Margy Schaller runs a company called Laser Pointer Presentations. She works with people who want more bookings and business presenters who want to make their message stick. As a speaker, she shares a proven formula to create and present inspired content. In fact, she wrote the book, Formulate A Winning Presentation (available on Amazon). As a result of her content coaching, people often share they have more clarity of thought, more confidence in their material, and more impact and influence with their audience members. On a personal note, Margy loves to travel and just completed her first round the world trip last month.
VIDEO - DUwHF #1052 - Margy Schaller
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Howard: It's just a huge honor for me today to be podcast interviewing Margy Schaller, President of Laser Point Presentations. She works with people who want more bookings and business presenters who want to make their message stick. As a speaker, she shares a proven formula to create and present inspired content. In fact, she wrote the book that I'm holding right here, if you're on YouTube you can see it, Formulate a Winning Presentation, tools for dental and healthcare professionals to compose a talk with impact. Ryan, can we push that out on social media today? And it's available on Amazon. As a result of her content coaching people often share they have more clarity of thought, more confidence in their material, and more impact and influence with their audience members. On a personal note, Margy loves to travel and just completed her first round the world trip last month. Damn, where did you go?
Margy: I went to Budapest. I went to Prague. I went to Dresden, I went to Singapore and I went to China.
Howard: Wow, and what were you celebrating or was it some special event or ...
Margy: Well, the Budapest and Prague part, my husband and I just celebrated our ten year wedding anniversary, so that was our trip to ourselves and I actually, in addition to the work that I do with speakers, I'm a speaker myself and I was doing a three day communication program in Dresden and Singapore, and then my son is actually teaching English in China, so I got to go visit him.
Howard: Wow, where in China?
Margy: In Xi'an. I didn't know where that was, but essentially if you took an X and drew it straight through China, it's smack in the middle.
Howard: Well that's where I was born in Kansas, Wichita, Kansas. And we always said, we were not only the center of the United States but the exact center of the universe. But not many people agreed with this.
Margy: [inaudible 00:02:01] right.
Howard: Yeah, hey, if you give three-day presentations, you ought to make us an online CE course for Dentaltown on this.
Margy: I would love to. That would be a blast.
Howard: Yeah, we got about four hundred courses, one-hour courses on Dentaltown and they're coming up on a million views.
Margy: You are amazing. You're a rockstar.
Howard: Well, millennials they don't need to drive down to a brick and mortar place. Just like this, I feel perfectly fine podcasting you here. A lot of people in Phoenix just come by the home, but I mean millennial's just don't have any problem learning the information. They're sitting there on their iPhone, they throw it up on Apple TV, so they'd rather just take a course sitting in their favorite house or favorite chair and if they got to go to the bathroom they just pause it and then they don't have to take notes because they can just go back and rewatch it.
Margy: Yup, [inaudible 00:02:50]
Howard: If a lot of you are listening to this and you're wondering, well maybe you don't want to be a speaker, this applies to everything. This applies to talking to your patients chairside, this applies to presenting staff meetings and one of the biggest marketing strategies I've seen is when a dentist or an orthodontic office, once a month we'll have a lecture for the community or they'll go to nursing homes or retirement communities and give presentations on implants or Invisalign or whatever. We'll even talk about divorce. They say the three causes of divorce are money, sex, and substance abuse, but it's really not even those three it's about the fact that you're not communicating to each other. So communication is everything. If you could master the people skills, you don't need to learn Algebra, Calculus, Physics, and Geometry. I'd rather take an A in people skills any day of the week. So you worked for a lot of famous dentists, so well, tell us what you do?
Margy: Well, that's a great question. Really where I start with somebody is finding out what is it that they actually want people to do. And do you know when I ask people, speakers, seasoned speakers, what is the one thing you want somebody to do after they've heard you speak? People struggled with that question. And the trouble is, one of my most famous quotes people re-quote me on is that a confused mind always says no. And so if our strategy, whether in all the scenarios you were saying, whether it's patient education, whether it's a small study club or the big keynote guys from the podium, if we throw everything we know at them and hope that something sticks, the audience, I myself, we get overwhelmed, right? And when we get overwhelmed you're like, "I don't know what to do with all this. This is way too much information all at once," and our brain shuts down.
So my first and foremost goal with people is just to get clarity and if we can get clarity on what the single thing you want is for somebody to do as a result of hearing you speak, the rest is extra, the rest is gravy. So that really is my first and foremost thing that I work with my clients and I have a specific coaching process I take them through and that's really where the book was born. And then secondarily, I'm also a presentation designer, so I use a lot of Neuroscience principles and figure out ways to drive the right message home using the visuals.
Howard: So, I love that "a confused mind says no," and a lot of the dentists are giving a presentation. Well, if you're talking to a patient you want them to accept treatment. If you are talking to your staff meeting, you want the office to run better, faster, easier, higher quality. But when you're talking to a group of dentists, if you're lecturing they just got to get clarity on why they're out there. The speakers that were good knew who they were and they had a clarity of message.
Margy: Right, and so the people who came to hear them knew what that message was going to be and they came because they wanted more of that. They wanted to understand more about what that person had to say versus the person who says, "Come hear us speak on restorative dentistry." Okay, about what? And you sit in a talk and you get the whole history of restorative dentistry and then you get all the different options that you can do and then you get all the different possibilities about [comms? 00:06:34] and you walk away just going, "What was that? What am I supposed to do with that now?"
Howard: Now you cut your teeth at Zimmer, right?
Margy: I did. Zimmer Dental and I was running the CE department and that's where I fell in love with dentistry because the speakers that I worked with, they're so passionate and the myth out there is that speakers are making tons of money doing this and the reality is they're actually probably losing money. But they do it because they have a passion and they do it because they want to give back and I just loved working with them, different from other healthcare speakers I've worked with. But the challenge is that their expertise is what their expertise is. It is not in putting together stellar presentations. I mean my expertise isn't dentistry and I've been watching you for years. I have no idea how to do dentistry. So I saw a need there and I had the opportunity to really be of service to these really great thought leaders.
Howard: It is really weird because these dentists who own dental office and everything if you look at what our honorarium is, universe is what they could do in their dental office. I mean they got to be doing it for something other than money because if you would've stayed home, you would have woke up in your own bed. You'd driven three miles for work and you would have made all that money usually by lunchtime.
Howard: So they got to be passionate about something. But I want to go back to Zimmer for a second because the Wall Street Journal reported on March 2nd, 2018 that Zimmer Biomet Holdings considering selling their dental unit and that they retained Bank of America and Merrill Lynch advises on the possible divestment of Zimmer Biomet Dental. Why do you think they would be wanting to get out of that space?
Margy: That's above my pay grade, for sure. I do know that many of the orthopedic holding companies over the years have brought dental in because it seemed like a natural fit, but the business model of the orthopedics and all of the other extremities really is a different model. Those are huge capital investments versus dentistry, which is a very unique niche model. So if there's any kind of consideration on that, to me it would simply be just being able to keep better focus and that's back to what I do. Talk about focus.
Howard: Yeah, and it's funny because when you talk about implants, my pet peeve with a lot of the implant speakers is they went from one screen to two screens, now they're at three screens. I just can't imagine Steven Spielberg controlling the whole movie, ET or whatever or Saving Private Ryan, whatever, I couldn't imagine him wanting your heads to go the whole time. And you look at the audience from the back of the room, they look like they're watching a tennis match and I've never met Steven Spielberg, but I'm pretty damn sure he would say, that's not a good idea. Wouldn't he want you looking straight down the middle? And then he would move the image as opposed to you moving your head. What do you think of that two and now three screens?
Margy: You know I'll tell you two stories. Story number one was actually in my book, one of the people that I had the chance to interview and include some of his quotes was Dr. Joel Rosenlicht and in the book he talks about that he was an already international level speaker and he was doing a series of talks, one of which ended up in South America. And the organizer said, "Now you need to arrive the night before because I'm going to sit down and review your slide deck with you." And he said, "You're going to what? Don't you know who I am?" And so he arrived early in the day and he went to the conference in the afternoon before he met with the organizer and he looked up and he saw the quality, the high, high quality of the images that the other speakers already had.
And he realized right then and there that he needed to up his game. So when he met with the organizer, he went through and he said, "Nope, this is not going to meet our standards. This one's not, this one's not okay, this one will." So from that point on, he really learned the value of if you're going to show what excellent looks like, you have to show it visually. You have to show it clinically. You have to show it by your research. You can't just rest on your reputation. So that's thing number one. Thing number two is actually one of the pieces of brain research that I incorporate into a lot of my work is, there's something called the reticular activating system, the RAS, which is a piece of our brain that's basically like the air traffic controller. And what its job is, is to sort all the zillions of impulses that are coming at us every single second and decide what things deserve our attention and what things get put away.
So for example, many years ago, my daughter was a freshman at Fordham University, which is in the Bronx. And so I went and I spent the night with her for a couple of nights and that first night, man, oh man, I could not sleep a wink. The car horns were honking, the trains were going by, the radios were blaring out of people's cars. I couldn't sleep a wink. The second night I was woken up a couple of times, but by the third night, I slept right through the night. What was happening? What was happening was that first night that reticular activating system was grabbing a hold of every single thing going, danger, danger, danger. What's that? What's that? And the second night it was like, oh, maybe this isn't so dangerous, but there was a few extra loud noises that it paid attention to. And by the third night, it was used to it and it put it to the part of my brain that didn't even hear it.
That's what happens in presentations. When somebody does a presentation where every single slide is exactly the same with the title and the subheadings and the text or they have a series of case [inaudible 00:12:48]. Our brain actually sees that and goes, "Oh, I've seen this before. I don't really need to pay close attention." So there's something actually of value I think of forcing the brain to make those changes and to shift attention just to activate that part of our brain that's going to pay attention. Now like everything there's a danger and if what you're doing is ending up doing the complete ping pong match too fast and it's not done in a way that's thoughtful, anything could be overdone. But I don't know, I think the attention we're putting now towards the production value actually makes people take a little bit more time in saying, "Wow, this is something I should pay attention to."
Howard: You know one of the things that's always amazed me the most is how public speaking is so feared, and I've never understood that at all. In fact, they always say public speaking is the greatest fear on earth, but I don't think so because I've never been at a funeral and someone said, "Well, at least they're not public speaking." People always say, "I'd rather die than give a lecture." And then some of the biggest lecture names on the circuit are still completely nervous. I mean you're talking to them before the seminar and they're about ready to puke and I'm sitting there and thinking, "Damn, you've done this a hundred times." What do you think public speaking is so feared?
Margy: Nobody wants to fail. Nobody wants to be ashamed of something that they said or did. They don't want to be judged and it's a very, very vulnerable place. But I do have people frequently ask me like, "How do I get over that?" And I think that there's a couple of things, the first is when we approach it from a place of authenticity when we approach it from a place of we're just sharing what we know. When we approach a place of, "I'm just another person, but I happen to have this piece of expertise or information I'm going to share it with you." Then it's not like we're trying to put on something that we're not, but get to a place where you're trying to be bigger than you are or pretend like you know something you don't know or that you know everything. That's a scary place to be, so that's the first thing.
I think the second thing is, Catherine [inaudible 00:15:16] teaches the story of how we can work with that fear and she talks about a story about when she herself was a little girl and she went up on stage to go perform a piano recital and she stumbled and fell flat on her face and the whole audience gasped. And ever since then, every time she's walking up on stage, she says she has that same fear arise, but what she's learned to do is learn to anticipate it and to have a new tape in her head to play of a successful time she did it. So she'll say, "Oh, there's that scary memory. I'm going to replay the successful one when I got the standing ovation and rewire that fear moment." So it doesn't go away if that's where you're at, but you learn to manage it and you learn to embrace it really. And I don't know about you, Dr. Farran, but I'm a speaker myself and those fifteen minutes leading up to something I'm a little bit of a bundle of nerves and once I get there and once I connect, I love that place. I love working with people, I love coaching, I love teaching, I love speaking. But if I didn't have that fifteen minutes of that pre-anxiety, I'm not sure that I'd bring my best game. What do you think?
Howard: Yeah, I don't know, I think we're all different. I mean I've never had that issue. I don't know if it's because I'm socially retarded or well, I just have always assumed that humans are wild animals and that you can't please everyone. And I've never cared when someone said they didn't like my seminar or they didn't learn anything. It was like well, I mean what do you want me to do? I mean I can't please everyone. But you talked about your daughter, I always said that writing a book was like having a child and my gosh, it took you nine months to make your daughter. How long did it take you to make this book?
Margy: Almost two years.
Howard: Yeah, so, you could have had three kids in that amount of time. Tell us what was going on in your life and your journey that got you to write "Formulate a Winning Presentation," tools for dental and healthcare professionals to compose a talk with impact available on Amazon. Your book kind of lays out a nine-step process that basically has three primary pillars, your why, your big idea statement, your speaker self. Talk about your book.
Margy: Okay, thank you. Well, when I first started my company, and actually we're coming up on my five year anniversary, I'm very excited. When I first started my company, I found that I kept having the same conversation with people again and again and again, and it really came back to that business of what is that clarity that you want to drive? And so I started documenting it so that I could then make it an easier flow and in documenting it realized I think that this would be something anybody who's a speaker might want so that's the idea for a book. Now, one of the things that I decided was I am so privileged, I have relationships with people who are at the top of their game. I mean Linda Miles, right, and we talked about Joel Rosenlicht, Rachel Wall, Tanya Brown, these are big names in the dental industry and other people who might want to become speakers might not have access to them and they might not be able to ask the sort of questions that they'd want to ask. How did you get there? What did you learn along the way? What advice would you give your early self if you knew then what you know now? And so I asked them all of these questions and I wove their information through the book, so really the first part of the book is about the speakers. It's about their journey, it's about how did they get started and what lessons they learned along the way. From there then I go through this nine-step formula and the last third is all design tips. Something that people can actually take on their own and be able to use to design their slides so that they're outstanding.
But you talked about those three pillars and the one that is my intellectual capital, the one that I think really is a quick way that you can get to that clarity, is what I call speaker styles. So remember I told you that I had spent that time looking at what it was that I thought made some speakers more successful than others, and I said that I thought it was really down to do you know who you are? Well, the four speaker styles what I created start with what is the outcome that you want as a result of this talk? So number one is what I call the recruiter and the recruiter is somebody who has a product or a service or something that they want people to buy as a result of this.
Now that being said, I never ever advocate selling from the podium. I think that that's just not classy at all, but if your end game is that you have some product or service that you believe people will truly benefit from, of course, you're going to weave it into your talk in such a way that that is the natural conclusion, right? Whether it's consulting, whether you are an entrepreneur and you have a product, whatever that is. The second is what I call the inspirer and many of the speakers that I've worked with from Zimmer, [the thought 00:20:59] leaders, that's what they are because they are at the very top of their game. They can do things that an everyday dentist can't necessarily do and when they give a talk they know people can't do what they do from watching them for an hour, but here's their goal. They're hoping that by seeing this the audience will stretch their own goal posts. That they'll see what amazing could be and strive that much further.
The third speaker style is what I call the teacher and the teacher is somebody who actually does expect that people will know how to do what they do at the end of a talk. So I think of the training centers and the hands-on workshops where people are actually learning how to do the dental procedures or some of the practice management people who might be coming in and teaching people how to read a spreadsheet, how to deal with financial literacy. So their goal is to teach the thing and then the fourth is what I call the informer. Now the informer is the speaker who has the facts or the data or the internet coding regulatory rules and their goal is for people to know what all this is and how to use it. So I think of again, the Christine [Taxans? 00:22:20] who is teaching how to use the medical billing coding now. Why is it important and how do you use it?
Dr. Roy Shelbourne, what are the laws that we need to follow to stay out of jail and how do we do that? So each of these four different speakers’ titles, it's like a disk. Many people say, "Well, I'm all of those. I'm partly all of these." Well, of course, you are, but I believe if you pick one primary and then use that to help filter out all of the rest of the noise and just drive home your primary goal, the rest are going to happen organically. So I have a question based on that, which one do you think you are?
Howard: Well, when you said number three was a teacher in your book you call it a trainer, so teacher/trainer same synonym.
Howard: So number one was recruiter. Most consultants, salespeople are recruiters. These people believe their product or service will help the audience to enjoy an easier, more efficient, more profitable way of doing their business. I'm always trying to recruit them to join Dentaltown because I just can't imagine when I walked out of dental school that I could have had a quarter million dentists and hygienists and consultants. I mean to me, I saw Star Wars, what year did star wars come out? I think was I in high school. You remember what year Star Wars came out?
Margy: It had to have been in the early 80's, right, or even late 70's.
Howard: Yeah, I think it was late '70's because I graduated high school in 1980.
Howard: Yeah, 1977. So, if you would've told me at the end of that movie that when I was a Grandpa, I'd have a quarter million dentists in my pocket, I'd have said that you're crazy. Speaker number two, inspirer. These speakers are typically at the very top of their field and are the keynote speakers brought into wireless and major meetings. They know and we know that most people can achieve the results again, but in delivering the lecture they hope people will stretch themselves further than they have before. Well, I have to be somewhat of that because I've done keynotes in fifty countries. Speaker number ... trainer. These are the cleverest consultants who teach people how to actually do what they do. They work tirelessly going from group to group, bringing down a process or procedure into a step by step methodology and helping their peers gain competency. They gain great satisfaction from seeing the light bulb come off their attendees. I kind of do as dentists trying to get them to quit being dentists and trying to be leaders and speaker four, informer. Often these people who have been burned by lack of information sometimes in their past or whose subject matter is complex but needs to be accessible. CPA, HR insurance coding, they have a great passion for teaching people the rules and regulations that keep changing. Christine Taxan and [inaudible 00:25:02] probably not so much that. I don't know somewhere in between the first three I guess or do you have to be just one?
Margy: Think of a talk that you give frequently. What is that talk?
Howard: Well, what does that talk? I know dentists like the back of my hand, they love to do surgery in their hands in operatory. Yesterday I had a friend who'd come in, in severe pain I mean it's just so damn cool to get them out of pain. First thing I woke up this morning, I was going to call him at 6:00 and I thought, "No dude, you're too hyper, wait an hour." So I waited until 7:00 just to see how he was doing and I called him at 7:00. "Jerry, how you doing?" He says, "Oh I feel great." So they don't want to do insurance, they don't want to do overhead, they don't want to do any of that stuff, they don't want to do the business and so I'm trying to inspire them because I actually went back and got my MBA, so I'm trying to inspire them that dude, maybe you should marry your doctor at dental surgery with an MBA because it's a business. So I'm trying to inspire them to be a business and then I'm trying to recruit them to a free tool, Dentaltown, because so many people have told me since 1998 that it was a game changer in their life, clinically business, whatever so I really believe that if I can convince you to download that Dentaltown app on your iPhone and start checking it and talking on it, that you're going to do everything faster, easier, higher quality, lowering costs. So I'd say that's my message.
Margy: So in a nutshell what I heard you say is that your first primary focus is to help other dentists to understand the value of the business side. You can get everything else easier, right?
Howard: Yeah, well, yes, I think when the business fails, it doesn't matter at a restaurant, doesn't matter how good your lasagna is, you're out of business. And that's why I did this podcast. The reason I did the podcast was because in my thirty years looking at everybody that did really well and liked it, enjoyed it financially, emotionally, all that stuff, they all took about a hundred hours of CE a year or more and the ones that were just miserable, upside down, always behind the eight ball, like going into a test you didn't study for, they only took whatever the state made them take. And so I realized that they got an hour commute and they're in a small town in Toledo and people like you don't visit their study clubs, so now with this Steve Jobs device, I can go out there and get people like you and deliver in their car while they multitask. Because I firmly believe that if they listened to just a hundred shows a year, their mind's going to be filled with so much information that they'll have a greater chance of figuring out whatever problem's in front of them.
Margy: Okay, so in that case, to me, your primary still is inspirer because you hold out there what the Holy Grail looks like and if I were coaching you, everything that we did with regard to the talk that you give would be shaving out the how to's and going to the results. Here are the results of what happens if you become a master. Then organically because they want what you have they're going to go onto your podcast. Organically because they want what you have they're going to do the work to go learn this stuff so you see how you can really shave down and clarify and not clutter up an hour talk with all of it, but rather hold up that Holy Grail to see what amazing looks like. Now, let's take the example because you lead with this, of a dentist in small town USA who wants to do a patient education seminar. They might do a thirty-minute patient education seminar. I don't advocate any much longer than that, couple that with food and you might actually get people to pay attention. So they oftentimes, because the dental mind thinks so clinically will put together a whole little clinical patient education seminar on all the steps that there are involved in, I don't know, permanent dentures and the audience looks at it and goes, "I don't know what I'm supposed to do with that information." Really what they're trying to do is to get them to buy this product or service, so don't try to teach it, nobody cares. They want to know why. They want to know what is so important about this that I'm going to put my fear aside by the money in your hands and do this thing that you're describing The recruiter all about the results, don't try to teach. So that's how I would coach somebody in that case. So you can see just in those two examples how it helps you know what not to spend your time talking about and where to really focus and feature that privileged time you have on the podium.
Howard: That's so true. You can see that in the Clear Choice commercials. So you come from Zimmer Dental Implants, Clear Choices is in thirty cities are doing, north of almost twenty thousand arches a year at about $25,000 an arch and when you look at their amazing commercials, they're never showing you bloody gums and extractions and titanium. They just show people emotionally down because their teeth are down and then just emotionally charged because they got their life back, their smile life. And I just cringe at these B to C consumer marketing piece. I get them in the mail from dentists around here that want to do implants, like, dude, you're scaring people.
Margy: Yes, exactly.
Howard: But yeah, so you're saying they should be talking about the why. Why do you want to have fixed dentures instead of loose dentures or bad shaped teeth or what have you, or pain so just selling the end result?
Margy: Yes. Now the third example that you brought up was what about the dentist who is trying to affect change in their practice with their team? Let's say that they're going paperless and how do you get everybody on board with that? Do you lead with, okay, let's sit down and go through step by step by step. Nobody cares. Nobody wants to do all that extra work. It's fine that we've been doing it for years. What we need to lead with is why? Why are we doing this? What's going to be better for you? What's going to be better for the practice? What's going to be better for the patients? And if we can paint that picture now people want to say, "Oh, I'm on board. How do I do it?" And now they're going to listen, so anytime we're communicating we need to think, what is the end game I'm after? And Simon Sinek is a big inspiration for me and his Ted Talk on "Start with Why," is mandatory viewing for all of my new clients and if you go to YouTube and type in Simon Sinek, S I N E K, "Start with Why" he has a full twenty minute long Ted Talk, but you can also include in the search in YouTube, short version, and there's a five minute version that gets you the gist of it. And in there he talks about that decisions are not made based on facts and data and it's a brain science MRI, CAT scan data, proven fact that decisions are not made based on facts and data. That's because decisions are made in the limbic part of our brain, but facts and data are processed in the frontal cortex.
What happens in the limbic part, that's our emotions and so if we don't tap into that emotional part of a decision maker, we're not even going to get to square one. Now, so consciously what happens is we then collect the facts and data to justify ourselves and we go, "Oh look at me. I've just made a great decision. Look at all these facts and data." But the decision was already made, that gut feeling we get, "Oh, I think I need a safer car because I have kids now." It's not based on facts and data. It's based on I want safety for my kids. Then we go collect all the facts and data and we can show our friends and family, look what a great parent I am because I have a safe car. So all four of those speaker styles start with some emotional end result that we want for something to happen for somebody else's benefit and we have to get our audiences to be there first, in that place of benefit and then we can bring them along the line of the facts and data. Does that make sense?
Howard: Absolutely, and that's why I cannot stand to talk religion or politics to people because they want to believe what they believe and the only people in my entire life I've ever seen have just a slight opening for debate or change or whatever, they were clear back in high school and college. But like once you're like thirty, I mean, someone just took a welding deal and welded your head shut. I've never seen a fifty-five-year-old change their views on politics, religion, tribal customs. But when you're talking about going paperless instead of going over the details, I loved four-star general George s Patton's quote where he says, "Never tell people how to do things, tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." So you tell them we're going paperless and then they will always surprise you with their ingenuity and it makes them feel good and they hate micromanaging. All animals hate to feel controlled or trapped or there's nothing scarier than walking into a barn in Kansas and you realize you just stumbled upon a coyote and it just scares the hell out of everyone. Animals don't like that and so that is amazing. So on your four speaker styles for a recruiter, outside of dentistry and the big B to C speaking field, who were your idols and mentors of speaking? You mentioned Simon Sinek.
Howard: What would he be, an inspirer?
Margy: Absolutely, because he's showing us what good looks like and he's helping all of us move our own bars forward. Seth Godin is the same way. Seth Godin talks about the tribal culture that we all want to be part of the tribe that we all want to feel a sense of belonging and he inspires all of us to think about that. To think about how can we best build our tribe and what can we contribute to our tribe and how can we move our tribe forward. So those two are absolutely classic inspirers. Now you want to talk about recruiter. How about Steve Jobs? Steve Jobs, his whole goal was to sell his product, but he didn't lead with, here are all of the ways that you push these buttons and here's all the memory capacity and here's all the processing and here's all the data storage and conductivity. No, he talked about how our lives were going to be changed, how we were going to now have the ability to connect with people in a new and different way. How we were going to have visual access to see people on Facetime. He talked about the relationships that we could build around the world.
I'd want to know what that is. I'm going to go buy what he's selling. He never even talked about all the details. So there's the classic recruiter, but he knew what his endgame was. Now if he had come out and just not have focused on that, he may have blurted out some of those facts and data in addition to, buy my thing because it's really high quality, in addition to the fact that all of this competition out there is behind the times and confused the message. He was a master at clarity.
Howard: Well, do you feel sorry for Tim Cook having to walk in his shoes. He's been in his shoes five years and every time he's interviewed they still mention Steve Jobs five times.
Margy: I don't feel sorry for him for five seconds, no.
Howard: Why is that?
Margy: I think he has the most amazing opportunity to work with brilliant people.
Howard: And he's the first openly gay Fortune 500 CEO.
Margy: Good for him.
Howard: Yeah, well my little brother is gay and that was a big moment for my little brother. He was so excited about that. Any other recruiting besides Steve Jobs, any other recruiters in the B to C room?
Margy: I mean think of anybody who's a salesperson. I'm trying to think off the top of my head, no.
Howard: But Steve would be the best. And you said speaker number two, inspirer, Seth Godin, and Simon Sinek. What about speaker style number three, trainer/teacher in the big B to C world? Or would that be too specific towards a sector?
Margy: I'm not sure specific towards a sector, but I'm trying to think if most often the teacher/trainers are not necessarily the people you would see in the big, big podium style world. They're really the people who are on the ground getting in there with whoever their audience is. But I think about any industry that you can possibly imagine, whether it's from manufacturing to healthcare to teaching itself, there are people who probably had a really good mentor in their life and now they want to pay it forward and they're the people who are going to go into the Holiday Inn conference rooms and sit down with seventeen to twenty people and teach them how to do their craft.
Howard: One thing about speakers is they always say don't shoot the messenger and I think look at the difference between Steve Jobs and politicians. Steve Jobs. I mean, every book movie ever it didn't seem like he was a very good father, husband. He was an incredibly strange dude, but I don't care I love my iPhone. I just love it. When I walked out of dental school they didn't have ATM machines and cell phones and all stuff like that. In fact, when I left high school the greatest invention I ever thought in my lifetime was the automatic garage door opener because my mom always made me, not my five sisters, get out of the car and go open it up and it weighed about eight million pounds.
But this thing is so great I don't really care about Steve Jobs personal life, but it's so weird in politics how everybody's so focused on some scandal or something they did or whatever, whatever. It's like, "Dude, what percent of the people on earth have a scandal? I just want to know their policies. What do their policies do?" But I can't stand talking about religion, politics, but when you talk about business everybody gives Steve Jobs a pass on his personal life, which wasn't too pretty in all the movies and books. It seems like he was an incredibly weird dude, but they don't give the same pass to presidents you know what I mean? I just want to know what policies ... I assume every president and every congressman and every senator, I'm sure there's just a lot of weird dudes out there and what their personal life. But it seems like the public is just so focused on their personal life, in politics it just blocks everything, but you sure see them using their iPhone or other products. You are a big fan of Neuroscience. Why is that? What is it and where in your journey did you become a big fan of Neuroscience?
Margy: Okay, three questions, so first of all Neuroscience to me is understanding how the brain takes information in, how it processes it, how it puts it into memory and then how it accesses it when it needs it. And if you know those things, it's like having a magic wand. I mean it's the Holy Grail, right? As somebody who wants to be an educator or ask people to buy something from you, you need to know how the brain's going to work. So I started doing some of this research really, truly after I heard Simon Sinek's, "Start with Why" Ted Talk because all of a sudden I was like, "Oh, there's brain science behind this. How cool is that?" You know I love having a reason behind what I've already been doing intuitively, so there's a couple of, for instances. For instance, it has been studied, believe it or not, the people who have studied and researched and published on the effectiveness of different types of presentations.
So one of the things that were studied was how much information can people retain and at what different intervals and the bottom line is, no matter how good of a speaker you are people are going to remember around 10% of what you have to say, 10%. Now knowing that do you know which 10% you want your audience to remember or do you leave it up to chance? And so that's one of the tools that I do is I say let's pick that 10% and let's make sure we get that a number of different times, in a number of different ways, in a number of different learning styles and help the audience later know when to use that so that they can file it away in the appropriate file cabinet and when that situation arises they'll like, "Oh, there was something I heard Margy talk about. What was that? Oh, that's right, only 10% of what I am going to teach is going to stick." So that's one way that I do it. Another way is again brain research, MRI, cat scan studied, it turns out that despite this thing about adult learning theories about visual versus auditory versus kinesthetic, everybody, every single human being learns and retains information best 70% best, digital. So let me give you a for instance when I say the word cat. What do you see?
Howard: My cat.
Margy: Yeah, a fuzzy little thing with ears and four paws and a tail. Do you see the letters, C A T?
Margy: No, and yet that's what we put on slides. Why would we put the letter, C A T, if we want somebody to remember the fuzzy thing with the ears and the tail? So this is how we use brain science. We learn how people are going to retain information. Now if your entire slide deck is all images and there's no words it turns out that that is actually non-effective. So researchers went further and they said what is the most effective way? And they came up with something that's called the assertion-evidence model or the AE model. The idea is that an assertion is a plane or a headline or a statement and the evidence is the image so rather than using the classic PowerPoint layout where you have sort of a title and then the bullets, and maybe you might stick a little cute cartoon in the side, the idea would be to have some claim or statement like, "The easiest house pets to care for are cats." And then you have a picture of a cat and by the side might be a picture of one of those self-dispensing food bowls and a self-cleaning litter box because there's your claim that they are the easiest house pets to care for and the evidence. Versus a classic PowerPoint person might put, "The easiest house pets to care as the title and then underneath it, bullet number one of all the types of cats. Number two, we put out self-feeding bowls and they feed themselves. Number three, we have self-cleaning litter boxes so we might put all that information, but the brain won't know where to access it because it doesn't have that image. That make sense?
Howard: It does, but it really scares me because every time I read anything about education, speaking, lecturing, it makes you realize the entire United States school system is completely insane. I've read stuff that little kids can't retain any long-term memory until they're fully woken up, which is like 10:00 and when you wake up your kids and now I'm waking up my grandkids, they're tired and they're sleepy and they're going out the door groggy and you're trying to force breakfast with them and they're like sleepwalk eating even though they went to bed at 8:00. And then you're saying a lot of studies say that at that age it can only retain information for fifteen minutes, but every class is an hour long and they're tired in the afternoon and want to take a nap, but they're trying to stay awake to learn more. I think if you applied any Science to the United States public school from kindergarten to high school you would just have to redo the entire system.
Margy: Well, I agree and this is why I'm such an Evangelist because the same is true for adult learning. Different principles, but if we only could understand some of this stuff, we would stop it with what we do. It pains me. I have friends who have worked with me and they'll be at conferences and they'll pass by the open door to a conference room and they'll take pictures of these horrible slides that are the black background or even worse, the blue background with just white text, bullet, bullet, bullet, and they'll text me these pictures and they're like, "Oh, you need to help these people because it's not how we learn."
Howard: Well, how do you help people? They go to your website, laserpointerpresentations.com.
Margy: That's right.
Howard: Is that the best way to contact you?
Margy: That is the best way to contact me. They can go to my website on there they'll find my phone number and email and I'll tell you what, if there is anybody who listens to your show, to this podcast and they would like a free thirty-minute consultation, I'm going to gift that to your listeners.
Howard: Right on, so you can call her. Now, do you give out your phone number on the deal or do they got to go to the website?
Margy: Sure, hear it out, six one, nine, nine, nine four zero, two nine three.
Howard: And then your email.
Margy: It's Margy, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Howard: Now is Margy your real name or is your real name, Margarita?
Margy: Well, actually my real name is Margaret. I am the seventh generation, first-born woman in my family to be named Margaret. So they had to get creative with nicknames.
Howard: Yeah, I was the third Howard in a row I understand that, but I don't think anybody should call you or email you because you live in San Diego and I would just go to San Diego to see you. I live in Phoenix, every single person in Phoenix wishes they lived in San Diego.
Margy: Well, they're all here during the summer.
Howard: My team is always saying, it's just been a running joke for thirty years, "When can we just move the whole thing to San Diego." God, I love the place. In fact, I'm going there this weekend just for a three-day getaway.
Margy: Excellent, good for you.
Howard: I love the name Margarita because in Russia it's a very common name. It's like Maria in Mexico and when they come here, 90% of them had no idea it was the name of a drink. And I've met so many Russian female dentists that says, "Yes, turns out my name is a very popular alcoholic beverage in your country."
Margy: Well, at least they have a starting place of a positive association, right?
Howard: Yeah, so unfortunately at fifty-five I can't do Tequila anymore. I wish I could go back to those days where I could drink Tequila and those things, but I’m just too damn old. But what three tips could you give our listeners today that they could use themselves today?
Margy: Alright, number one the first thing we talked about, pick that 10%. Pick the one thing you want somebody to remember and make sure that you drive that home all the way through from beginning to end. Number two, understand that the brain is looking for change in order to wake itself up. So use fonts, use color, use images very thoughtfully to ensure that you're not just making it decoration, but you're actually driving home that same one big point that you want people to remember. And number three, please, please get rid of the bullets. Use the assertion-evidence model, which is have a clear five or six-word statement, declare something and then have some kind of image or even icon that backs that up.
Howard: So you're a speaker too, who are you speaking to and who's your target audience?
Margy: Well, my goal really is to help other speakers raise their bar. So I have spoken for some industry, some of the implant companies out there, and I've spoken for their speaker bureau and I've also worked at conferences like Speaking Consulting Network and Vanessa Emerson's Jump Start and places like that where speakers are looking for ways to raise their own game. So just like you, you have a passion for helping people get better, that's my why. I hope at the end of the day is that I can help you and I can help your listeners and I can help the people I work with become the best version of themselves.
Howard: Well your book on Amazon, it's all five-star reviews and on the cover of your book we started the show talking about so many amazing speakers. It looks like you like helping others too, you like sharing information that's why they're calling this, the sharing economy. Who should buy this book on Amazon, Formulate a Winning Presentation, tools for dental and healthcare professionals to compose a talk with impact?
Margy: I can't think of anybody who wouldn't benefit from it. No, really, anybody who is anywhere along their journey, whether they are a dentist who is looking to improve how they communicate with their patient education, their team meetings, their study clubs all the way up to the season speakers. I have had seasoned speakers tell me that this is a highlighter and posted note sort of book because they go and they mark things up that they want to improve for themselves.
Howard: I really hope you make an online CE course because again, I think that for every one person who's going to be a speaker ten more should start having a monthly presentation in their backyard. And dentists, I know my dentist and they're just shy. They're not people person, but like for thirty years I've been wining and dining all the authorities in my city, Ahwatukee, the pharmacist, people don't realize how many people go to a pharmacist and say, "What do you think is best for a toothache, Excedrin or Anbesol?" And they've eaten in my kitchen at my table and we drank beer and watch games and when you go to any other industry, they're always networking, wining, dining, golfing with the value chain. And then you go to the dentist and they're so dentist. They'll be in a medical-dental building with eight dentists and I'll say, "When's the last time you had breakfast lunch, coffee, beer after work with the other seven?" And the answer is always, "I never have." And then it's like, okay, in the same building there's nine MD's. How many of them have been to your house, they've been to breakfast, lunch? None. And it's like, dude, I mean gosh because that word of mouth referral is everything and these are experts and the people who just are in awe because the physician and the attorneys, they walk on water. They think they're all that and a bag of chips, but the chiropractors, the natural paths, all the people that are not considered real doctors because of the egomaniacs, you wouldn't believe how many people are into natural path and alternative medicine because just like the dentist, they don't believe you should treat everything with a pill.
When dentists get high blood pressure they don't say, "Oh that's great, you got a pill that you can give me?" No, they're like, "I'm going to change my diet and exercise." So the dentists are all natural paths. I've had a 100% of all the natural paths and chiropractors in my house just this year, 2018, it's only March, I mean it's only a May 16th. So these tools can help speak and obviously people don't try to take their speaking seriously because now that I've raised four boys and now that I have four grandchildren, one of the biggest mistakes I always see is how people are talking to a two-year-old with the vocabulary that would fit a ten-year-old. And remember when we were little, the peanuts cartoon whenever the parents talked it was [inaudible 00:55:59] and I'm just like, "Dude, she has no idea what you're saying. I mean you might as well just speak Latin, French." They have no idea. So communication is everything. I'd rather be the best communicator and with the best people skills than have the best Math, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology skills if I was going to own a dental office.
Margy: So let me ask you this as a closing question. It's one of the questions that I asked all of the speakers that contributed to my book, which is that with all the things that you've already described with the times that have changed, with the expectations that have changed. What is the singular best piece of advice that you would give to somebody else who was trying to develop themselves in some form as a speaker?
Howard: What I'd really recommend is everything you were talking about, the slides, the presentation, whatever, my favorite art form is comedy clubs and I've been doing those from open mic in college too... I've spoken at every comedy club in Arizona and there's no props, there's no nothing. There's just you, a microphone, your audience, learning how to connect, make eye contact, walk around, not stand behind the podium. Every one of those you never see a comedian standing behind a podium. I'd say the best lectures I ever gave in my life was back in the early years in the '90's where airlines would routinely lose your luggage and I had like six or ten or twelve stacks, a carousel slide, so you had to check them and a lot of times I was traveling in sneakers and sweats. So I show up to a speaking gig, at a dental society, no slides, tennis shoes, sweats, they hand you a mic. I won't do the lapel, I won't [inaudible 00:57:47] and those were the best lectures I ever gave in my life. And in every one of these towns, they have comedy club lessons, like in Phoenix, Arizona, in Tempe, this guy named Tony Visage gives a six-week deal. Monday, Wednesday, Friday night for six weeks, then on the last deal, he actually takes you to a comedy club and you have to perform live. And I mean, people were puking and crying and all that stuff like that.
Another one is at Improv because you get hecklers, you get things and you got to get comfortable. There's the toastmasters and then what I think is the main thing, gosh darn just you know when you're at the Thanksgiving table ... I mean I got a gay brother and two sisters who are nuns. Do you think they agree on everything? From the President to sexual, I mean your own family is massively divisive and you love all of them and you don't care and you're not afraid that your sister is going to think you're a failure, you failed. People just need to lighten up and I see that in comedy verse dentistry because when I go to the comedy club, they always say, "Wow, you're amazing. You're so clean." The biggest acts are clean. Seinfeld and Ellen DeGeneres and all the big names, no F-word, no nudity, none of that stuff like that. I take that same style to dentistry and I am the raunchiest, rudest, crudest person, and then that person who says that goes to a movie that's rated R and sees half-naked people and the F-bomb twenty, fifty, thirty times.
And I also seen speakers you'll go to a lecture and it's the most boring lecture. This guy's behind a podium, he's in a three-piece monkey suit. You're just doing everything to stay awake. Then that night you go to the bar and he comes alive and he's like the funniest guy in the world. Then the next day you go out fishing for six hours and again, he's the life of the party and I'm sitting there like, "Why couldn't you just be the life of the party during your lecture?" And then when dentists ask a question to a speaker, when they got a beer in their hand and a fishing pole and it's colorful and it's amazing and everybody remembers it, but then when it's lecture time, he puts on his monkey suit and checks out his personality and pretends he's at somebody's confirmation or the first mass they've given or something, so context is everything. But my deal just lightened up, like you talk about Steve Jobs, one of the greatest communicators. He never wore a suit or a tie or a monkey suit. Just be yourself. Just completely relaxed. Be Yourself. Talk about what your passion on. Don't ever fain expertise, don't try to be an expert in something you're not. Be Passionate. Pretend that microphone is a beer a, pretend your laser pointer is a fishing pole and then I always trust my audience. I always tell my audience that everyone knows all the politicians are lying to you. They all know it. And the flip side of that is I'm going to tell you something that you really don't agree with, but I respect you enough that you and I can really like and respect each other and totally disagree, that's okay. But me being a liar to you and you not trusting what I say and I'm in a suit and tie and I'm coming at you, so I just tell people. And people have such a hard time when in dentistry and on Dentaltown when people disagree with them. Yet when they go home, they don't agree with their sister, their mom, their cousin Eddie on half the major issues in life, yet they're about to go to blows with some other dentist about what implant system he uses.
Margy: One of my favorite, favorite symposium I saw was at AAP and they had a moderator and they had three clinicians all looking at the same case and they specifically said, "We want to hear how you would treat this," and they will all three different. And it was set up to be that vigorous debate. It was set up to be why I think one way might work different than the other, but the outcome was they all could work. So what's wrong with having some vigorous debate?
Howard: And that's the biggest red flag in the global warming debate because every time they say 97.9% of all the scientists ever agree. Okay, well 97% of [inaudible 01:02:15] has never even agreed on what day it is and you go to Dentaltown, you take the pediatric dentists on silver diamine fluoride, they're fifty/fifty. If it was really a scientific debate, it would be a violent debate. There will be people at NASA and jet propulsion laboratory violently agreeing, disagreeing, but you don't see any of the fight. You get the spoon package they're like, "There's global warming, give us your car's. Quit burning gasoline." And we all switched to solar and the government wants to start a big agency on carbon tax credits. And it might all be true, but the presentation comes off so false that that's why you have the president you do now because all the other messages were just so unbelievable. They were delivered so horribly and I always think when I go back to the speakers, I always think of the best speakers in my life have been who were the president who ran a country with a third of a billion people. And I thought Reagan and Clinton stole the show because you see all these other presidents they'll ask you a question and then they start answering it and five minutes into it you don't even know what they're talking about. You don't even remember the question. But Clinton and Reagan, they always answer the question first with a yes/no. They'd say, "Well, yes, and I'll tell you why." And then he'd tell a story like a parable, like how the Bible is trying to hand it down for [inaudible 01:03:44]. Clinton and Reagan and Oprah Winfrey, such great communicators and there were so many presidents that were smarter, but they couldn't communicate. They couldn't deliver. They couldn't lead twelve ducks to a pond.
Margy: Yes, [inaudible 01:03:59]
Howard: Yeah, so this is the skill set buy her book, Formulate a Winning Presentation. I hope you make an online CE dentist. When this Clear Choice came out or what is it, is it Clear Choice or Clear Correct? I always get it mixed up.
Margy: Clear Choice.
Howard: A rising tide lifts all ships, when they came to Phoenix, Arizona, I mean just patients all the time are seeing these commercials and why can't you talk about that? Why can't you do a presentation? When I see dentists that replace a hundred implants a month, every Thursday night at their office, they have hors-d'oeuvres and Kool Aid and whatever, and they give a presentation. They go into nursing homes, they go into retirement communities. I think orthodontists could make bank if they started giving presentations to pregnant moms, how to raise your child so it doesn't need orthodontics because malocclusions only showed up in a century ago. So for the last two million years, something was very different. They were nursing for several years and trying to chew meat off a Mastodon bone and now you're giving it a big little sippy cup, a bottle and feeding it applesauce so there's no force development on the face, so you got narrow pallets and you've got to pull teeth and all that stuff. But man, if you could lead a staff meeting, if you could sit there and talk to your patients, join the Toastmasters, join the Improv and plus you meet some really funny people. I've met some incredibly great friends from going through that Tempe comedy club and they were police officers, bankers, fireman's lawyers, just people who always had an itch to do stand up, just amazing.
And then once you get more out of your shell, then you can walk over to the pharmacist and invite them to ... I mean right now we're in the middle of baseball season, get two tickets and go ask the pharmacist if he wants to go to a ballgame. I guarantee you take the pharmacist to the ballgame, the rest of his life every single time someone says, "Would you take an Anbesol or Excedrin for a toothache?" They're like, "No dude. I called Howard." And sometimes they're face-timing on their own damn phone.
Margy: Over cool.
Howard: They're like, "Hey dude, Howard, I'm at the counter. There's this guy here. I want you to meet her. You know, her name's Margy. Margy here's Howard. He's a dentist you know, right across the street there. Yeah, he's right there. Here talk to him." This is everything, communications, everything. Everything I learned in ten thousand hours sitting in a library of Math and Geometry and Trig and I mean talk about a waste of time. Because I've never used 99% of it in the last three decades. I don't know maybe it will come out next month. But thanks for all you do and if you also have speaker’s friend, the people in your book. I've had Linda on the show. I've had Ray Shelburne. I've had Rachel Wall, but if you have other friends that want to come on the show, send them on the show. And lady you talked about ...
Margy: Vanessa Emerson?
Howard: Vanessa Emerson, she's scheduled to come on the show, right?
Ryan: It sounds familiar.
Howard: Yeah, Vanessa Emerson, she helps people with their speaking career too.
Margy: She helps people get booked. She is amazing.
Howard: Yeah, she's coming over September 5th.
Margy: Great, [inaudible 01:07:18]
Howard: But hey Margy, thank you so much for coming on the show today and talking to my homies for an hour and I hope after listening to you for an hour, everyone becomes a better communicator.
Margy: Thank you, thank you so much. I really appreciate it.
Howard: The honor was all mine and whenever you want to trade places and you come live in my house and I'll take your house and live in San Diego and you can enjoy these nice summers when it's a hundred and fifteen every day for six months in a row, when you're ready to trade houses, I'm game.
Margy: Okay good to know, good to know.
Howard: Alright, have a great day.