Author: Robin Golinski

18 Feb Three  Ways to Handle Investor Questions Confidently 

Questions are an essential part of meetings. When questions are asked, there is interest.  Questions can be a test not only for your knowledge of the content but your confidence in what you are representing. The three techniques below will help you prepare for inevitable questions.
  1. Restate- In restating the question, you are NOT adding any new information or changing the meaning.   Changing the meaning does not always mean words, many times it’s done with tone and inflection.  Also restating DOES NOT mean using the same words and ‘parroting’ the information.  When this technique is done well, the listener repeats the essence of the message with no judgment, emotion, or opinion implied. In other words - a neutral tone.  It’s much easier said than done.  It can be most challenging in an emotionally loaded conversation, which is also where it is the most powerful and effective.  The main resistance people have to restate a question comes from the fear that they appear to be agreeing when they do not.  Do not let this stop you from using this effective technique, as it is even more powerful when you do not agree with the other person’s statement. 
  2. Disclaiming–  Many times, people are fearful of answering because they want to have the right answer.  “I don’t know, but I will find out” won’t get you very far in business communication, especially when it’s used more than once. Learning how to frame your answer can help.  Some phrases act as a disclaimer so you can offer insight or at least the limited information you do have. 
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07 Jan Three Nuanced Ways to Communicate Confidence

What people want most from communication coaching is the ability to appear, sound, and be confident. We all know when we see a confident communicator and when we don’t. Sometimes a speaker will say they felt confident but they are not perceived that way. Sometimes people will be very self-deprecating about their confidence, and their listeners didn’t see that at all. We are always trying to close the gap between self-perception and reality. It’s important to remember confidence is a  transient condition  even though everyone talks about it as a concrete destination. ALL speakers have felt their confidence come and go.
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18 Nov How your team’s non-verbal communication can destroy all of your progress 

I have helped many teams become more effective at presenting as a team.  Because humans are SO different and have SO many variables, it can be quite challenging to coach a team.  Most teams preparing on their focus on: 
  •      who will say what during which slides
  •      the order of presenters
  •     making the time fair/equal, etc.
  Often teams are presenting because the stakes are high, and the consequences are critical.  And, of course, money is frequently involved either as part of a department budget, a start-up trying to get funding, and many other situations in which the listeners must hear from the entire team.  The people listening to the team present will be acutely aware of all of the non-verbal communication of the team.  Whatever this communication reveals will carry more substantial weight than the words were spoken.  A well-known architectural firm who brought me in because they started losing projects that they should have won.  After assessing the team, I realized that one of the members did not get along with the others.  Despite well-planned, streamlined presentations they still lost, and they were dumbfounded.  What were they missing?  Their subtle nonverbal behaviors communicated the discontent within the team.  Despite the polite and professional words, the facial expressions, the lack of eye contact, the dismissive exchanging of documents, etc. were all indicators of discord within the team.  People believe what they feel energetical and what they see over what they hear.  It is SO SUBTLE.  These nonverbal behaviors are the kind of things that only human beings can detect . This client of mine needed a new type of coaching to get past the issues that plagued the team. 
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23 Sep Use Humor to be More Effective in Presentations 

People want to do business with people they like.  Making someone smile or chuckle will have the effect of:        Quickly building rapport       Connect you and your information with positive feelings       Lower your listener’s defenses creating a more receptive mindset   Studies have shown that humor can also increase...

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17 Sep The one thing most people never pay attention to when presenting  – CONTEXT 

What does that title mean?  The actual context for your listeners is what they have experienced before they begin listening to you speak.  The framework can include such things as: 
  •                Local or global political breaking news
  •                Weather
  •                Challenges with the venue or room
  •                Personal issues
  Foremost in their mind is anything that your listener has heard, said, felt, or experienced just before giving you their attention.  If you can observe their body language and facial expressions as they arrive, you can sense it.  You may be thinking, "I have no control over that, nor can I even know what those things maybe." First let's address an example of something you should know about and secondly, more commonly the things you will not know about (unless you are psychic).  Both are important to understand.  It's essential to have the sensitivity to something that may have just broken in the news that is either relevant to the industry or topic which you are speaking about or something so huge it affects everyone.  For example: 
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23 Jul 3 Ways to Handle Questions Confidently 

Questions are an essential part of meetings. When questions are asked, there is interest; thats a good thing.  Questions can be a test not only for your knowledge of the content but your confidence in what you are representing.   The 3 techniques below will help you prepare for inevitable questions.   1) Restate- In restating the question you are NOT adding any new information or changing the meaning.  This is really important.  Changing the meaning does not always mean words, many times its done with tone and inflection.  Also restating DOES NOT mean using the same words and parroting’ the information.  When this technique is done well the listener repeats the essence of the message with no judgment, emotion or opinion implied, in other words - a neutral tone.  Its much easier said than done.  It can be most challenging in an emotionally loaded conversation which is also where it is the most powerful and effective.  The main resistance people have to restating comes from the fear that they may be seen as agreeing when they do not.  Do not let this stop you from using this effective technique, as it is even more powerful when you do not agree with the other persons statement.  2) Disclaiming– Many times people are fearful to give an answer because they want to have the right answer.  I dont know, but I will find out” wont really get you very far in business communication especially when its used more than once. Learning how to frame your answer can help.  There are phrases which act as a disclaimer so you can offer insight or at least the limited information you do have.  
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23 Jan Why becoming an entrepreneur may be the best choice for women

73.5% of direct sellers are women

Let’s start with some statistics.  

Women are still earning 82 cents for every dollar a man earns.  If part time workers were included in that statistic, it would be much lower.  

Upwards of 75% of all caregivers are female, and may spend as much as 50% more time providing care than males. [Institute on Aging. (2016)]

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22 Jan Powerful Persuasion Begins with a Good Story

Are you a good storyteller?

Have you tried to get your child to go to bed on time?

What about enticing a certain someone to date you?

Or...telling senior management that you deserve a raise and a promotion?

How much of your communication involves persuading and influencing others? Think about it. The most efficient and effective way to persuade someone is through storytelling. 

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27 Nov Why men should attend the Massachusetts Conference for Women in December 2018

I have always learned so much about the male mindset through my brother and many times it was contrary to what society was teaching. He was always a great ally to my sister and I when confronting our irrational and impulsive mother. I continue to learn from him by having very candid conversations about male/female dynamics and perspectives. He is angered about the #metoo stories coming out and couldn’t imagine taking advantage of an incapacitated female. He’s the type of man that women need as an ally to change the world for the better.
 
My brother was more emotionally sensitive than his two older sisters and that annoyed our dad. My sister and I would tease him until he cried, then my dad would chastise him for crying. Needless to say, I don’t think we helped him feel safe around women and I now shudder at the memories. When I was 19 and he was 16 we got into a physical fight only this time he realized he was finally bigger and stronger than I was. It took a minute for it to sink into my brain as he grabbed me by the arms and lifted me off the ground. I think we were both scared of the new stakes of this common interaction and decided it was best to stop physically fighting especially since I could no longer win (LOL).
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02 Nov Cry Like a Little Girl

Communication fascinates me. This is one of the reasons why I love being a communication trainer and coach.  Communication is like breathing, it’s happening through every person every minute of the day. Communication breakdowns are inevitable no matter how thoughtful we are. As a communication trainer, I can become an observer/researcher to distract myself from negatively reacting (sometimes) as I did on a recent family visit. The opportunity to learn came from my 19 year old daughter when we were meeting a new significant other (SO) of one of my sisters.  The new SO is an affable guy and everyone really liked him.  We had a busy day of talking and storytelling.
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24 Jul The Transformational Effect of Live Storytelling 

The ability to speak with impact directly correlates with one’s salary. As an Executive Communication Coach, I have helped many nervous professionals hone their speaking skills in order to advance their careers. Typically, the coaching and training focuses on content organization and delivery skills for maximum effectiveness.     I love communication so much that it is not just my day job, but also my hobby. I’m a storyteller and participate in story slams. These are events where regular people tell a personal, true story to a crowd, based on the theme of the night. Many of them have never used a microphone before and some require coaxing by their friends to tell.
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21 May 3 Ways to Handle Difficult Questions Confidently 

Why do people ask difficult questions? 
  • They need the information 
  • They want attention from the group 
  • They want to look smart 
  • They use the questions to influence and persuade 
  • They want to intimidate 
  • Because it’s culturally appropriate 
  • They want to challenge the presenter 
  • They want to make the presenter look unprepared/foolish/dumb 
  • Questions are safer to ask than providing answers 
  • They want to be disruptive 
  • They want to change the subject 
  • They want to give their opinion indirectly 
  Dealing with difficult questions:  Questions are a normal part of most business meetings. It is also normal for questions to be somewhat confusing or unclear. 
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24 Apr 3 Ways Storytelling Can be Effective in Business 

Storytelling is an advanced communication tool that can build rapport, increase retention and powerfully persuade.  Capturing, structuring and delivering relevant stories is an invaluable skill in business.  1.)  Building Rapport - Experiences are unique; however, emotions are universal.  Telling a short, interesting, personal story allows the listener to tap into the same emotion as the teller, creating a bonding moment. 
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