Many a speaker has lamented the loss of a traditional opening joke in their presentations as an act of contrition to the gods of political correctness and growing cultural and gender awareness.
Category Archives: Presentation Skills
At the end of a big presentation or conference, it would be unusual to see the speaker or host pick up their belongings, put on their coat and leave, without any sort of closing speech. Generally, they would take a few minutes to deliver a summary, thanking the audience for their attendance and participation, and leaving them with a final thought.
For reasons that I’ve never been able to fathom, some companies just love to call meetings, for the most trivial to the obscure of reasons. I’ve even been known to receive an invite to a pre-meeting, to discuss what we will be talking about at the actual meeting! Very often these meetings, which lack any true purpose, generate very little in the way of action points and are promptly forgotten or sidetracked once everyone has left the room.
This article is based on the webinar delivered by business consultant, author and speaker Gihan Perera, which can be viewed here.
It really doesn’t matter where, what or to whom you’re presenting; there’s no getting away from the fact that presentations are a pretty big deal. As I’ve written before, presentations are a unique opportunity to share your ideas, vision and knowledge to an audience who, at least to start off with, are hungry to hear what you have to say.
This article is based on the webinar delivered by bestselling author Carmine Gallo, which can be viewed here.
What distinguishes “good” from amazing when it comes to giving a presentation?
Good means that you presented a credible handling of your topic. Some of your audience members learned something new from what you said, and some moved to accept your point of view. On top of that, you didn’t embarrass yourself.
At an ‘Executive Presence’ workshop I was running recently, the corporation’s chief council stood up to make a few introductory remarks. She recounted how while talking to a recruiter she listed all the qualifications she was looking for in her next hire, and she concluded with “presence”. There was a pause, and then the recruiter replied, “presence, well that will definitely cost you more”. Wow, I thought, people are finally figuring out that presence itself has value; it’s a commodity.
Why are most business presentations so bad? Often we see speakers organise their talks in lists of information (such as ‘Five reasons to join our exciting investment program’), without recognising that the human mind isn’t constructed to remember lists very well. Once we’ve been told three or four things, to remember the fourth and fifth points, we’ll have to forget the first couple. ‘In one ear and out the other’ pretty much describes how we respond to lists.
A previous article I wrote called ‘7 mistakes to avoid when presenting to senior management’ attracted an enormous amount of interest with over 29,000 views.
To celebrate the launch of the 3rd edition of Speaking Up Without Freaking Out by Matt Abrahams, Stanford University has created the infographic below which provides us with 9 ways to manage anxiety ahead of a presentation.
Over the years I have been fortunate enough (depending on your point of view) to present on anything from marketing strategies and business plans to awards and mobile phone ring tones, engaging audiences of senior executives, professional sport stars, rooms full of old ladies playing bingo and conference halls full of over-imbibed salespeople at 11pm on an end of year high.
With online meetings, webinars and training sessions, one of the most important factors in the success of your presentation is the design of your slide deck. You must design engaging visuals that grab attention, keep them interested, and enhance your message.
Now that the countdown to Christmas is in full swing, it’s always nice to reflect on the highs of 2015, and in our case, the blog posts that really got our readers thinking and sharing. So just before we kick back with a glass of mulled wine and call it a wrap for 2015, we thought you might like our Christmas Top 10 of the posts that grabbed the most eyeballs this year…
We all love to watch a presenter who appears cool, calm and confident. In fact, if a presenter doesn’t seem confident, it is uncomfortable to watch and we will have no confidence in the message they are sharing. But how is it that they are confident in the first place? Here are seven secrets that you can use to become a confident presenter: