Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Begin Your Presentation with the Result in Mind

Working the last few years as a promoter and event producer I've seen all sides of people either exciting their audience or boring them to death. The "boring them" part is too easy a trap (the result of doing the same thing as everyone else time after time). The difference I've noticed between great and grinding is how the presenter approached their presentation.

What is incredibly successful is:
  • Don't think about what you want your audience to know about you! Instead think about what the audience wants for themselves.
  • Don't think about what your audience will be saying on the way into your presentation. Instead plan for what you want your audience to be saying on the way out of your event.
  • Start your presentation prep from the conclusion, and back into the opening remarks. It is amazing how differently your event will look when you begin with the end as your starting point.
  • Be a story-teller. No one is excited by facts (unless you're a systems engineer listening to the spec's list on the latest Android chip). Make your presentation about real people, their challenges and their successes.
  • Focus on connecting with your audience and creating relationships. Engage individuals from the audience, hear their voices and include them in a conversation – not "let me tell you, it's all about me".

Over the years I have attended hundreds of presentations, maybe even thousands. Unfortunately it's been rare that a presentation was exciting, different, engaged me and caused me to think differently...

And that is your opportunity! If you begin with the result in mind you will have leaped over 90% of your competition. I challenge you to try it – begin with your result in mind.