In this article, you'll learn...
- Four steps to creating a winning presentation
- How to overcome common presentation challenges
- Ways to gather feedback on your presentation after an event
The Challenges of Presentations
We are truly alone at two moments in life: when we are on stage delivering a speech, and when we die. No wonder people dread what is such a critical part of business life.
Many people detest making presentations. They suffer greatly before the "big day," sweating the content and their delivery, and agonizing about how they will be viewed professionally after the presentation.
Such angst is unfortunate, because with preparation and practice, delivering presentations can be a great way to advance a career and positively promote a company's message. And, dare I say it—it can even be fun!
The difference between failure and success in presentations lies in a couple of important considerations: What is the speaker's objective for the presentation, and what is the audience's payoff for listening?
Constructing a Winning Presentation
1. Research the audience. No presentation can be successful without background research. The best presenters understand their audiences—what their concerns are and what language they speak. The best presenters also understand why they were invited to address the audience. Presenting to customers, for instance, requires a very different approach than speaking to an industry-association audience of peers.
2. Deliver the engaging and the unexpected. The planning process for every presentation includes considering how to engage the audience. The best speakers make their presentations thought-provoking, inspiring, even memorable.