Times are changing. If you want to continue to connect to your audience, be mindful of these trends in public speaking, says Lisa B. Marshall, author, writer, coach and host of The Public Speaker podcast.
- Presentations are becoming casual. People are dressing down so that they appear more approachable, likeable, real and trustworthy. Speech locations are also becoming less formal, steering away from large auditoriums to locations with couches and stand-up bar tables. Take a more casual approach by trading your suit for a business casual look or by changing your location from an auditorium to a coffee shop.
- Audience members want to participate. Your listeners want to share their feedback and comment during the presentation, so give them opportunities to do so. Integrate live polls, encourage your audience to tweet their ideas and questions, or simply call on people to comment and answer questions.
- Present webinars. Webinar popularity is growing, and you can reach a broader audience if you also schedule webinars—rather than sticking only to live presentations. Presenting a webinar is a budget-friendly way to speak to people because it requires no travel and moderate set-up fees.
- Can the formal presentation slides. Lose the over-the-top PowerPoint slides and produced videos and opt for an informal teacher-like approach. Use digital whiteboards or smartboards and actually take notes and draw pictures during your presentation to keep your audience engaged.
—Adapted from “7 Trends in Public Speaking and Presentations,” Lisa B. Marshall, www.quickanddirtytips.com.