The Six Habits of Executive Presence

A wise colleague of mine described Executive Presence as:

“The water leaders swim in to get things done. It’s not optional. It’s essential for respect and trust”.

KineticFuture are experts in coaching the ‘how’ of EP one to one and in groups. Today I’m going to share with you The 6 Practical Habits of EP. This is a distillation of the KF coaching method for your presentation communication.

6 Habits of Executive Presence in Presentation Communication

  1. It’s all about the audience – flex to their needs and perspective you’re already halfway there.
  2. Integrity & expertise – how are you going to demonstrate this?
  3. Authentic passion & belief – your topic may not set your pulse racing but you’ll have to find something that motivates you
  4. Warm authority under fire – there is a pivot point between warmth and authority. You’re looking to find the right blend for the situation and culture.
  5. Listens to understand – the audience needs to feel this is a two-way conversation and you have to truly understand what they are thinking.
  6. Tailored value messages and strong storytelling – underpinning your confidence is knowing the value you bring to the other person and being able to articulate it. Strong storytelling will build engagement and memorability.

On our courses we’ll work with you on your physicality (vocal energy, body language etc.) blended with communications strategy plus you’ll develop your story ready to present. All focused on a real work situation. Your colleagues will also coach you and you’ll learn to self-coach too.

We have worked for 19 years with demanding companies including Abbvie, The ABI, Barclays, GSK, The Open University, Novartis, Mars, MSD, Reckitt Benckiser and Vertex.

Do call or email me if you’d like to know more. Everyone can develop their Executive Presence with dedication and good coaching. And the rewards are great for you and your teams.

Deliver a Jaw Dropping Moment

Everyone remembers where they were and what they were doing when the tragic news of 9/11 broke but we often can’t remember what we did yesterday.


Because our brains are wired to recall emotionally dramatic events (positive as well as negative) and ignore the mundane and ordinary.

In a similar way, presentations that include an emotionally charged event create a heightened state of emotion in the audience that makes them much more memorable and enjoyable. This can be done by telling a story, using props and images, or sharing some unexpected statistics.

Some of our favourite examples of presentations that include extreme jaw dropping moments include:

  • Bill Gates – when he released a jar of mosquitos into an audience in his Ted talk on some of the world’s biggest problems.
  • Dr Jill Bolte Taylor – when she brought out a real human brain in her talk about her personal experience of having a stroke.
  • Hugh Herr – his Ted talk on the development of bionics that ‘let us run, climb and dance’ (watch it below). In particular, the moment at the end of his talk when Adrianne Haslet-Davis, a victim of the 2013 Boston marathon bombing comes on stage for her first dance since the attack.

The audience response to the speaker’s dramatic action speaks for itself. They look interested, enthralled, alive… and some of their jaws are actually dropping open!

Try and apply this to your own presentations. You may be presenting on something your audience have seen many times and the topic may not be nearly as emotional as these talks but wouldn’t it be good to make the effort to surprise them? They’re more likely to remember what you’ve said if you do!

If you would like to know how to use positive psychology and neuroscience within your own presentation we can show you how – contact us today.

Ruby Wax Shows Us How

Authenticity beats perfection every time when you’re presenting.

Have a look at this great presentation by comedian Ruby Wax on talking about mental health issues and your brain. There are a number of reasons this is a great presentation for me, including:

1. The talk clearly means a great deal to her as she’s suffered from depression herself.  Ask yourself how we know it genuinely matters to her?

2. She uses an excellent opener which involves the audience in an amusing and personal way.  It nails the key message and the big theme for the presentation

3. She makes a complex subject simple

4. Her white coat, homemade brain and signs were great fun and much more engaging than if she’d just used formal diagrams

5. Her pace, emphasis and vocal energy are just what you’d expect from a talented comedian and writer

Essentially, a wonderful presentation by Ruby – there are lots of ideas here you could adapt for your own presentations, give it a go!

Surprise Me

A mountain guide skiing the Vallée Blanche Glacier saw a man fall into a deep crevasse.  His party lowered down rescue ropes and pulleys into the ice to get him out.  But the man they pulled out was not the same man they’d seen falling in.  It was someone else who had fallen in earlier that day.

This is a story I heard yesterday and I’ll never forget. It was a great way for the Chamonix ski resort to tell people like me not to go to this amazing 20 mile long glacier without a guide.

Our brains love surprising stories, parables and rhymes. They help us remember and to pass on stories to others which reinforces the message again.

When you next present and you’re short of time ask yourself “How can I surprise the audience?”   It’s a fast way of adding some instant ‘kerpow’ to your presentation and helping them to remember your key message.

Think about what has been most memorable for you this week and why?  It’ll give you clues of how you can add impact to your own storytelling and presentation.

Was it a story as a warning of what not to do, an inspiring story of what’s possible, a David and Goliath incident, a personal experience story, a ridiculous factoid, a demonstration or something in the news that day?

In case you’re wondering, both men were rescued and came out of the glacier alive.

This is an extract from KineticFuture training course materials. ‘Power Pack Presentation Toolbox. How to generate impact in 7 quick steps’.

If you’re interested in advanced business communications coaching using skills from positive psychology and theatre please contact us. We run group and one to one courses around the world.

Brene Brown: Vulnerability

Brené Brown studies human connection – our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity. A talk to share.