Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Five finds for speakers in work presentations & meetings

Your most frequent "public speaking" probably takes place in work-related settings, from videoconferencing to meetings and presentations. Here are five new tools, ideas and resources that have come across my desk recently to give you an edge in work-related speaking situations:
  1. Projector phone: The newly announced Samsung Galaxy Beam smartphone might whittle your presentation kit down to size, since it includes a projector. It's an "ultra-bright 15-lumen projector which lets you project a 50-inch wide image on a wall." For those of us who lug presentation tools around, a welcome prospect.
  2. Slide options: Lifehacker asked readers for their best PowerPoint alternatives, and came up with Keynote, Google Docs, Prezi, Beamer and Impress. A good roundup with free and paid options; readers voted Keynote the winner. But before you go all slide crazy, read Cordelia Ditton's great post, "A pig's eye view of PowerPoint," in which she reminds, "You can choose whatever option you like to engage with your audience, but make sure you choose it.  Engagement with your audience is your aim.  Just because you have invested in the technology and the gizmos, it doesn’t mean that you have to use them."
  3. Videoconferencing in their future? Based on the success of video "hangouts" on Google+ and remarks by a Google exec, Business Insider wonders whether Google might be moving next into videoconferencing. Sounds like you might want to start practicing with Google+ hangouts now...and it's a free tool. If you're on a lot of videoconferences, check out the headset in this roundup of tools for mobile workers.
  4. Even more quotable: TED's new quotes feature lets you find and share quotes from TED talks easily, a real boon whether you're looking for a quote to include in your own speech, writing a speech for someone else or just wanting to share a great thought.
  5. iPad for meetings: Inc. rounded up five ways to spruce up a lousy meeting using an iPad -- although you should remember they're not magical if the meeting's truly bad.

My post on "How Rush Limbaugh is helping me celebrate Women's History Month" is nominated as one of BlogHer's "Voices of the Year 2012." Follow this link to vote--and thanks for supporting this post.