Here’s a great goal for you in your next meeting or presentation. Make it your mission in life to make it easy for people to remember what you say. Have you ever had the experience where a presenter just walked into the room, and from the moment he or she opened their mouth, you were captivated? It has happened to me, but only a few times. But when it does happen, I remember the experience clearly. I remember the topic. I remember the speaker’s name. I remember almost everything.
How do we give our audience that experience? There’s several books worth of content to answer that question, but here are a few highlights:
1. From a CONTENT perspective: Focus on value, focus on key points, get to the point quickly, and share your ideas with specifics and stories. Don’t waste people’s time with minutia.
2. From a SLIDE perspective: Don’t create the visually overwhelming handout that poses as a slide. Make your slides super simple. No complete sentences, and for God’s sake, no paragraphs, please. Just key phrases, and “bursts” of information. And, always make sure you can complete the following sentence for each slide: “My key point on this slide is…”
3. And from a DELIVERY perspective: Speak simply, in complete (and relatively short) sentences. Pause once in a while. Repeat key messages. Summarize things along the way. Introduce key ideas in your open, and repeat them in the close.
This isn’t rocket science, but everyone treats it as if it were.
Make it easy for your audience to remember what you say. That’s a great goal, every time you lead a meeting or a call or give a presentation.
Have a great day.
Does your team:
– Take too long to make decision?
– Fail to ask for what it wants or needs from you?
– Make things too complicated?
– Deliver unconvincing or disorganized presentations?
– Have new hires who are unprepared to communicate in the workplace?
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