Make your next presentation a success by following this advice from Micah Solomon, a sought-after keynote speaker and best-selling author:
- Don’t be over-rehearsed. Micah credits reality TV with changing what people want from a speaker. Most people don’t expect or want formality and choreographed movements. Balance poise and polish with real and casual.
- Include the audience. Find some way to get your listeners to participate. Poll the audience, ask individuals questions or even bring someone up on stage. That interaction makes them feel like part of the discussion, and that increases their engagement.
- Don’t end with a Q&A. Instead, encourage people to raise their hands and ask questions throughout the presentation. That makes the presentation more interactive and keeps the audience involved from beginning to end.
- Prepare. Solomon doesn’t believe that you can be too prepared when it comes to presenting to others. He says that the anxiety associated with public speaking is usually the result of feeling unprepared, not the act of speaking itself.
— Adapted from “Unprofessional Advice for Professional Keynote Speakers,” Micah Solomon, Forbes, www.forbes.com.