On June 17, 2011, I am a guest speaker for the Arizona Credit Union League, where approximately 110 credit union volunteers, executives, management and operational employess will gather at the Radisson Fort McDowell Scottsdale, Arizona.
The theme of the conference is fittingly, A New Journey, Don't Stop Believing. The last several years have been a challenging time for all financial service institutions including credit unions. I am a humorous guest speaker for the credit unions to help them embrace levity in order to decrease stress, maintain balance and build positive perspectives during challenging times.
Due to financial cut backs, everyone is pressed to do more with less. Since the financial crisis, people aren't borrowing so credit unions aren't getting loans out. Credit unions have had to cut staff and budgets have dwindled.
I spoke with Jaquetta Ward, director of Adminstration & Education for the league. She explained the difference between a credit union and a traditional bank is credit unions are non profit institutions. They do not have shareholders, so when they make a profit they give it back to members.
Credit unions have a basic philosophy of people helping people. They make the best effort possible to truly serve customers to improve their financial future. Typically, you get a cozy credit union experience versus a big bank impersonal one.
I am a guest speaker for the credit union AGM on a humorous program called This Would be Funny If it Wasn't Happening to Me! My objective is to renew enthusiasm and passion for financial services professionals who play such an important role in our community. We will explore how humor decreases stress, balances perspective and delivers renewed enthusiasm in changing times.
Do you Need to Lighten Up? Click here to find out or For More Funny Speaker Financial services Resources
I very rarely use PowerPoint. When I do, I know I better have a back up plan.
Last week at a conference one of the keynote speaker’s presentations relied totally on PowerPoint. It did not work. She kept clicking towards the screen and staring at it and nothing. Uncomfortable silence. Ultimately she ended the session 30 Minutes early.
According to Alexi Kapterev there are a million power point presentations going on right now and over 50% of them are unbearable. Lots of people are killing each other with bad presentations right now.
According to Kapterev, A Good PowerPoint Presentation needs:
As an Event planner, When Speakers submit their presentations do they look like they have thought through these stages? Do they have a back up plan? Will they read the presentation right off the screen? Is it relevant to the audience?
Speakers should also be prepared for equipment failures and poor Internet connections. Decide in advance how you will handle a projection failure. If you are conducting a large session, you should use two projectors in case one fails.
Most presenters bring only one computer. If it crashes, the speaker should have a contingency plan, such as slides or a side show.
When I do use PowerPoint, their is a lot of preparation needed in advance. The computer must be checked. The Internet connection must be established. The projector must be focused. The lighting has to be adjusted. The sound quality has to be checked. And the meeting room often needs to be reconfigured.
All this clearly takes time, and it's very unprofessional to not to be completely ready at the beginning of a session. Make sure speaker show up early enough ( put it in the contract) to troubleshoot.
The act of play helps you shape and understand your world. If you played more and actively had fun for no reason but to enjoy it, how would you see the world differently?
Event planners search for ways to make meetings more memorable and fun. Companies crave ways to have fun at work. Conference venues look for ways to add levity and playfulness to events.
You can read forever about the virtues of play but to understand its power you have to experience it. Otherwise it's like having a dinner party and serving pictures of food. The experience is missing.
Play is a basic biological need like sleep and food. It's easy for children to play but much more difficult for adults.
Some people pride themselves on not giving themselves into play. These are serious people who have likely been rewarded their entire life for hard work. The only thing that counts for them is acheivement and when you are goofing around you are not accomplishing anything productive. However you are decreasing burnout, creating wellness, and dare i say altering your boring personality.
If joy is a natural state than why are so many people so miserable? Likely because they need to be convinced the power of play. Fed Up? Lighten Up!
Facebook: Life Interrupted and Forever Changed
The challenges with Facebook
My friend told her 28 year old sister about a party I am throwing for my brother and she said, Can you update me about it on facebook?
What? Why? You’re sitting right across from me. I’m telling you right now.
What is this obsession? Love it or not, social networking is here to stay.
I’ll Facebook You
The first time somebody said this to me I thought she was speaking Spanish. Eventually everybody started threatening this. Now I find it hard to remember the good old days, when it was so refreshing to actually have a real conversation over the phone. Even email now seems like outdated technology.
Is this like some new cult or something? I think the most annoying thing about Facebook is that everybody is using it; you feel pressured to join the crowd. Especially as a generation expert you see that change management in organizations has to sit up and notice social media is having a huge impact on this generation.
With numbers estimated as high as 70 million, Generation Y (also known as the Millennial) is the fastest growing segment of today’s workforce and social networks are the number one way they prefer to communicate.
The problem is Facebook is a loose social network; a "friend" on Facebook might be someone you'd barely recognize in real life. It is also largely uncensored and it’s not like face to face conversation people can hide behind their computer screen (or iPod) and have the confidence to say anything they like.
There are no real rules to facebook. Anyone can say anything and the world can hear it. Yikes! Is this really what they intended when they built this software? (Yes)
I watched a motivational speaker talk about generations and their was no mention of facebook and it's affects on organizations.
This technology is so powerful it has changed the way we communicate and build and maintain relationships. I have heard and experienced some great stories of how people have found each other and reconnected by facebook.
Negative people annoy me. If your going to be cranky than it's your choice but don't infect everyone around you with your sour disposition.
I chose to keep a positive attitude. This isn't always easy. Some days just plain suck and when i find myself wallowing, it takes work but i struggle to continue to see the positive.
I remind myself this is temporary or their is always something good in the bad (unless their is not).
Being positive takes effort. It doesn't magically take my troubles away or suddenly transform my world into dreamland. You have to be committed to being positive.
It is also not true that being positive distorts your perspective or makes you unrealistic. Instead it gives you more options to consider.
As a keynote speaker many people come up to me and say that negative people completely drain them and leave them feeling depressed and exhausted.
First thing to do is be aware of who the negative people are in your life. In a later blog i will discuss what to do with these life sucking forces but for now let's just pinpoint who they are.
If you feel you are attracting the undesireable into your life, recognize their negative patterns.
When you are around negative people you will experience:
A feeling of being demeaned or attacked
A feeling like you need to get away from them- fast
Your energy starts to deplete
Pay attention to what the person talks about, is it always negatively spun?
Mean people make life more complicated for you because they want to bring your life down to their level.
By the way you should not be hearing wedding bells, picking out china patterns or thinking about having kids with difficult duds unless you want to always be the motivator and never be cheered up.