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Executive communications

How amazing public speakers avoid verbal slop and drivel

You can’t deny it: Verbal slop and drivel often find their way into speeches and presentations. Don’t let this happen to you! Instead, learn to do what amazing public speakers do.   Did you know there’s an entire week each year – Words Matter Week – dedicated to stamping out “verbal slop and drivel”? That […]

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Want to become a better communicator? Make an effort to understand

For years communication pundits have written about our need as individuals to talk less and listen more. If you want to become a better communicator, check out “An Effort to Understand,” a new book by David Murray. He’s executive director of the Professional Speechwriters Association, editor and publisher of Vital Speeches of the Day and […]

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Executive communications thought leadership: Carpe diem, business leaders

With business now the most trusted institution in the world, it’s time for business leaders to seize the day – to advance civil discourse, listen and then take a stand on issues that align with their corporate values. It’s time for business leaders who may have been “waiting it out” to engage in executive communications […]

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Notable, quotable lines of inspirational leadership that Lincoln wrote (but never spoke)

Inspirational leadership is what CEOs and business leaders everywhere strive constantly to provide. When leaders find themselves struggling to find just the right words, often it is helpful to go back in history for some quiet study and reflection.   Abraham Lincoln is the first of four U.S. presidents examined in Doris Kearns Goodwin’s 2018 book, […]

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Crisis or disruption? You may be using the wrong playbook for leadership communication right now

An internet search on “COVID-19 crisis” produced 901 million results on Google in half a second this week. So it’s no wonder that many CEOs and business leaders are viewing COVID-19 through the lens of a crisis and applying crisis communication principles and practices to their leadership communication. The word “crisis” is prolific on COVID-19 […]

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10 lessons in effective leadership communication from an ‘ordinary’ budget speech

Even “ordinary” speeches call for effective leadership communication techniques. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s Budget 2020 speech offers concrete ideas and inspiration for CEOs and business leaders everywhere.   Nations and businesses worldwide are opening back up – albeit slowly – after months of strict lockdowns since the coronavirus began traipsing across the globe. […]

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How to gain back more time for deeper strategic thinking

If you’re an executive, you’re likely giving speeches and presentations with important messages related to your company’s mission, vision and expectations for your team. But how effective and efficient are your speeches and presentations? Take this simple quiz to find out. First, think about the last speech or presentation you gave on mission, vision or […]

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Executive communications: Is your speechwriter putting you on the spot?

CEOs and other leaders who’ve never worked with a speechwriter before sometimes wonder about the process. “How will this speechwriter get my ideas to resonate with the audience I need to influence?”   It’s an important question in executive communications. Because when you work with a speechwriter, it’s the speechwriter’s job to do the hard […]

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23 ways to be an exceptional emcee (don’t skip #13!)

Have you ever attended an event with a cadre of amazing speakers – one after the next – that still felt a bit stilted? Disjointed? Disorganized? Even downright awkward? Maybe that’s because the emcee was far less than exceptional. As a speechwriter, speech coach and author, I’ve been asked more than once to emcee professional […]

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