No more speeches please!
What does an audience really want from a presentation?
A well-rehearsed speech? A story that is so perfectly crafted it is like a stage play or perhaps a presentation that is choreographed within an inch of its life?
I didn’t think so.
So why do so many workplace or conference presenters get it so wrong?
Perhaps they are spending too much time watching politicians deliver their performances, their much-loved community leader spruiking from the town hall or maybe they hired a speech coach instead of a presentation coach to help them get ready for their big gig.
The last thing a whole conference full of attendees waiting to be inspired into action wants to hear is a perfectly rehearsed speech.
So, what is the alternative?
A commercial conversation from the platform of course. Not just any conversation. It must be a relevant conversation. The right conversation, at the right time for the right audience.
A powerful keynote presentation or a pitch to the boardroom will still need to be prepared of course. You never wing a commercial conversation. You need a lot of the right preparation. However, you still need to flexible enough to cater for the dynamics of the audience and what is happening around you.
If the audience is giving you a blank stare you need to have well-developed presenting skills to be able to deliver it in another format or with an appropriate metaphor that this audience can relate to.
Presentation Intelligence ™ is about the art, science and business of presenting. It is not about designing a speech.
Here are 5 tips to get your conversation started:
- Your opening will need to attract attention and incite curiosity
- Be relaxed and speak in a conversational style that showcases your personality
- Know your topic so well that it allows you to be flexible if you need to be
- Choose your stories carefully and ensure they align to your key message
- When delivering your powerful closing ensure you have asked for action or some type of behavioural change.
So, next time you are asked to deliver a speech. Get clarification of what the end goal really is. You may find they want anything but a speech.
Prepare and deliver a powerful commercial conversation from the platform instead.
A conversation that your audience really wants to participate in, a conversation that starts another conversation, a conversation that creates real change.
Paula Smith (Professional Speaker CEP,CSP, Master Trainer and Business Consultant) is an expert in Presentation Intelligence (TM) The art, science and business of speaking.
Paula is also the Director of the Global Institute of Training and Presenting and helps experts and organisations harness the power of Presentation Intelligence to build their business and their brands.