7 Ways to Be a Creative, Authentic, and Eloquent Presenter at Work
In today’s knowledge-based society, presenting information in a way that captures the audience’s attention, keeps them engaged and entertained is crucial. Simply reading PowerPoint slides is no longer acceptable. To be an effective presenter, creativity, eloquence, and authenticity are highly sought attributes. If you’re not confident about your presentation skills, here are seven ways to be a creative, authentic, and eloquent presenter at work.
1. Think Like a “Tweet”
Before you even think about opening your laptop and creating a PowerPoint deck, think like a “tweet.” Get large coloured post-it notes and a few Sharpie pens to start crafting your own storyboard with a series of “tweets.” Use each post-it note to write down in less than 140 characters:
– Your message
– What you want your audience to think about your message
– What you want them to feel about it
– What you want them to do when you finish speaking
By doing this, you’ll have absolute clarity on your objectives and intentions, allowing you to use remaining post-it notes to creatively craft your story.
2. Billboards Are Best
Imagine you’re driving down the street, and your entire presentation unfolds in the form of giant billboards. Each board contains a colourful and compelling image supported by a very short headline as your story unfolds step by step. Each billboard grabs your attention and makes you want to know more. Take your post-it notes and create your mini-series of billboards by filling them with simple hand-drawn images and headlines. Don’t worry about how well you can draw; sketch whatever comes to mind, however basic it may look.
3. Contrast is King
While crafting each post-it note with an image or a headline, consider how you’re going to build contrast into your presentation. Ask yourself what could help you to bring it to life even more:
– A story
– A prop
– A short video or soundbite
– A question
– An exercise involving the audience
4. Take 7 Steps
To make your presentation effective and logical, take seven steps:
– Set the scene: What’s so important that you couldn’t send an email?
– Begin the journey: What’s the message, where are you taking them?
– Encounter the obstacle: Why do they really need to go there?
– Overcome the obstacle: How are you going to get them there?
– Resolve the story: Now they are here, what does it look and feel like?
– Make the point: Why is it so important?
– Call to action: What do you want them to do now?
5. Give Them Their 3 F’s
Your listeners only want three things from you, so make sure you include them in your billboards:
– Facts: features, benefits, data, logical argument, examples, case studies
– Feeling: stories, metaphor, anecdotes, suspense, shock, humour, surprise
– Future: help them to see the future and how it relates to them
6. Shout, Sing, Scream, and Sigh
Your voice is your greatest asset as a presenter. When stretched, challenged, and tuned, it can help you to breathe life into your presentation. Unlock the enormous potential and range of your voice by practicing reading different paragraphs from your favourite book aloud. Master passionate, angry, sad, excited tones to make your voice dynamic and engaging.
7. Focus on Their SHIFT
Every presentation aims to create some form of shift in the audience, whether it’s a change of attitude, understanding, beliefs, or behaviour. Knowing the audience’s direction is one thing, but understanding the SHIFT they would like to experience from listening to you is far more important. Here are five potential shifts your audience may be looking for:
– Success: Provide insights that help them achieve some level of improvement in their personal or professional lives
– Happiness: Your audience wants to feel good, so everything you say, show, and do should have that in mind
– Insight: You are the expert on the subject, and they want you to translate your knowledge in a way that they can understand
– Freedom: Find ways to free them from some levels of stress at work
– Time: Help them to get more time by sharing ideas and tips on how to manage time better.
In conclusion, presenting information isn’t just about conveying a message. It’s about capturing your audience’s attention, engaging them, and creating an unforgettable experience. If you follow these seven tips, you’ll be a creative, authentic, and eloquent presenter who can capture your audience’s attention and keep them engaged from start to finish.