28 Oct Success Story – Jacyl Shaw

jacylCheck out this inspiring story. It’s a real life account of how one person took some skills that actually work and achieved exciting results.


Jacyl Shaw
Director of Culture & Community Development, “Carlton Connect”
Melbourne Uni


I am the Director for an ambitious strategy to create an innovation district on the former Royal Women’s Hospital site in Carlton where talented people from business, government and universities can have high impact interactions.




What kind of presenting do you do at work?

In my current role to develop a suite of programs and activities to foster a culture of innovation at Carlton Connect and engage current and prospective partners, I present regularly to diverse organisations in community, government and industry. These include workshops, boardroom pitches, committees, conferences and subtly presenting ‘the vision’ over coffee in a café.


What prompted you to attend Michelle’s Persuasive Presentation Skills program?

I was fortunate to win a staff prize at the University for my engagement work, which offered a professional development experience as part of the award.  I love my role and the opportunities it provides me to engage with a broad range of people however I felt I could improve the way I tailored my communication to the diverse audiences.  A colleague recommended Michelle’s workshop and so I took up the challenge with 7 strangers!  It was one of the most practical, valuable and enjoyable 2 day workshops I have undertaken and have recommended to many others since.


How did Michelle’s program change your attitude to presenting in business?

Michelle’s course, although developed in a fun, non-frightening way, was actually quite scientific and rigorous in its 13 step-by-step systematic process and explanations.  It was not only about “how” to present in public but many of the ‘whys’: “why” does my heart race?, “why” is my mouth dry and palms sweaty?, “why” would the audience take time to listen?, “why” am I standing up in front of a room of strangers?.  These fresh perspectives changed my attitude to presenting in that it wasn’t just a task that had to be done but an opportunity to give something of value to people who had given their time to stop and listen to something I had to say.  It directly put me in the shoes of the listener and I am grateful now for each time I am given to present.


In general, what positive outcomes have you achieved from improving your presentation skills?

I believe many positive things have come from me completing Michelle’s Masterclass.   I often receive good feedback on my presentations, both from presentation organisers and audience members.  Often these testimonials become new speaking opportunities. I have also regularly asked to deliver the ‘vote of thanks’ at events! I also apply what I have learnt when I ‘pitch’ ideas and opportunities through emails and I find I receive good feedback and responses from this style.  Last year I gave presentations in Bangkok, Barcelona, Brno and Prague and each time I religiously applied the 13 Michelle Steps and all with positive outcomes!


In what specific ways have your presentation skills improved since completing Michelle’s training?

I am now more conscious of how audiences receive and digest information in diverse ways.  I am a visual learner but now I try and ensure my presentations include cues and language that assists those that prefer other cues.

Further, since the course I never put page numbers on my powerpoint slides and now I develop them with only a few words, more visuals and think of them as an aid and not ‘the’ presentation. I even blank the slide when it’s not needed!


What were your top three take aways from Michelle’s program?

  1. Think Do Feel
  2. Pace out those objections
  3. It’s not about you, it’s about the audience


And although Michelle didn’t specifically make this one of her 13 Steps I think she’d agree:  when presenting: 

‘Breathe, Smile & Enjoy !”

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Michelle Bowden is an authority on presentation & persuasion in business. Michelle is a CSP (the highest designation for speakers in the world), co-creator of the PRSI (a world-first psychometric indicator that tests your persuasiveness at work), best selling internationally published author (Wiley), editor of How to Present magazine, producer of Michelle Bowden TV, and a regular commentator in print, radio and online media. Sign up for Michelle’s FREE How to Present magazine TODAY http://michellebowden.com.au

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