One of the main areas where I see clients get bogged down when they are creating a new talk is in deciding how they want to structure it. What’s the focus? What key points do they want to include and what do they want to leave out?

I recommend sketching simply as a way of looking at the potential of different options. This can be such a fun process. Here are two of the many ways I help them focus on this.

You could take 3-5 mins to try out each option on a topic of your choice.


As you sketch out this talk, it’s time to share your favourite recipe for making a super successful something. Whether it’s for making a YouTube video, or running a remote meeting, or onboarding a new member of staff.

What are the ingredients? Be specific.

Not just the ingredients, but the method?

What are your tried and tested tips for success?

As a muffin maker I have practical tips that go beyond ‘don’t overmix them’ or ‘bake for 25 mins’. I can get helpfully specific about what the consistency looks like, and how to easily test if they’re done.

What’s this for you…Let us learn from your secret recipe.

Ingredients. Method. Those secrets that make all the difference.


Pick a point where you bumped up against something hard – personally or professionally. It could be in a project. Or in your wider career.

Show us how you got over or around it.

You could also pick 3 smaller obstacles and turn them into an obstacle course. 3 things you’ve bumped up against as a project manager. And your best tips and techniques for still finishing the course.

What did it take?

What would you do with a similar obstacle with the benefit of hindsight?

Are there any routes that would have helped you avoid it?

How can we all learn from this?

Life is not a flat, smooth terrain. It’s useful to know ways of dealing with the bumps! And it makes us less lonely to know others are skinning their knees, or figuring out how to haul themselves over things too.  

If you haven’t already downloaded them, you can find 10 more of my favourites here!

Have fun sketching!