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Friday 20 July 2012

Presentations should never be boring again!

Presentations should never be boring again!

How many boring presentations have you sat through? Be honest, how many have you given? What is it that makes presentations boring? The material? The presenter? The space that you are in?

Ok, so you may have limited options over the latter but you do have some control over the former. And if you follow some basic rules you are a fair way to being there.

1. Make it personal. After all it is YOU that is standing up there. You're not boring are you? You are someone with an opinion, full of knowledge that you want to share with your audience. So when you are preparing for your presentation, think about how you can use your personality, your thoughts and opinions to bring it alive.

2. And making it personal also applies t the audience. Why should they listen to you? What has it got to do with them? What are they going to learn and why is it important?

My 15 year old daughter regularly asks the questions of her teachers "Why do I need to know this stuff? How am I going to use it later in life?"

A difficult question sometimes for a teacher to answer, but one which they don't often have an adequate reply to. But it is a question that you need to consider because without it your presentation is a NICE to have not a NEED to have.

3. Too many words! How often do you come across a presentation with too many words! Words on slides - lots of them! Words in the script - too directive, instructive, patronising, jargon filled. Remember your audience want to be engaged. Using pictures rather than words maybe a cliche, but that is because it works!

4. Start at the end. When planning a presentation I will think about where I want the audience to be at the end and the call to action that I am going to raise. The rest of the presentation is then a journey to get them there. There may be highs and lows, questions and answers, but they should all be leading one conclusion.

Enjoyed this? You might like to read Stand and Deliver, Improve Your Presentations at Work, part of the Cherrystone Collection


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