Well first, let me say thanks for the warm welcome Barry, and in the immortal words of one of my heroes, Dean Martin, "how’d all these people get in my room?" 

 

Well as my bio states, I spent most of the 90′s hidden away in the deepest darkest recesses of the largest mountains in the world.  My experiences over those seven years have formed how I approach business and consulting.  One of the biggest lessons I have learned, and carry with me today, is to prepare properly.  For an expedition the size of Annapurna, it took months of planning and logistics work.  Speaking in public and/or presenting to C-level executives for client corporations requires significant planning as well.

 

As with climbing any major mountain, you need to learn everything you can about the route, weather, etc.  Tha same goes for speaking.  You have to learn everything you can about your audience.  I spend hours pouring over research about a client’s industry and company.  By doing this I make sure that I speak to the issues and challenges they face everyday.

 

Now one of the things that I was taught by some of my mentors in IT early on was to make a strong opening and closing and to just memorize that part.  I can’t find a way to compare that to alpine climbing, but suffice it to say, I make sure that I have some great facts and figures memorized about my clients industry and company, maybe some IT initiatives I’ve been able to uncover in my research.  This will really blow your audience away when you can jump right in and speak intelligently about their industry and/or company.

 

As I have learned over the years climbing and life in general, if you visualize yourself doing something it makes it easier to achieve your goals.  I used to visualize myself reaching the summit of mountains.  I still had to endure many hardships (freezing temperatures, snow, ice, avalanches, etc) to reach a summit, but visualizing myself standing on top helped push me forward when it took everything I had to just put one foot in front of the other.  I take that same approach before I begin any presentation.  I visualize my success and getting a great positive response from my audience.  If you follow this little piece of advice it will go a long way in calming those nerves and mentally setting yourself up for success.

 

The last thing I want to close out my first post with is to give you two words:  Passion and Enthusiasm.  I am passionate about the technology I have made a career out of; Citrix.  I share my passion and enthusiasm for business and technology everyday I’m in meetings with clients and prospective clients.  I share this passion and enthusiasm with groups that I speak in front of.    People feed off of these two emotions.  If you exude enthusiasm for your topic your audience picks up on that and it carries the rest of the way through the presentation.  These two emotions will help you create success.

 

I am looking forward to contributing to this site and sharing my alpine climbing experiences and how they help me everyday in my career.

 

Cheers
Michael

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Another New Blogger at PublicSpeakingforGeeks.com

Posted by Barry Flanagan on Aug 11th, 2008
2008
Aug 11

 

Recently I posted a call for new bloggers here at PublicSpeakingforGeeks.com. Hilari Weinstein was the first to answer the call. I am very pleased to announce I have a second victim blogger for the site. :)

 

 

Michael Keen is our newest blogger.

 

Michael Keen is the Director and Senior Solutions Architect in the Enterprise Architecture group at Alliance Technologies in Des Moines, Iowa.  He is an innovative, results-oriented architect and executive with over a ten years of experience using technology to reach business objectives and eliminate barriers to business growth.

Before his career in IT, Michael was a professional alpine climber.  He spent over seven years in the highest peaks of the world and was the deputy expedition leader for an expedition to the South Face of Annapurna in 1999.  He has learned what it takes to prepare oneself for large challenges and has taken those experiences and translated them into his successful career in IT.

Today, Michael spends most his time speaking in front of C-level executives and other business groups around the U.S. on the how to integrate IT and business.  He brings his experience in strategy and execution from alpine climbing to the world of strategic IT automation and execution using dynamic IT concepts and the Citrix Delivery Center products.

 

 

I am very pleased that Michael is joining the team here at PublicSpeakingforGeeks.com. Michael has a wide variety of experience in technology and blogs a great deal about the lessons he learns each day in the field. The technology experience and his extensive moutain climbing background make Michael a very interesting person to know.

 

 

I am looking forward to seeing Michael’s cotnributions to the site.

 

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Seven Questions from ethos3

Posted by Barry Flanagan on Aug 6th, 2008
2008
Aug 6

 

Ethos3, the winner of last year World’s best Presentation Contest on SlideShare.net and the driving force behind the recent Presentation Design Tennis, asked me last week to do a blog interview with them.

Here are the Seven Questions -

 

1.  What was the inspiration behind Public Speaking for Geeks?

2.  You obviously have done a lot of public speaking in your 15 years  in the technology field.  What is the greatest public speaking lesson  you have learned thus far?

3.  How important is story as it relates to the world of presentations?

4.  What is your definition of Presentation 2.0?

5.  Who is your favorite presenter?

6.  If you could offer one tip to a person who is opening PowerPoint  for the first time, what would it be?

7.  How important is right-brain thinking in your left-brain industry?

 

 

Follow this link to read "Seven Questions with Barry Flanagan".

 

 

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New Blogger at Public Speaking for Geeks

Posted by Barry Flanagan on Jul 30th, 2008
2008
Jul 30

 

Last I week I put out a call for new bloggers. I am pleased to announce that Hilari Weinstein has answered that call.

 

 

Hilari Weinstein is President-Elect of the Arizona Chapter of the National Speakers Association.  She has a Masters Degree in Speech Communication from The University of Texas at Austin and is a two-time Collegiate National Speaking Champion.Over the past eighteen years, Hilari has spent thousands of hours speaking and coaching others to craft powerful content and connect more effectively with their audience.

 

 

You can learn more about Hilari’s coaching and services at HighImpactCommunication.com

 

 

 

 

If you would like to join Hilari and I as bloggers at PublicSpeakingforGeeks.com, please contact me.

 

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Bloggers Wanted – Inquire Within

Posted by Barry Flanagan on Jul 15th, 2008
2008
Jul 15

 

I am looking for at least one co-author of this blog. I would like additional points of view to be available via the blog and more regular postings. Unfortunately I cannot post as often as I would like.

 

 

If you are a technical speaker who wants to share your thoughts and experience on publicspeakingforgeeks.com, please send me a description of yourself and your speaking and blogging experience via the contact form.

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