How to: Be Yourself, even in a presentation

“Be yourself- everyone else is already taken”, one of my favourite quotes by Oscar Wilde.
It popped into my head, during a recent yoga holiday with my better half. The photo to the right is us doing our own version of the Tree Pose… hopefully no yoga teachers will be reading this!  We most certainly are not doing it right.  But, we are doing it our own way and being ourselves.
Over the course of the holiday, as we chatted to others on the trip – the topic of being yourself came up several times.  There were discussions about how sometimes a partner or a job, can turn us into a different persona.  Sometimes this persona can be at odds with what we feel to be our true persona.
Often, during presentation coaching sessions with clients, I see them struggling to be themselves. The struggle can be for many reasons. The tips below address some of the reasons why they struggle & how to overcome them.
1. Freaking out over doing a Presentation
I dislike the...
powerpoint presentation

Guest Post: 3 tips for professional looking PowerPoint presentations

Sharon works with us on the admin end of our business.  She is a font of efficiency and knowledge on all things relating to running your business.  On top of that, she is a whizz on all the Microsoft Office products, in particular PowerPoint.  Below she shares some of her tips on making your PowerPoint presentations look more professional.

I often help my coaches with their PowerPoint presentations ready for their training workshops or networking meetings/pitches.  I usually help with setting up their master slide templates and checking for spelling, inconsistency etc.  Below are some of my top tips to think about next time you’re setting up your own slides…
1. Be Consistent
Consistency is key to helping your presentation look professional.  Make sure the same fonts are used throughout – if you use one font for the header and a different one for the main body text then make sure this is the same on every slide. One quick way of doing this is to set up your Master Slide ...
Impact on voice

How to double your impact when presenting… halve your words and mind your voice!

Just recently I had a severe cold and sore throat.  It really hurt to talk – so I basically stopped talking for almost 2 days.
Torture for me.  A treat for my husband!
After 2 days, my throat was still painful so I was making a real effort to speak less.
This involved a lot of thumbs up, thumbs down, nodding, head shaking, and making of sad faces … a lot of sad faces 🙁 !  I was out to squeeze as much sympathy as I could out of these few days in the bed.
Thankfully, my issue with my voice recently was a temporary thing.  When I was back in the office, I did mention to any clients I was phoning, that I was just over a throat issue, so was minding my voice.  This got me a bit more sympathy 🙂 but also helped them understand why my phone calls were briefer than normal.
However, what if you have ongoing struggles with your voice?  Maybe you have to speak for an extraordinary number of hours every week?  Maybe you have a voice condition?  Below are some tips which can he...
how to stop blushing

Tips on remembering names to help eliminate the 50 shades…of red!

Have you ever been in a situation where you have forgotten someone’s name?
Isn’t it even worse, when they have obviously remembered your name and use it several times?
You are left scrambling in your memory banks, hoping that it will suddenly come to you!  Sometimes you might even go through every letter in the alphabet, in your head – hoping against hopes that it will jump into your mind.
It can be very embarrassing, you could even find yourself turning “50 shades of red”!
A few years ago  I was visiting Kilmuckridge in Co Wexford and I met a 3 year old whom I hadn’t met since the previous year.
I was really surprised (and flattered!) when she shouted over “Hi Barbara”.
I commented to her mother that she had a child who was gifted with a fantastic memory for names, either that or I had made an amazing impression on her the previous year! Her mother burst my bubble by replying “her playschool teacher’s name is Barbara”.  Therein, lies th...
Guest blogging

Guest Blogging – How to Make Sure it Delivers for You

This is the second part of the recent blog by Suzanne May.
Suzanne is the owner of Story Gem, a professional writing service, which helps small business make a bigger impact using the power of the written word.
In our last post we discussed some of the pros and cons of accepting guest blogs on your business website.
We saw how there are some great benefits to doing this, but there are also some cons that can make guest blogging a risky business, if you don’t know what to watch out for.
Today, we’re going to give you some of the best tips available to ensure that if you decide to accept guest blogs on your business website, you don’t end up with a heavy dose of regret afterward.
Barbara, from On Your Feet, says she’s a ‘fussy cow’ about who she lets blog on her site.  She only allows people to guest blog when their content is compatible with hers.  Furthermore she only lets people she knows very well and has met face to face to guest blog on her site.
She has good reason....
Guest blogs

Allowing Guest Blogs on Your Site – What You Need to Know

This blog is the first in a series of 2 on the topic of guest blogging.  It comes from the wonderful Suzanne May.  Suzanne is the owner of Story Gem, a professional writing service, which helps small business make a bigger impact using the power of the written word.
The way that we present ourselves to the world is so important.
In business, we strive to come across as professional and personable when meeting new people. Barbara, at On Your Feet, does an amazing job of teaching businesses how to give engaging presentations and excel at public speaking.
But, in an increasingly digital world, we need to be aware of how we present ourselves online too. And our business blog plays a big part in that. So, the idea of allowing an ‘outsider’ to take over for a day can be a daunting prospect. There are substantial benefits to accepting guest blogs on your website, but you also need to be aware of what can go wrong too. Knowing the pitfalls in advance helps you to recognise and sidestep t...
radio interview

And now for something … a bit different!

Below is an interview that Barbara Moynihan, the founder of On Your Feet, did on South Dublin FM with Joe Dalton of Breakthrough Brands. It gives you an insight into the journey Barbara took to get On Your Feet to where it is now.
Press Play below to listen to the podcast:

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Oscars 2018 – who wins the best speech award?

USA today described last night’s Oscars as a “relatively tame and predictable night”. Is that a fair description?
Maybe it was.
Maybe it wasn’t.
For me, I am always curious about the speeches.
Interestingly, in his monologue, Jimmy Kimmel referred to said upcoming speeches. He tried to encourage the winners to keep their speeches short, by promising a prize of a jet ski to the shortest speech.
So, I am sure Mark Bridges, who won the Costume Design Oscar for Phantom Thread, is whizzing in his brand new jet ski, somewhere off the coast of LA! He managed to get through his thank you’s in a mere 32 seconds.
But, the good thing about the lure of the jet ski prize, was that it gave several of the winners an opportunity to throw in a bit of humour early on in their speeches, by making throw back references to the infamous prize.
Overall, from what I can glean, the 2018 Oscars were nothing particularly special. In 2017, at least we had something to talk about, with the excitement...

Oscar acceptance speeches – and why Liam Neeson may be glad he never won!

The Oscars are just a day away. I’m sure the question on everyone’s’ lips is – Who will be the winners?
But there are others who are more interested in 2 other questions:
What will they wear?
What will they say?
Whatever about the outfits – of particular focus this year, will be how many will wear black, in support of the #MeToo campaign.
My particular fascination is with wondering what the winners will say. Will we have speeches along the line of Oprah’s one at The Golden Globes, delivered with eloquence and passion?
While I am not a major movie buff, I do watch with fascination as actors and actresses step to the stage as “themselves”. It is quite amazing how we assume that they are as confident playing “themselves”, as they seem to be in the roles they play.
But that is not always the case, and for some making a speech is something they really fear.
Take for example, Liam Neeson. Neeson has played really strong powerful roles, including Oskar Schindle...
Face to face communication

5 tips for your face to face communications – specifically presentations

In this age where most of us spend our working day communicating through emails and our personal time communicating via Instagram, Snapchat, Whatsapp and text  – how significant is face to face communication?
Well, according to a study at Harvard, face to face communication is 34 times more successful than an email.
That’s fairly significant, don’t you think?
So, when you are communicating to a group of people, be it to your team, the board, at a conference or in a pitch – you really want to make sure that you hit the mark.
The tips below focus on helping you with your delivery of the message.
1. Water, water but never milk!
Okay so, this is a bit random – but it is important!
Never drink milk before a presentation as it coats your vocal chords and impedes your vocal impact.  Sip water regularly (at least every 5 minutes) – if you feel thirsty you are already dehydrated.
Sipping water also allows you time to pause during your presentation, and if...