It has a massive influence on our success in life.
I find it the most exciting, intriguing and vital skill we can improve.
At Pink Elephant Communications, we’re now offering new courses using specialist trainers to help you do just that.
We’re also launching our new site – www.pinkelephantcomms.com – to reflect these changes and keep you up to date with the latest communications tips, media training advice and presentation skills techniques.
Here’s what’s now on offer:
How are your negotiation skills? Mine failed this weekend with my five-year-old grandson.
Question: “Would you like to like to come to the park with Gran and Papa for a nice cup of coffee?”
Answer: “No thanks Papa.”
Now had I attended a negotiation skills course, I would have learned that the goals of the other party have to come before our own – if we are to get where we want.
So next time I’ll suggest a trip to the swings followed by an ice cream and some tree-climbing thrown in. Then I may get my coffee!
The way people use social media makes journalists like me look like the most responsible people on the planet.
Social media is quickly eroding the power of traditional media, especially newspapers. But with power comes responsibility – so use it wisely.
Newspapers love quoting social media – especially when people have made ill-judged remarks.
So consider how what you say on Twitter or Facebook would look on the front page of a tabloid – because it could well end up there. Especially if you hold down a responsible job.
Rather than miss the fantastic opportunity social media offers, learn how to embrace and use it on our social media courses.
And open up a new mindset, where enlightened self-interest, sharing what you know for the benefit of others, will in time pay dividends for you and your company.
Do you ever feel like giving up the will to live when reading a letter from a utility company or even an email from your own legal department?
Jargon-filled generalities – lacking any clear message – lose our attention. And we’re unable to explain to anyone else what the message was…so the communication trail goes cold at our feet.
Our business writing course shows you how to start with the point – what’s in it for your audience – and get your message across in the fewest words, in the simplest way….so everybody gets it first time.
Then your message can be passed to everybody who needs to know.
“You’re through to The Bank of We’ve Got Your Money and You’re Not Getting It Back…this is Simon speaking…sorry for keeping you waiting…your call is important to us…how can I help you today?”
The world felt a much better place when I could call my bank manager, tell him I was building a house and ask him to visit the plot to discuss a loan.
But the world has changed. Call centres handle your enquiries. Most drive us to despair.
Many companies send their staff to our telephone training course…to learn a better way of dealing with complaints and passing on key information by phone.
We simulate the calls, play them back and let some handlers hear how their tone suggested they had all the empathy of a jellyfish – cold, slippery…with a nasty sting.
Then with the right language and tone in place, they’ll sound more like a Labrador pup – friendly, keen…and barking up the right tree.
You need to make changes to your department or business. How do you manage that change?
And how to you get the buy-in from your employees?
With honesty, openness and respect – understanding that whatever is in it for them…good or bad news…is where you start.
Pushing bad news down the agenda is attempting to bury it – so why would we trust someone who did that?
Organise the change, meet it head on – and understand the feelings of your audience. It’s how we all want to be treated.
It may just be change that they fear. So spell out why their role would be improved through that change – with belief and confidence.
Our change management course helps you plan the change and devise the message, sharpen it, rehearse it – and implement it properly.
We all present every day – so why should making a business presentation strike fear in the heart of so many?
You tell us that you feel most confident when well-prepared…and least confident when ill-prepared. So we help you prepare in two ways.
Firstly, by devising key messages and examples that make the point clearly.
Secondly, by giving you clear rules to follow in building then presenting your case.
Then we’ll record and playback your performances…turning self-criticism into self-analysis.
Until fear is replaced by confidence. That’s why your organisation could benefit from a presentation skills course.
Put your fingers in a power socket and you’ll blow yourself up. Plug in properly and the energy you harness will drive any device.
And so it is with the media. People are naturally cautious – or scared – to engage. But when you know what you’re doing, it’s liberating.
Our media training courses – run in our Glasgow studios or further afield in Edinburgh, Aberdeen, London…and in 23 countries across the world…have helped individuals and businesses launch products, announce cutbacks and communicate major changes to their organisation.
In the right way, with the right tone, using the right words.
Our trainers have more than a century of experience among them as journalists and broadcasters. In a day on our media training course, you’ll learn how to get it right with the media – every time.
Each week though our blogs we’ll pass on our knowledge and techniques, commenting on news stories and events around the world.
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Bill McFarlan is managing director of media training and presentation skills training firm Pink Elephant Communications in Glasgow.
You can view his full profile here.
Some media trainers knock you down…and leave you down. Our media coaches show you how to deal with each knock…and still win through. So you have the presentation skills to perform – with confidence.