If you sense your presentations are falling short of inspirational and failing to rouse others to action, it’s probably time for a tuneup, says career and business advisor Beverly Flaxington, who offers six steps to a more powerful presentation.
- Answer the “why?” You need to answer several “whys” before you can really start preparing your presentation, including why this topic, this timing, this audience.
- Name the “who?” You always want to tailor your message to your audience. If you’re speaking to one person or a small group, you can ask what they most want to know to help you structure your presentation.
- Group your information. Organize the information into smaller themed groups, and then divide your presentation into sections that correspond with those groups.
- Incorporate some context. You never want to leave your audience asking “so what?” Present your information with explanations for why it matters to the people with whom you’re speaking.
- Match your audience’s style. Is it a formal crowd or a more casual group? If you adjust your pace, tone, vocabulary and body language to fit the crowd they will be more receptive to your message. This is especially true when you’re speaking to an individual or small group.
- Wrap it up with a clear close. Circle back to the top of your speech and end with what you hoped to inspire the audience to do, and make sure they’ve understood that expectation.
— Adapted from “How can you improve your business presentations?” Beverly Flaxington, SmartBlog on .
Online resource: For more tips, check out "Tame your fears of public speaking: expert tips."