Presenters that get results in today’s high-stakes world need to create experiences that challenge listeners to think, discuss, and even question what’s being said. So, what can you do to incorporate interactive elements that emotionally, physically and verbally involve your audience? Consider experimenting these 5 techniques.
How often have you stood in the wings before a presentation and cringed as the person introducing you inadvertently mischaracterized the focus of your talk, distracted the audience with unexpected remarks, or recited your entire bio word for word?
If you’re guilty of leaving this critical component of your presentation to chance, raise your hand. Rest assured, you are not alone. However, I can’t help but wonder, with all the time and effort we put into our presentations, why we invest such little time and effort into planning and rehearsing our introductions.
On average, it takes three to five focused rehearsals for a speaker to really seal the deal — especially when it comes to critical or career-defining presentations.
Certainly, preparing for a weekly staff meeting report doesn’t demand three to five rehearsal sessions. But when the pressure’s on, there’s no replacement for a structured rehearsal plan that will help deliver the results you need when you step up to the podium.
In today’s short attention span world, communicating clearly and succinctly is no longer enough. You need to “up” the value quotient and make your message memorable with a UP. In presenters’ terms, think of your UP as a single sentence that clearly summarizes the essence or purpose of your presentation, providing focus and differentiating your “story” from others.
I’m often surprised that many speakers still fall prey to the fallacy that preparation means memorization — and that bringing notes to the podium might make you appear ill-prepared in the eyes of your audience. To the contrary, top presenters know it’s not what you bring to the podium but how you use it that sets apart good and great speakers.
I decided to take a step back to see exactly how this presenter was creating such a powerful experience for his listeners. To tell you the truth, he wasn’t doing every single thing right — and somehow it didn’t matter. My lesson that day was that he did three things exceptionally well — and those were enough to captivate his audience. And you can start doing those same three things today.
If you’re like many speakers, you view Q&As in one of two ways: you dread them, worried about being caught off guard, or you breeze through them, thinking that the “real work” is behind you. Wrong and wrong, and here’s why Q&A is often the most valuable part of any presentation — it invites dialogue, provides feedback, and, when properly handled, allows you to conclude on an energetic and powerful note.
A colleague recently auditioned to become a certified trainer for a well-known sales guru, delivering customized versions of his popular seminars under a licensing arrangement. Definitely a high-stakes scenario, as a successful audition would catapult Ernie’s career to the next level.
After three coaching sessions, I asked Ernie to share his thoughts on key takeaways before he headed off to the big audition. These are his lessons learned.