What Martial Arts Belt Are You When It Comes To Presentations?

How well can you kick butt at presenting? I have videos and quizzes below; let us find out how much you know presentations and what belt you rank. Take notes while watching the videos to see what the mistakes or improvements are then take the quizzes to test your knowledge.  Please leave comments on the page to let me know what you think!

Delivering a bad presentation – spot the mistakesYoutube.com. University of Bedfordshire, 6 Jan. 2012. Web. 13 Apr. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATfY8dvbuFg&gt;.

Did you cringe as much as I did watching that video? Did you see any mistakes that were happening with this presentation? If so, then take this quiz and see where you rank in kicking presentation butt.

Presenter Quiz:

https://www.playbuzz.com/haleyt26/what-not-to-do-in-a-presentation

Power Point Quiz:

https://www.playbuzz.com/haleyt26/what-should-not-be-in-a-power-point

How well did you do? If you scored as a Black belt, then you are on the right track of kicking presentation butt, if you scored Blue belt then that just means you have a couple more things to learn!, if you scored White belt then my friend this blog is here for you. Take these skills and learn how to make yourself a Black belt when it comes to presentations! Here is a video of what a good presentation looks like. Take notes and see what you notice the differences are.

Delivering a good presentation – identify the good techniquesYoutube.com. University of Bedfordshire, 6 Jan. 2012. Web. 13 Apr. 2017. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5utoLhjUuAI&gt;.

If you are still not sure you got everything, check your notes with the cheat sheet below mark off what you got right. If you have the information down, try retaking the quizzes again!

Presenter Mistakes:

  • Does not have the technology prepared or know how to use the equipment when it is their turn to present.
  • Did not introduce herself
  • Was playing on her phone and taking a drink at the beginning of the presentation.
  • Presenter is facing the presentation screen and not the audience.
  • Presenter is reading from the slides instead of using it as reminder points.
  • Presenter has her arms crossed while talking.
  • Volume is too low or too fast.
  • No eye contact or scanning of the room to keep connected to the audience.
  • Audience did not have time to ask questions or receive answers.

Power Point Mistakes:

  • Bad choice of background color, and font color.
  • Inconsistency of images, spacing and fonts. (not professional or uniform throughout)
  • Overcrowded slides
  • Irrelevant & unprofessional pictures along with unnecessary and unprofessional animations/transitions.
  • No reference list at end for her citations.

Presenter Improvements:

  • Presenter introduces herself and her topic
  • Faces the audience instead of the board
  • Uses good volume and speed throughout the presentation
  • Moves hands but in a non-distracting way.
  • Does not read every point off the slides, only looks at slide to read the examples.
  • Breaks away from looking at the slide to make eye contact.
  • Gives the audience time to answer her questions before giving the answer.
  • Gives more time for audience to ask questions before ending presentation
  • Ends presentation with a positive attitude and conclusion.
  • Presentation is engaging the audience

Power point improvements:

  • Uniform slide colors (not too dark or too light)
  • Uniform font size and colors (does not blend into the background, easy to read from a distance)
  • Examples in presentation are a different color to highlight the point. (does not distract or blend with the background color)
  • Slides are not overcrowded
  • Great use of bullet points
  • Did not use unnecessary or unprofessional images
  • Did not use unnecessary or unprofessional animations/transitions.
  • Moved through slides at an even pace

 

Did you score better this time? If so then great! You are on the right track to being a Black belt at presentations! Take this information with you to help determine between good and bad presentations from here on out.

 

By: Haley Thompson, Business Major- IUPUC.

 

Ad Web Audience Targeting

Defining and targeting an audience are vital steps in great communication.  In publications, the ads are an excellent representation of who the targeted audience is.  Websites of these publications also target an audience but with an added dimension, the ability to individually target the viewer (audience.)  The ads vary by the choices selected within the publication website thus, redefining the audience.

Forbes website was the chosen publication to illustrate this changing targeted audience.  On the homepage of Forbes, the ads are geared toward a well-defined target group.  The initial ads were for Wall Street Journal; government tax programs; CD bank rates; oil dividends; filmmaking courses; and senior cell phone plans.  Together, these ads are for older wealthy businessmen. These are representative of the homepage initial ads.  The target audience is towards one who is interested in financial issues of taxes, CD notes, dividends, and business news from the WSJ…a businessman of diverse monetary concerns.  Definitely, the “senior plan” refers to an older generation.  The filmmaking courses also reinforce the older target group with an advertisement for a new hobby or starting a new business.  This is an extremely focused target audience.

Having the advantage of real-time viewing, websites can narrow the target audience.  When a viewer chooses a selection, a story or an article, the site chooses ads focusing on the audience’s interests.  If the chosen article deals with businesses with negative issues then the ads may change to customer service aids for businesses, insurance ads, or company improvement ads.  Relating the ads to the different types of articles narrows the targeted audience.

Another audience-targeting dimension of websites is third party advertising, directly targeting the individual viewer.  Third party advertising is advertisers which monitor viewers’ web surfing on their computers.  Directing ads of the real-time viewer’s interests allows the publication to broaden its audience.  These viewer-interest ads frame the articles with familiar and personal target ads.  Even though these ads may not have any connection with the article or the publication, the audience is familiar with these ads.  This frame may keep them reading the articles.  This allows for various changes so the targeted audience is the viewer even if the viewers do not fit the original targeted audience.  A young want-to-be businesswoman planning to start her own business would now be a targeted audience.  This real-time changing redefines the target audience as the current viewer to keep them interested in the publication even if they may not initially seem to be the audience targeted.

Concluding, this publication’s ads were aimed at a senior population of wealthy businessmen.  In general, this is the overall targeted audience but with websites drawing in different audiences with a specific article, the website uses ads to include the new audience in real-time viewing.  This advantage allows websites to reframe the site to include the viewer.  This is the magic of website ads – framing articles with advertising content this viewer is interested in seeing.

By Kentrina Freeman, Liberal Arts Major – IUPUC

Ad Web Audience Targeting

Defining and targeting an audience are vital steps in great communication.  In publications, the ads are an excellent representation of who the targeted audience is.  Websites of these publications also target an audience but with an added dimension, the ability to individually target the viewer (audience.)  The ads vary by the choices selected within the publication website thus, redefining the audience.

Forbes website was the chosen publication to illustrate this changing targeted audience.  On the homepage of Forbes, the ads are geared toward a well-defined target group.  The initial ads were for Wall Street Journal; government tax programs; CD bank rates; oil dividends; filmmaking courses; and senior cell phone plans.  Together, these ads are for older wealthy businessmen. These are representative of the homepage initial ads.  The target audience is towards one who is interested in financial issues of taxes, CD notes, dividends, and business news from the WSJ…a businessman of diverse monetary concerns.  Definitely, the “senior plan” refers to an older generation.  The filmmaking courses also reinforce the older target group with an advertisement for a new hobby or starting a new business.  This is an extremely focused target audience.

Having the advantage of real-time viewing, websites can narrow the target audience.  When a viewer chooses a selection, a story or an article, the site chooses ads focusing on the audience’s interests.  If the chosen article deals with businesses with negative issues then the ads may change to customer service aids for businesses, insurance ads, or company improvement ads.  Relating the ads to the different types of articles narrows the targeted audience.

Another audience-targeting dimension of websites is third party advertising, directly targeting the individual viewer.  Third party advertising is advertisers which monitor viewers’ web surfing on their computers.  Directing ads of the real-time viewer’s interests allows the publication to broaden its audience.  These viewer-interest ads frame the articles with familiar and personal target ads.  Even though these ads may not have any connection with the article or the publication, the audience is familiar with these ads.  This frame may keep them reading the articles.  This allows for various changes so the targeted audience is the viewer even if the viewers do not fit the original targeted audience.  A young want-to-be businesswoman planning to start her own business would now be a targeted audience.  This real-time changing redefines the target audience as the current viewer to keep them interested in the publication even if they may not initially seem to be the audience targeted.

Concluding, this publication’s ads were aimed at a senior population of wealthy businessmen.  In general, this is the overall targeted audience but with websites drawing in different audiences with a specific article, the website uses ads to include the new audience in real-time viewing.  This advantage allows websites to reframe the site to include the viewer.  This is the magic of website ads – framing articles with advertising content this viewer is interested in seeing.

By Kentrina Freeman, Liberal Arts Major – IUPUC

How Language Changes and New Words Are Created

The evolution of language is an interesting thing. It happens every day in every culture. From Shakespearean language to the abbreviated text message, language is capable of evolving in extraordinary ways. There are new words appearing everyday making it difficult to understand how they change. Now there are programs that are constantly scanning the web for new words and phrases it has become easier for language to be tracked and expanded. With new words appearing everyday it can become difficult to understand how they evolve.

Over time all languages change. In early history, language changed due to migration, colonization, and invasions. As of recently language has been evolving due to new technologies, products, industries and experiences that require new words. When you use a new word you are inspiring change in the way we use language. With each individual using the language in his or her own way it also helps to change how we use language.

The change in language happens in different ways. Meanings of words change as the cultures evolve. When sounds interact it may change the way they originally sounded and were used. Words are then created from different sounds interacting. Those words are then added to sentences to express new or old meanings.

Adding new words to the dictionary takes time. The Oxford Dictionary uses the Oxford English Corpus and the Oxford Reading Programme. The Oxford English Corpus is a collection of texts of written or spoken language presented in electronic form. The Oxford English Corpus tracks and records what new words are being used. It also includes the context in which they are used. This helps to find new trends in usage and spelling. The Oxford mainly searches the World Wide Web (WWW). It scans text from academic journals, novels, newspapers, magazines, blogs, emails and social media.

The Oxford Reading Programme is also a key aspect in adding new words to the dictionary. The Reading Programme is an electronic collection of sentences or short extract taken from a large variety of writing. Anything from scientific journals to music lyrics are collected. While the Reading Programme scans the WWW and collects this data while an international network of readers look for new words and meanings or other language changes.

Over the last five years the Oxford Dictionary had added quite a few new words. It includes:

  • Binge-watch
  • Neckbeard
  • Hot mess
  • YOLO
  • Cray

Although new words are added to the dictionary every year, new definitions of words already in the dictionary are being added as well. A new meaning for brick was recently added to the dictionary in reference to a large smart phone that is typically an earlier model that had limited functionality.

Language is always changing and becoming something new. People are still able to communicate with one another. As technology becomes more advanced so does the language and the ways we use it. Today we are a multimedia society. We abbreviate words and communicate without actually having to make a sound. Maybe in 30 years we wouldn’t even have to do that. With change always happening language must adapt quickly for those who use it.

By: Theresa Hickey, Accounting Major – IUPUC

http://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/linguistics/change.jsp

http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us

“Liberal” and “Conservative”: The effects of labels and language on Government.

Have you ever asked yourself way politics have so many different ways of grouping political groups?  Why do Democrats and Republicans often get called by some label other than Democrats and Republicans?  Why does it matter what words are used to describe any given group?  All of this shows the power that language can have on how individuals view each other.

Here is an example of how just the simple words used to describe a situation can change every assumption that is made about the situation.

If a group of individuals are describe as wearing similar baggy clothing and hanging out downtown in a large metropolitan area conclusions will be drawing as to this being some form of a gang and thus being in a “gang” they must be criminals.  Now if that same group of individuals are described as wearing keikogi (traditional Japanese martial arts uniform) and waiting outside of a large sporting complex on the weekend of a martial arts tournament a completely different conclusion will be drawn.  These individuals will no longer be viewed as a “gang” and therefore the concern of them being criminals will be removed.

As can be seen the words used to describe the clothing as well as the location of the individuals changed the picture that was painted.  Giving different details on both the clothing and the location allows one to understand more of the picture.

Now looking at American politics and you have 3 major groups’ Democrats, Republicans, and Independent.  Given the United States was formed after a war for independents from English rule and with the government structured as a democratically elected republic.  That puts all three groups’ labels at the very core of the nation’s identity.

Just like the first two major political groups of the Federalist and the Anti-Federalist names were picked with the soul proposes of shaping populist views.  The Federalist group was formed to gain support for the replacement of the Articles of Confederation with a new stronger government with more powers of a central government as the current government lack the power needed to insure the peace and tranquility that the general society wanted.  The group that formed to express fear over the increasing power of the government under the proposed government was named by the Federalist as the Anti-Federalist.  The naming of the opposing group as Anti-Federalist which was done by the Federalist group allowed the Federalist to argue that this group was against the constitution and therefore a better government, as opposed to the idea that this group was for a better government than that Articles of Confederation just not the government that was purposed under the Federalist idea.  Therefore from the start of the American government language has always played a very important role.  So how does the labels of liberal and conservative affect today’s views of government.  For this the two terms need to be defined.  So what does the term liberal mean, as defined by dictionary.com liberal means;

“Favorable to or in accord with concepts of maximum individual freedom possible, especially as guaranteed by law and secured by governmental protection of civil liberties”

So by using the label as liberal a group will appear to be for increasing the degree of freedoms individuals have and therefore will have good populist support.  If “liberal” is for individual freedoms than what does conservative mean.  For this we shall return to dictionary.com to define conservative;

“Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions etc, or to restore traditional ones, and to limit change.”         

So if a conservative is for limited change and the US was founded as a free nation then both a liberal and a conservative still want freedom.  Therefore neither label by itself has a negative effect on the groups’ populist view.

However the liberal wanting to have the government insure freedoms and the conservative not wanting change can cause issues.  The end effect of the two opposing view have driven more topics in to the view of the government.  Topics like gay marriage at the Federal level is a product of the Liberal side wanting to insure the right of gay marriage in all states by way of the Federal Government   This in turn resulting in a “Conservative” movement to make gay marriages illegal by law to preserve what is viewed as traditional values. 

The question is no longer ask if an issues is a Federal issue or a State issue it is view as the Federal Government is the absolute power of the land.  This changing view has allowed the common view of the Bill of Rights to be a document that gives freedoms to the people from the government as opposed to the document insuring that the people never gave the power to the government to address the topics protected by the Bill of Rights. 

The usage of labels can be seen throughout the political environment today to allow the depersonalization of a topic.  This can be as simple as Harry Reid using the term anarchist to describe the Tea Party as populist view of anarchy is a negative view.  The usage of extreme to describe the Tea Party as well as terms like anarchist has allowed the simple association of Tea Party to have a negative effect.  Even with the idea behind the name of Tea Party was to draw upon the ideas behind the Boston Tea Party.  The term Tea in Tea Party was an acronym for Taxed Enough Already.

The Occupy Wall Street movement also used the label 1% to describe individuals with large income and wealth.  The usage of this label allowed that subgroup to be viewed as not the same as the other 99%.   This allowed populist support for the Occupy Wall Street movement as it is the voice of the 99%. Therefore if you did not support them the result was that you had to be part of the 1% that caused all the problems. 

The usage of labels in government and politics at all levels allow the alienation of any person that does not agree with the matter at hand.  The health care reform law which is named the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” allows any argument against it to sound like an argument against protecting patients and making insurance health care cost affordable.  Using the label Obamacare it now changes the argument to one between the President’s ideal and the ideals’ of others. 

The 1986 Firearm Owners Protection Act sounds like a law to protect gun owners but the law ban the sale machine gun made after May of 1986 to individuals.  The law also changed the rules around the inspection of gun stores.  Any argument against this act would appear to be an argument not to protect firearm owners.   Then there is the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act which requires background checks on all firearm not just handguns purchases thru a licensed dealer.  This was a restriction of the second amendment to the U.S. Constitution but once again any argument against the act would appear to be one that supported handgun violence. 

 An additional example of how labeling is used is the “Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program” which is the current name for the food stamp program.  This program gives money to individual to purchase prepackaged edible foods but does not require the food to have any given nutrition valve.  Therefore this program can be used to purchase thing like soft drinks and junk food.  To top it off this program is funded by the “Food, Conservation, and Energy Act” which is then called the “farm bill”.  If an individual tried to add requirement that any food purchased under the aforementioned program have some degree of nutritional value than then the opposing side could claim that this individual do not support the farm bill this  would sound like the individual did not support American Farmers.

In the end one has to assume that any word spoken or written by a person involved with politics was choosing to paint the picture that person wanted painted.  A reporter may try not to “spin” the news that is covered but the simple act of choosing which part of news to cover can have an effect on what the picture of the world looks like.  

 

Should Cursive Writing Be Taught in Schools?

As of right now, 41 states do not require cursive writing to be a part of their curriculum (“5 Reasons Cursive Writing”). That is far too many states in my opinion. There are many reasons as to why cursive is important and necessary to teach in elementary school.

Since Technology has increased drastically, many people think that teaching cursive writing is a waste of time. However, cursive motivates the brain. When writing in this form it improves the dynamic interplay of the left and right cerebral hemispheres, assists in creating neural pathways, and improves mental effectiveness (Hatfield).

Cursive uses different hand muscles and activates different parts of the brain that neither typing nor printing can do. For a more beneficial way to further the development of motor skills, children should be between the ages of 7 and 8 (“5 Reasons Cursive Writing”). Teaching children repetition by encouraging the force needing to be applied to the pencil and paper, positioning the pencil on the paper at the right angle, and motor planning to form writing each letter smoothly from the left to right creates physical and special awareness to write. Repetition also creates neural foundation of sensory skills to perform everyday tasks such as tying shoes, picking up objects, reacting, buttoning, and note-taking (Hatfield).

By learning cursive, it gives children the opportunity to better understand and know the alphabet. If they are only taught English in one form, print, then they only get that one chance of learning and memorizing the alphabet. It also gives a clear understanding of how letters are formed and that can also improve on printing as well (“5 Reasons Cursive Writing”).

Some children write sloppy in print that it is hard to determine where one word ends and another begins. However, cursive requires children to write from left to right so letters join together in correct sequence, which makes it easier to read. In cursive, it allows the child to see words as a whole, instead of separate letters, and makes it easier to check for spelling. After repetition of the use of cursive, the hand acknowledges the spelling patterns through movements that are repeated in spelling (Hatfield).

If schools take away cursive writing, students will not be able to read or write important documents. Many of the historical documents are written in cursive. Some of these documents are translated into print online but there are still some that are not. Without knowing cursive, children will miss out on our history and even read important letters from grandparents or great-grandparents. The older generation use cursive daily and if kids do not learn how to read it then they will miss out on certain things (Hatfield).

Cursive writing is a unique form of writing that can only be read by those who have been taught to write it. Using this form of writing is how we sign our own important documents such as checks, contracts, opening bank accounts, etc. With that being said, there are many important reasons why cursive should be a requirement to be taught in schools.

By Taylor Seaborn, Business Major – IUPUC

Works Cited

“5 Reasons Cursive Writing Should be Taught in School | Concordia University – Portland online.” Concordia University’s Online Education                           Degrees | Online Masters in Education. Web. 12 Sept. 2013. http://education.cu-portland.edu/blog/curriculum-instruction/5-reasons-cursive-writing-should-be-taught-in-school/.

Hatfield, Iris. “Teaching Cursive Handwriting Tips Cursive Workbooks .”Teaching Cursive Handwriting Tips Cursive Workbooks Penmanship .                           Memoria Press, n.d. Web. 12 Sept. 2013. http://www.newamericancursive.com/learncursive.

Maintain the Message

Properly communicating the company message is the responsibility of everyone within an organization, from the receptionist on up to the CEO.  But how do you ensure that the person answering the phones is speaking the party line?

To guarantee a consistent message tape answers to frequently asked – and crucial questions – near the main phone bank.  But don’t post and forget it!  Check it on a monthly basis and update as necessary.  In challenging economies, information often grows stale quicker than you can say audit.

Also, provide updated facts and figures on a regular basis.  Communicate any noteworthy information to the receptionist and his/her backup ASAP – sometimes their need to know is actually more immediate than middle managers who aren’t necessarily speaking with the public and customers on a daily, if not hourly, basis.

Additionally, an intranet is a great tool for spreading the word to everyone while maintaining a consistent message.  For it to work and be effective, however, someone needs to commit to keeping it updated on a regular basis.  Also, the information needs to be pertinent, otherwise employees will soon recognize it as a waste of time and will readily drop it out of their information line up.

Last but not least, don’t forget those all important water cooler conversations.  Monitor the company grapevine and if the message you hear is NOT consistent with the message you want, it may be time to make a more concerted effort to communicate with employees.  Remember, if YOU don’t provide the information, someone else will.

– Robin Fritz, Adjunct Lecturer, Division of Business, Indiana University-Columbus

What is an elevator speech and how do I give one?

An elevator speech is just that, an elevator speech.  This is the type of speech that you would give to a potential employer that you have been trying to get an interview with as you catch them getting in the elevator or walking down the hall.  An elevator speech has also been called an “elevator pitch”.  You may use this kind of speech to sell your product or services to a potential buyer or client.  You want this speech to be no longer than the ride in the elevator, which can be anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes, and you need to really be able to sell yourself in the time that it takes to get from the first floor to the top floor or vice versa.  Your elevator speech needs to be clear, consistent, compelling, and to the point.

Tips on writing an effective elevator speech:

  1. Know your audience. What are they looking for?
  2. Know yourself.   Why do they want you or whatever it is you are trying to sell?
  3. Make it exciting!  Make them think this is best the best thing they could ever have!
  4. Write it down and perfect it.  Eliminate useless information and keep it short and to the point.  It shouldn’t be more than 90 words long.
  5. Practice, practice, practice and more practice!  You want to have your elevator speech memorized so you can give it effectively and in the moment.

Here is an example of an elevator speech for a student trying to get a job:

“Hi, my name is Mary Jones. I am currently a sophomore student attending ABC college. My major is in business with a minor in art. I have volunteered with the student credit union throughout my first and sophomore year at college.

Last summer I completed an internship with The Museum of Modern Art, and I’m hoping to find an internship in finance this summer in the Boston area. I have always had an interest in art and I’m also finding that I have a knack for business. In the future I’m hoping to combine these two very different disciplines and find myself a career that includes them both.”

Here is an example of an elevator speech of someone trying to sell their services:

“I am Joe Smart and I am a partner at BPK&Z, a large local CPA and consulting firm. While we do the audit and tax work like everyone else, our real niche is some very high end work – serious tax savings, business valuations and litigation support, significantly improving business processes, closely held business advice, that sort of thing.”

You never know when you might need an elevator speech but having one prepared just might land you that dream job or top client!!!

By Tacita Dockins, Business Major, IUPUC

works cited:

http://www.ingenuitymarketing.com/pdfs/freetools/Ingenuity-ElevatorSpeeches.pdf

http://internships.about.com/od/networking/g/elevatorspeech.htm

Pros and Cons of Online Classes

When students register for classes at the beginning of their college education, many are faced with the question, “Should I take any online classes?” To some, this is an immediate yes or no reply, but others may not know or understand the pros and cons of online classes. Online courses generally consist of uploaded lectures from the instructor, written assignments that are submitted online, and the availability for quizzes and exams to be administered through an Internet connection. A strong Internet connection is vital to successfully completing an online course.

Pros

  • Flexibility & freedom

Students are given flexibility and freedom in terms of when and where they complete the requirements for the class. Students can complete the course in the comfort of their home, even while sitting on the couch in their pajamas!

  • Learn at your own pace

Students are able to learn at their own pace. This is an advantage because it allows the student to re-watch lectures and progressively work on assignments.

  • Save time and money from travel expenses

Students will save time and money associated with traveling to on-campus classes.

  • Use of technology

Students will learn new forms of technology. Technology skills are extremely marketable when applying for jobs.

Cons

  • Time management

Students must have good time management skills to succeed.

  • Technology Failures

Technology is not always reliable, so students should be cautious of procrastination. For example, Internet and electricity may be down for some reason in the area, not allowing the student to submit assignments on time. Also, students need to be aware that computers may crash, leaving them with no way to complete the assignments.

  • No face-to-face interaction

Online classes do not allow room for face-to-face interaction with other students or the instructor. However, some instructors offer office hours for one-on-one sessions if necessary. Also, unless a chat room is enabled for the course, there is generally a delayed response when communicating with the instructor, especially if the student and instructor have different schedules.

To sum it up, there are a variety of pros and cons when comparing online classes to traditional on-campus classes. It is important for students to know their learning styles and time management capabilities before committing to taking online courses. To some, online courses could bring relief to their heavy course load, but they could be a heavy burden to those who are technology illiterate and those who lack time management skills.

By Katie Shaffer, Business Major – IUPUC