Headlines speak for example in effective business presentations

It was a pleasure to once again host a Speakeasy event at our offices in Manchester this evening. Speakeasy as a concept – to assist business owners and professionals craft and deliver their business message – is growing in popularity with 7+ live groups in and around Manchester and international expansion imminent. It is a testament to the hard work and effort invested by its founder, Andrew Thorp.

Alistair MacDonald was an excellent co-facilitator at this evening’s event.

Key learning points in relation to delivering effective presentations for me were as follows:

Start with a headline

Rather than launch straight into the dense detail of your presentation content, start with a teaser headline e.g.

“It was on the 10th January 2010 that my life changed…..I’ll return to the reason for this in a moment but first let me explain how I got there…..”

Think about news programmes and how they craft their message. They always start with short, punchy headlines.  Headlines both frame a story and provide a teaser to pique interest, before returning to flesh out the detail. The same technique can be used with great effect in public speaking.

Tell stories by using the words “for example”

A repeated lesson from tonight’s Speakeasy (in fact from pretty much every decent presentational training event I’ve been to) stressed the need for the presenter to use stories to engage the audience and provide memorable hooks for the audience to take away.

Alistair MacDonald provided a great insight in that he said his ears prick up when he hears a speaker say the words “for example” as he knows a story is imminent. This provides an excellent hook for speakers to remember to use to introduce stories plus it provides a smooth bridge to bring in stories throughout a presentation.

Are there any other tips that you find help turn an otherwise dull, mundane talk into an inspiring and engaging presentation?

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