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Sharpen Your Skills

October 15, 2009

Health professionals communicate with consumers through many channels—from one-on-one counseling sessions to conferences, popular magazine articles, the Internet, and even TV programs. Given the vast number of conversation opportunities, you should take advantage of all them using skills we call the 3 P’s of Communication: Publishing, Presenting, and Primetime performance. Once you develop this repertoire of skills, you’ll be an effective communicator in any consumer conversation setting.

The First P: Publishing (a.k.a. Writing) (PDF)

Why does writing well matter?

Writing is a necessity. But writing well is an art and an asset. Mastering the art of writing well takes practice—a good investment of time and effort because it enhances your career. As author Bonnie Friedman puts it, “Successful writers are not the ones who write the best sentences…they are the ones who keep writing.” Furthermore, good writing skills may even provide more career opportunities since virtually every profession entails writing. Bottom line: everyone writes!

Your ability to express your ideas clearly and persuasively reflects in your writing. And you can always sharpen your current writing skills. You may begin by following the Four Basic Steps to Crafting “ICIC” Communications and exploring the Anatomy of an Effective Writing Style.

The Second P: Presenting (PDF)

What’s the secret of super presenters?

Seasoned public speakers get their skills from knowledge, desire, effort, and practice. If you want to create high-impact presentations, you have to cultivate a genuine interest in delivering your message to an audience, strive to learn the right techniques, and practice, practice, practice. Before you know it, you’ll be using your presentation skills and nutrition expertise often to spread the good word about food and nutrition!

Methods for High-Impact Presentations:

  • Jitter Management 101
  • Tailoring to Your Audience
  • Techniques for a Smooth Topic Flow
  • Pre-presentation Checklist
  • Cultivating an Engaging Speaking Style
  • Hints for Powerful PowerPoint
  • Surviving the Q&A

The Third P: Primetime (a.k.a. Managing the Media) (PDF)

Why work with the media?

The media can take your nutrition message to thousands of people instantly—local and business community leaders, legislators, and the general public. Effective relations with the local and national media will help you as a professional, your state affiliate association(s), and enhance public recognition of your individual or organizational capacity as a valuable and credible source of scientifically-based food and nutrition information.

To maximize these advantages, you’ll have to know the art of communicating a story to reporters and editors from mainstream publications and networks.

Media Guidelines:

  • How To Create Stories that Sell
  • Pitching Your Story
  • Mastering the Art of the Sound Bite
  • Dealing with Difficult Questions
  • The Power of Props
  • Insider Secrets for Successful Interviews
  • Becoming a Sought-after Media Resource

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