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Project Management for Beginners and Experts

Episode 181: Improving Your Project Presentations - One Tweet at a Time

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Episode 181: Improving Your Project Presentations - One Tweet at a TimeSo tell me... how often do you as a project manager need to give a presentation? This could be as simple as adressing your team during a team meeting, facilitating a telephone conference with your customers, giving a formal status update to your sponsors or customers or even doing a web based meeting. If I look back at my work as a PM I probably had to do this at least two to three times every single week. And I assume that it’s very similar for you as well.

That is why I’ve gone ahead and invited Wayne Turmel (http://www.greatwebmeetings.com/) to the program today. Wayne has been teaching how you can excel at giving presentations for many years and he has published several books on the topic. The latest one is called “#PRESENTATION tweet - 140 Ways to Present with Impact”. The book is full of tweets on improving your presentations and you can find it at http://www.happyabout.com/thinkaha/presentationtweet01.php

We have selected 12 of these tweets for today’s interview with Wayne and he goes much, MUCH deeper into each topic.

Of course, we are also doing a book giveaway and we have 2 copies of Wayne’s book. As always: 1 copy is reserved for our premium listeners and one copy is raffled off via our facebook fan page. So go to www.facebook.com/pmpodcast, find the post with this book giveaway and leave a comment to participate in the giveaway.

Below are the first few pages of the transcript. The complete transcript is available to Premium subscribers only.

Podcast Introduction

Cornelius Fichtner: This is The Project Management Podcast™. We bring project management to beginners and experts. Find us on the web at www.pm‑podcast.com or send your emails to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Cornelius Fichtner: Hello and welcome to Episode #181. I am Cornelius Fichtner. This is The Project Management Podcast™, nice to have you with us.

So tell me, how often do you as a project manager have to give a presentation? I mean this could be as simple as addressing your team during a team meeting, maybe facilitate a telephone conference with your customers, giving a formal status update to your sponsors or customers or even doing a web-based meeting. If I look back at my work as a project manager, I probably had to do this at least 2 to 3 times every single week. And I assume that it’s very similar for you as well.

That is why I’ve gone ahead and I’ve invited Wayne Turmel to the program today. Wayne has been teaching on how you can excel at giving presentations for many years and he has published several books on the topic. The latest one is called “#PRESENTATION tweet - 140 Ways to Present with Impact”. The book is full of tweets on improving your presentations.

We have selected 12 of these tweets, these tips, for today’s interview with Wayne and he goes much, much more deeper into each topic.

This episode of The Project Management Podcast™ is sponsored by The PM Exam Simulator™ because nothing prepares you more for the PMP Exam than being able to sit down and take a realistically simulated PMP Exam. Go to www.FreeExamSimulator.com and get your free 3-day access, and see for yourself what the PMP Exam is like at www.FreeExamSimulator.com.

As always, we are giving away 2 copies of Wayne’s book in electronic form this time. So if you are interested, please go to www.facebook.com/pmpodcast and look for the giveaway announcement here for Wayne’s book. Leave a comment and well, you may become the lucky winner.

Wayne Turmel is the host of the Cranky Middle Manager show podcast, and he’s the president of www.Greatwebmeetings.com, which teaches people the presentation skills they need to present, train and manage your team through online presentation tools like WebEx and the like. He’s the author of 2 new books, “10 Steps to successful Virtual Presentations” and “Presentation Tweets 01”. He is dedicated in helping people learn to communicate in this crazy world of virtual teams and scattered audiences. He is in Chicago, Illinois.

And now, in 140 characters or less, what again makes a good presentation? Enjoy the interview

Podcast Interview

Female voice: The Project Management Podcast’s feature Interview: Today with Wayne Turmel, President of www.GreatWebMeetings.com, The Connected Manager Blogger for BNET.com and host of the Cranky Middle Manager show.

Cornelius Fichtner: Hello Wayne, welcome to The Project Management Podcast™.

Wayne Turmel: Cornelius, thank you for having me back brother!

Cornelius Fichtner: You recently published a book called “#Presentation Tweet..” why and most importantly how did you write that book?

Wayne Turmel: Well, it was interesting. The publisher THINKaha approached me and said: “You know we’re doing this series of books with people like Rajesh Setty and Kevin Eikenberry and all those people, and we’re looking for somebody who’s an expert in communication skills.” And what they had done was they had pulled people at Cisco, very technical people, lot of project managers, and people engaged in that end of things. And they had their best practices. They wanted somebody to kind of put some structure around it and add their own wisdom to it. So I jumped at the chance partly because I’m a shameless self-promoter in any book that my name on it is good. But more importantly, I have as long-time listeners to the Cranky Middle Manager. I’ve got a real soft spot for technical people and if I can tell you one little story from my misspent youth that I tell in the book about why that is.

Cornelius Fichtner: Go for it.

Wayne Turmel: And here it is. Project managers will either be grateful for my empathy or hate me forever. But here’s the deal: When I was in about third grade, I did a project with a bunch of other kids. They spent all night gluing the little dinosaurs into the shoeboxes and putting the diorama together. And I basically did not a whole lot. But when it came to present it to the class, I was first one on the bus and ready to ride. So I presented it and said: “This is terradon and this is a brontosaurus“ and all that good stuff.

Well instantly, it became known as Wayne’s team and the poor kids who had spent all night getting glue all over their hands and putting the dinosaurs in place didn’t get nearly as much credit as I did for being the one to communicate the plan.

Now, on one hand, that’s awful and terrible and I should hate myself. On the other hand, it was a pretty important lesson which is no matter how smart you are or how good at your job, if you cannot effectively communicate what you do, you’re not going to get the credit and the advantages and the rewards. So on the one hand, shallow it is like me, get all the credit and that’s unfair but on the other hand, if you really do know what you’re talking about and you can communicate effectively, the world is pretty much your oyster. So that was why I was so excited about the project because these are very smart people many of whom struggle with getting their projects funded, getting the recognition that they deserve, getting the career advancement that they deserve because they pay attention to the work and they don’t necessarily pay attention to how they communicate it. Does that makes sense and ease my conscience just a bit?

Cornelius Fichtner: Absolutely! Yes, we hereby absolve you.

Wayne Turmel: Excellent, thank you!

Cornelius Fichtner: What will the reader find in and learn from the book?

Wayne Turmel: Well, there are 140 tweets, it’s 140 characters in a tweet so it seemed a nice symmetry and it’s broken up into 4 sections that I think are really key to people particularly in technical fields.

The first is to define and hone your message. The second is what we would think of as delivery skills. This third part is something that we all have to present and that is obviously very close to what the majority of my experiences which is presenting online running virtual meetings and presenting via webinar and then what’s really important for people trying to get their projects funded and getting resources, presenting up and down and across the organization. How does presenting to senior leadership differ from presenting to my peers or to customers? So we took the tweets and we broke them up into those 4 particular areas.

Cornelius Fichtner: Right! In today’s interview, we’re going to take a look at 3 of those areas which is the: Define and hone your message, deliver your message like a pro, and presenting up and down.

And in the second interview, we’re going to jump into the virtual presentations here.

Wayne Turmel: Great!

Cornelius Fichtner: You opened the book with your introduction with a mention of the hardest lesson that we have to learn. What’s that lesson and how can we project managers overcome it?

 

Above are the first few pages of the transcript. The complete transcript is available to Premium subscribers only. Please subscribe to our Premium Podcast to receive a PDF transcript.

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