5 Powerfully Simple Presentation Tips

1. Get Rid of Pleasantries – There is no need to talk about the weather, how grateful you are to be there, to apologize, or reintroduce yourself. You only have a few seconds to grab their attention so start with a question or jump into your content. 2. Make it Conversational – Act like you are speaking to one person. Make it conversational. Ask questions. If it is a small group you might create dialogue, with a large audience ask questions and give a pause for people to think about the question. Keep them engaged in the conversation. 3. Tell Stories – People love stories. Stories inspire, stories motivate—stories evoke emotion in people that causes them to respond, to take action, to adopt your ideas, and buy your products. Robert McKee put it well when he said, “Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today.”
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If You Use PowerPoint – Read This

Last week at one of the events I keynoted the speaker before me used 65 blank white slides with bullet point paragraphs in black font that he read word for word from screen! – Seriously painful. So to make sure that doesn’t happen anymore – here are 18 tips for anyone who uses PowerPoint to present: (I have to give credit to Ruby Newell-Legner for many of the tips below)   Finish your presentation before starting to work on your Power Point slides Remember – PowerPoint is NOT your Presentation. It is a visual support to your message Use a consistent template slide for consistency and branding Keep slide design simple and clean Limit text to 6 lines (or less) per slide and 6 words (or less) per line Cover only one idea per slide Avoid Italics and vertical lettering Minimize animation – Avoid too many transition styles or a
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The Basics of A Great Speech

I received an email from a student who was in one of my audiences who asked if i could give her advice on putting a speech together – so here you go. The Basics of A Great Speech They say that people fear speaking more than they fear death. I think the reason is because you are still alive after you give a horrible speech ☺ The truth is that most people don’t know how to organize and prepare a great speech – so I wanted to share with you some of the basics of a great speech. Every speech has three parts: The Opening, Middle & Closing. Let’s break each part down. Opening: When you open a speech you need to grab people’s attention right away. First off, dress the part. If it is a business or formal setting – dress appropriately. People will judge the way that you
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The Goal is Connection, Not Perfection

When it comes to communication, whether you are speaking to a large audience, selling to an individual, teaching a class or having a conversation with your spouse, I believe that most of us aim at the wrong target. When you read any book on communication, or if you ask anyone what their goal is for their presentation – they will talk about making it perfect. They want you to have the right opening, structure the presentation correctly, back up every point, make it engaging, and close in a memorable way. I agree with all of those concepts (in fact I teach them) but I believe we miss the mark if we focus on perfection. Instead the focus of our communication should be connection. Think about this for a moment. The golden rule of business is that people do business with and refer business to people they know, like and trust.
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What Country Music Taught Me About Public Speaking

When I was 16 years old, I had a girlfriend who slowly but surely converted me to country music. It started with Garth Brooks’ Standing Outside The Fire. – (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jh499tJV_sY) Then it was Tim McGraw, Toby Keith and pretty soon I was hooked. Country music songs are great because they have much more of a story to them than most other genres of music. (I know what the haters are thinking – “my dog died, my wife left me, etc…) And within the stories of country music songs there is an incredible lesson for anyone who speaks to groups or gives presentations. I first recognized this pattern with Tim McGraw’s song – Don’t Take The Girl. Read the lyrics and then I’ll tell you how it applies. Don’t Take The Girl Johnny’s daddy was taking him fishin’ When he was eight years old A little girl came through the front
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