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Top Keyboard Shortcuts to Save You Time!

This month we are delighted to do something a bit different.  Sharon, who is our operations coordinator, also runs her own business Sharon’s Tutorials.
She is an absolute whizz at all things tech relative to small business owners.  For example, Gmail, Google Apps, MS Office, Canva, Zoom, and any other software that helps small businesses to run smoothly.
Lots of her tips are relevant to people in larger businesses too.  So, she has kindly volunteered to share some of her wisdom with us.  When you have finished enjoying this blog, why don’t you Subscribe to her YouTube Channel by clicking here.
Enjoy!
 
 
Having run my own admin business since 2010, I have come across a LOT of time-saving tips and tricks on various platforms and software. I share a few of them below on 5 different platforms that most businesses either use on a regular basis or may use in the future.
 
Windows Magnifier
If you’re a Windows user, then you might like to know about Windows...

Rhetoric – what is it and why must you use it in persuasive communications?

We all know that people will absorb our message via what they see and what they hear.
So, it is our body language, how our voices sound (tone, pace etc) and the words that we use.
When you are putting together your content, you are likely to be gathering your points, creating your structure and deciding how you will open and close.
But, how much thought do you give the actual words you use and your sentence construction?
Maybe not a huge amount?
Here’s the thing – when we communicate, we generally want “something to happen”.
Right?
So, we need to be persuasive.  Rhetoric is a wonderful tool to help us add real impact to our content.
There are many definitions of rhetoric and rhetorical devices.  For example, according to Wikipedia
“A rhetorical device is a technique that is used by a speaker or an author for conveying a particular message to the audience in such a way that it provokes an emotional response to a particular action. It is a linguistic tool, whose employment ca...

Virtual Meetings Etiquette

As with any form of communication, there is a certain etiquette, or list of unspoken rules/guidelines, that should be followed when giving or attending an online or virtual meeting.  As the host of the meeting, you should not expect the attendees to instinctively know what is expected of them.  Similarly, as the attendee of an online meeting, you should respect the wishes of the host and follow any instructions or guides that have been given to you.
We have listed below our recommendations in 7 areas of online meetings for both the host and participant which we hope you will find useful.
 
Software
As the host of the virtual meeting or online event, generally you get to decide which virtual platform to use – unless you are limited by your organisation or IT dept!
So, which do you use? There are plenty to choose from now –  from Zoom, Teams to Google Meet and others – so make sure you use one that caters for all your needs. For example, do you need to have access to breako...

Best practice for presentation slides: Virtually vs In-person

Whilst we know how important the delivery of a presentation is – both in-person and virtual – the slides often take a back seat when it comes to the design.  There are specific differences between presenting virtually and in-person that you need to be aware of when creating your slides.  Below are our tips based on our own presentations that we’ve delivered virtually and in-person.
 
Preparation
Preparation is key to any presentation, and researching your audience is vital to the success of your presentation.  You need to understand who you are presenting to, why they should listen to you and how you can help them.
Virtual
The first thing to think about when it comes to designing slides to be delivered virtually, is how will your audience be viewing them?  Is it likely they’ll be watching on their mobile? Or will they mainly be watching on their laptop / tablet / desktop screen?
This will have an impact on your design, and how much detail you include on the slides.
In-...

How to appear more confident when presenting

Being able to present confidently is a skill, and like any other skill it requires plenty of practice in order to develop and improve it.  By practising your presentation skills on a regular basis means you will be honing your overall communication skills as well as boosting your self-confidence.
Preparation & planning is key to you delivering a successful presentation, whether it’s delivered virtually or in-person.  Being prepared will also calm your mind and help manage your nerves before delivering your presentation.
By focusing on each of the 3 key areas below, you’ll not only look more confident when presenting but feel it too, meaning you will have a more enjoyable presenting experience.
 
1. Your Voice
When presenting virtually, make sure to speak clearly and a bit louder than your normal conversational voice.  Remember people are listening to you on their PC or phone so their audio may not be as clear as when they’re in the same room as you.  They can adjust...

3 ways to add more energy into your virtual presentations

When you give a presentation, you know how important it is to be engaging and energetic to keep your audiences’ attention on you.  This is especially true when it’s delivered virtually, as you’re competing with distractions that are outside of your control.  Your audience may have to deal with incoming emails, children, pets, notifications, deliveries, all happening at the same time you are trying to keep their attention.
There are a few things you can do to help spice up your presentations and make them more engaging for your audience, and in this blog post we share 3 of the best ways to do just that!
 
1. Movement
Obviously, your movement is slightly restricted as you’re likely to be in front of a webcam on the laptop when you’re presenting virtually.  However, if you stand up to present you naturally feel more energetic, and there’s no reason why you can’t include a small bit of upper body movement.  Remember energy is contagious – the more enthused you are,...

How to be more persuasive when presenting

One of the many challenges presenters face is how to be persuasive, engaging and likable all at the same time during their presentation.
Whether you are giving a pitch to receive funding, giving a presentation to a prospective client, or presenting an idea to other members of your team, your content, body language and voice all play a part in how persuasive you are.
In this post we’re going to share our top tips to help you be more persuasive when presenting so that your audience will listen and respond in a positive way.
 
Get the structure right
Opening:  You have to grab the audience’s attention straightaway – shock them with a statistic, ask a rhetorical question, or tell a personal story.  Whichever method you use to hook them in, remember this sets the scene for the rest of the presentation so make sure you give a positive first impression.
Main: Wrap the main focus of your content in a story (see Tip 2 below).  Watch the language you use and keep things simple....
presentation skills

Top 3 presentation skills that make your audience sit up and listen

Giving a presentation is a nerve-wracking experience for many people. But it doesn’t have to be! With some simple presentation skills, you can grab your audience’s attention and keep them engaged. The key is knowing what makes an engaging talk that will make your audience sit up and listen.
To help you out, we’ve put together our top 3 presentation skills that will make any speaker sound more confident and professional, whether presenting in-person or virtually.
 
1. Be passionate about the topic you are presenting
The chances are that you may not always love the topic of your presentation. Sometimes we just want to give up and go home! But there is hope!
One way to incorporate passion into your presentation is to tell a story.  Stories are powerful because they connect with your audience emotionally as well as logically. They remind us of the personal connection we all share with each other in our humanity.  Stories help to make your audience feel a part of wh...
facial expressions

The importance of facial expressions during hybrid presentations

Presentation skills is not just about the words you speak or the content on your slides.  It encompasses everything… your gestures, your posture, your body language, your vocal tone, pitch and volume, and your facial expressions.  They all play a huge role in how your audience perceives you and your presentation, especially as we are now embracing a hybrid world!
Below are our tips to help ensure you are giving the right message when it comes to your facial expressions, so you don’t lose any engagement with your audience members or miss an opportunity to connect with them.
 
Why are facial expressions important?
Facial expressions are vital when it comes to communicating.
During a presentation, your audience depend on your facial expressions to enhance the meaning of what you are saying.  This is especially true when presenting virtually as the audience sees a close-up view of your face, so you need to be aware of your expressions now more than ever!
Congruency is key ...
hybrid meeting

How to present with impact to a hybrid audience

According to a new Harvard Business School Survey 61% of people say they would like to have a hybrid working structure.
And a survey from CIPD Ireland in March of this year, found that one in two businesses in Ireland plan to adopt remote working in some form on a permanent basis.
With this in mind, we can safely say, that the virtual and hybrid world is here to stay.  So, it is time to add some new relevant skills to your presentation skills toolkit.
Read on for practical tips that will help you deliver your presentation effectively and with impact to a hybrid audience.
 
1. Room and equipment set up
Even though there will be people physically in the room for your presentation or meeting, your main priority and focus when setting up the room should be on the people who will be attending virtually.
Focus on what the virtual audience will need in order for them to feel included and be fully engaged.  Set the room up with them in mind, as they will need to see everything including...