of your suggestions and your general professionalism. Thank you.”

Susan Strong, Director at SAGE Boulder

“Last year, I reached out to Cindy to help me with a sales deck I use frequently. I learned how to personalize my presentation in an authentic and informative way, making it more interesting to deliver and for my audience to observe!  Cindy was professional, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable and her suggestions were spot on.  If you want to enhance your communication skills, gain confidence in speaking, and improve overall delivery, I definitely recommend working with On Point!”

Nicole Steed, Global Account Manager | Helms Briscoe

You are a wonderful presenter Cindy! I have taken so much from your presentation at the conference. I noticed when you speak, you at times lowered your volume in a way where we still heard you, but it PULLED the audience in, as if you were confiding in us.

Your vocal variety was lovely, (as well as your content, of course!). The advice to gather your stories from your past and weave them into your presentations is spot on.

Julie Roberts, Linked In profile writer|Coach

When you meet Cindy, you can’t help but feel engaged and pay attention. She clearly is an outstanding communications professional. The way she took the stage, conveyed her message and shared her approach to storytelling at the recent conference was mesmerizing.

Cindy made me rethink my approach to storytelling that I had used in my client work for many years. Cindy’s workshop alone made my trip to Denver worthwhile.

Ruth Winden, Executive Coach (UK)