Nerissa Golden

7 Things to Set the Atmosphere for your Speaking Success

event-officeYou would be amazed the difference it makes to the success of your training or speaking event when the atmosphere in the room is just right by the time your attendees walk in. That may be a bit of a challenge if you are not the organiser and only the trainer or speaker but it is in your best interest to know what the space looks and feels like.

A few years back I took a protocol course and the instructor suggested that we set the room right with incense. I hadn’t noticed until she said it that the room, which I’d been in many times before, was now lightly scented and always felt very welcoming. We don’t always notice when things are right but we definitely know when they are wrong.

She made sure that although only teaching a workshop, the room was inviting. This included, the positioning of tables and chairs so everyone could have good visibility to view the presentation.

  1. Upon accepting the invite to speak, let the organises know your seating requirements and ask if they can be facilitated. If they are unable to accommodate you then you have time to adjust your presentation to suit.
  2. When speaking at someone’s event, ask that you be allowed to see the space a day before where possible or at least a few hours before the event, with enough time to ask for changes to the room set up.
  3. If it is your event and you are using someone’s space, do a walk through at least a week before to check line of sight to the podium and screens.
  4. If you are recording the event, ask the videographer to view the space with you and guide you on where the cameras will be set up to make sure that your event is captured in the best way. Know the best places to stand for lighting and visual impact.
  5. Do a sound check and test out the Projector the day of your event.
  6. Ensure that your laptop or device can integrate with their equipment.
  7. Get to the event space at least 30 minutes before to do a last check and to be ready to welcome your attendees. This will give you a chance to learn about a few of them and it may give you ideas of how you can refer to what they do within your presentation.

Public speaking and training can be more enjoyable for you and have a greater impact for your audience when you set the right atmosphere.

I wish you success.


TrulyCaribbean.Net Launches Caribbean Girls Can Code Campaign

CARIBBEAN  – To coincide with the international celebration of Girls in ICT Day on April 24, 2014, will feature stories of women who code.

According to the founder Nerissa Golden, the campaign provides videos of women of Caribbean heritage who develop web applications, solve real world issues and are making a difference in their communities and in the technological space.

“There are many women who are intimidated by technology and we wanted to show that there is no need to be and that you can start where you are with the present knowledge that you have,” explained Golden.

“Some of the women featured taught themselves while others went to school to learn programming but all are using what they know to bring change and to improve the world in which we live,” she added.

Golden said the idea to do the campaign came about as the Montserrat National ICT Council was planning their local activities for the Girls in ICT Day. Under the theme Girls Can, she decided to reach out to women in her network to share their stories to motivate young girls to consider a career in the technology field.

By 2020 there will be millions of additional jobs globally created in the ICT sector, however with current trends, only about 30% of those jobs will be filled, according to US statistics. Knowledge of ICT can increase a woman’s income potential and also provides options for employment and creating work for others.

Featured in the videos are Jamaican Mobile App Developer Roxanne Wanliss, US/Trinidadian Blogger Eva Wilson of SocaMom.Com, and Angelica O’Donoghue of the Antigua Chronicle.

All of the videos can be viewed on or on on the Caribbean Girls Can Code playlist.

Links to Videos

Playlist –

ZJB and GIU to make short film

SWEENEY’S, Montserrat – Radio Montserrat (ZJB) and the Government Information Unit (GIU) will produce a film entitled ‘Choices’. The short film will seek to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS.

Providing some background information on the film, Director of Information and Communication, Nerissa Golden said, “ZJB and GIU are part of the Caribbean Broadcasting Media Partnership on HIV and AIDS and all of the regional members are asked from time to time to produce different content to share throughout the region”.

“Choices’ is a short film that should be about ten minutes long when it’s done, but it will be a dramatic ten minutes,” expressed Ms. Golden. Continue reading

A Thankful Heart

Nerissa is a member of the Diary of a Single Mom bloggers network.  Real women. Real Mothers. Real Life.

The late 90s and into the 21st Century seemed to be all about showing gratitude. All the talk shows and authors were promoting this wonderful idea that we should be more thankful and less sorrowful about the shouldas, wouldas, and couldas.

It seemed no more than a nice thing to practice then, but now I know it as the best way to live. A friend called me recently needing my opinion on depression and how to deal with it. After a few moments of thought, I told her she needed to be more thankful. Depression can’t live in a thankful heart or spirit, I said with confidence. I knew it to be true as I remember fighting my way out of depression, not with drugs but with prayer and thanksgiving.

It is not the easiest thing to do when your cupboards are empty and your marriage is failing, but get thankful. You may have been out of a job for more years than you’ve had one, and the bills don’t even come anymore in your name because you don’t own anything or live anywhere, but get thankful.

Nerissa, if I could come up with one thing to be thankful for I would but I can’t think of any. Nothing good is happening to me and it sucks to be me right now. Girl, get thankful. Be thankful that you have a sound mind, be thankful that you found a moment to read this column, be thankful that you can breathe.

Don’t try to rationalize it or measure whether it is wrong or right just be thankful. When the bills do show up, still say a big thank you. I do, because I can remember when I had to depend on others to shelter, feed, and clothe me and my kids. I am thankful because I have a job even when it is challenging and frustrating. I am thankful even when at the end of the day, I’m just exhausted, needing to write but not having the energy to do it. I am thankful for my children even on those days when I ask myself “What did I get myself into?” Is it too late to give them back?

Life brings us many opportunities to just be down and frustrated, but every one of those moments are also a chance to overcome them through thanksgiving. I pray for you that you will have a thankful heart, especially on the days when there seems to be no valid reason to say thank you, say it anyway.

Nerissa Golden is the mother of four amazing children and lives on the island of Montserrat. She is the author of Truly Caribbean Woman’s Guide to Good Love and The Making of a Caribbeanpreneur: Strategies for Overcoming Fear and Building Wealth. Find more of her writings at