I don’t believe in the “perfect” presentation. We all have our own styles and structures. Some that fail dismally and others that work beautifully.
I’ve seen both this month. Both were delivered by experts in their field; experts with graduate degrees.
The first presenter dumped everything they knew about the subject on us in an hour. It was all relevant and correct, but she shared no real-life examples. I felt so overwhelmed I disconnected half way through.
The second presenter focused on one key concept (I can still remember it) and shared a few memorable examples. I stayed tuned in and left inspired.
In my years of helping leaders design compelling presentations, I’ve seen these 2 pitfalls occur over and over:
1) Overload of info
2) Lack of examples / stories
So, even though there is no one perfect way to present, there are some critical concepts that will truly transform your presentations. Concepts I teach in my Presentation Transformation workshops
Drum roll please…
1) POWERFULLY LAND A SMALL NUMBER OF BIG IDEAS **
2) SHARE REAL LIFE EXAMPLES
POWERFULLY LAND A SMALL NUMBER OF BIG IDEAS
Make this one change and your presentation will already be WAY above the norm. Great presenters focus on only a few key concepts. WHY? Because our brains are not wired to hold a large amount of information and data. What our efficient brains ARE designed to do beautifully is hold on to a few key concepts.
SHARE REAL LIFE EXAMPLES THAT SUPPORT THOSE BIG IDEAS:
If you think that real life examples and stories are just fluff – think again! They serve as PROOF, and our brains LOVE proof! Our audience wants to know: “Who has already tried this…(our presentation topic).” “What happened?” “Did they succeed…how?” “Did they fail…how??”
Stories bring our big ideas to life. Think of it this way:
If our BIG IDEAS are the OXYGEN of presentations, our EXAMPLES are the HEARTBEAT.
(BTW, Metaphors make great BIG IDEAS– see what I did there?)
So, for your next important presentation – instead of brainstorming all the content you could cover for your presentation, PAUSE and ask yourself: “What are my 2-3 BIG IDEAS? “ What examples would bring those to life?”
NOW – GO ROCK YOUR PRESENTATION!
** from Tim Pollard’s The Compelling Communicator
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