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Communicate You Interviews Barry Brophy

A couple of weeks ago I called in to University College Dublin for a chat with Barry Brophy. With a background in engineering, Barry spent many years studying cognitive psychology in order to gain insights in how to explain technical material.

Barry has nearly two decades of experience helping people make presentations in both the private sector and as a college lecturer. He has developed specialist Masters Courses at UCD that run across all disciplines. Barry is also the author of The Natural Presenter – Turning Conversations into Presentations, which was published in 2007, and a new book Awful Presentations: Why We Have Them and How to Put Them Right

During my chat with Barry we discuss:

  • His transition from engineering into the area of teaching presentation skills (2.12)
  • The different approaches taken by students when making presentations (5.54)
  • Cultural silos faced by professionals when delivering a business presentation (8.32)
  • How to avoid providing too much information when you present (10.45)
  • The biggest mistake made by people in their approach to presentations (13.20)
  • Using conversational skills to connect with an audience (17.23)
  • The importance of eye contact when making a presentation (21.05)
  • The initial steps for building confidence as a beginner speaker (26.25)
  • Something Barry has changed his mind about in the last few years (36.23)
  • The worst advice he often sees or hears being dispensed (37.06)
  • Advice Barry would you give to his 25-year-old self (38.43)

Thank you to Barry for taking the time to speak with me. For more great advice log on to

Catch-up with some of the other posts in the ‘Expert Interviews’ series here.