So many presentations are simply a waste of time. Too many slides with too many bullets and not enough stories. Your presentation is a story. It’s a story of how this or that project is doing or it’s a story about the marketing strategy for your organization or it’s a story about how you’re keeping employees safe on the job or…well, you get it, right? You’re telling a story. Brene Brown says, “Stories are just data with a soul.” Thom Hartman says, ” Stories are powerful. If you want people to understand your point and to remember it for a long time, embed the information in a story.” Change your thinking. Change the paradigm. Your presentation is your story! Here’s why:
- Stories elicit visual images and a picture REALLY is worth a 1000 words. (use images not bullets if you use slides)
- People listen to stories. I’ll repeat…People LISTEN to stories.
- Stories evoke emotion and emotion can sell ideas and things.
- Deliver with feeling and passion for your topic.
- Provide eye-contact to everyone in the room. Be sure you have vocal variety and present a confident posture with gestures that feel natural and support your story.
- Speak with a strong enough voice so everyone can hear you.
- Don’t mumble or provide too much information. Be succinct. Take the audience along on the journey.
- If you realize that you’ve forgotten a part of the story, weave it in later.
- Find the conflict, the tension (budget issues, project issues, etc.). What do the “characters” want most? What is preventing them from getting it? How does it all get resolved? How do the “characters” change by the end of the story?
Remember: Just think about how your content is really a story that is unfolding or has already unfolded. Enjoy the process. Speak from your heart!