Creating Winning Presentations
See the Capture 1 presentation bike Prezi for this blog article here:
We’ve all heard the acronym KISS in business – ‘Keep it Simple Stupid’ – most recently and commonly used by speaker and author Paul McGee. Well I couldn’t agree with Paul more, especially when it comes to creating a presentation. Which is why we have created a simple 3 step system to help you to ensure you don’t just open your laptop and start tapping away in Powerpoint, resulting in a presentation that bores, confuses or bemuses your audience! But that you create something that excites, interests and inspires them to take action, which is surely why you are doing it in the first place? Above, you can go through the visual Prezi which takes you through our Presentation Bike; the Route to a winning presentation.
In essence it is a 3 step system; there is another inspirational trainer, Peter Thomson who says; all good communication is delivered in 3’s, which I think is brilliant (you can tell I have a lot of love for speakers and authors right now!) Even going back to school days we were always taught about the 3 part structure to write an essay but I think it often gets forgotten.
So the three parts to our system are:
The Planning is our front wheel of our bike and the performance is the back wheel. In order to have a good presentation you need to balance planning your content and having a good presentation technique. So equal importance needs to be placed on both of these aspects. Then the production of your visual aids and the content of what you show people and talk about is your cross bar that joins your two wheels together.
We also have an overarching theme which runs through the entire system and which is represented on our bike by the handlebars and that is the OBJECTIVE and allows you to steer in the right direction and actually get to the right destination successfully.
So taking each of these areas in turn –
PLANNING – I bang on about this all the time because in our experience it is where most presentations fail. Lack of planning, means lack of structure, relevant content or time spent considering your audience and what they want to know (not want you want to tell them – a significant difference!!) It’s not rocket science, if you want to create something that works plan it first – as the old saying goes ‘fail to plan; plan to fail’!
We have some tried and tested planning techniques that help us to quickly and effectively plan content, prioritise key messages and create structure that works. To see more about there read here…..
PRODUCTION – so the production of what you create does not necessarily need to be the most polished and professionally designed presentation in the world (although if that’s what you want of course contact us here!) Production of presentation slides is more than thinking of bullet points. It’s a proven fact that if people cannot listen and read at the same time. Therefore if you list 10 bullet points, people will read them and not listen to you. But they won’t take on board what they have read as they are half trying to listen. So you have wasted the opportunity and may as well have not bothered! Think about how you can communicate your message without words. What visuals, images, photos can you use? And better to use more slides with less on them than only a few slides crammed with information. Think about each slide as a billboard – it needs to communicate one point quickly and at a glance. If you do not have the time, ability, resources or ideas to create a visual based slide then draft in some help. It is worth the investment believe me. And if you can’t do that then resolve to using only photos – anyone can import a photo to a slide and put one word text over it! To read more about good slide design read here……
PERFORMANCE – so you have planned, created slides that convey your messages clearly an powerfully, so don’t fall at the final hurdle of actually presenting. Good presentation technique is not about being a professional speaker its much simpler than that – if you know your content, believe in it and deliver it with passion you can’t go far wrong. It sounds obvious but its amazing how many people don’t learn their content and ensure they know it back to front. The most common objection to loosing bullets on powerpoint slides is that people need them to remember what they have to say an to prompt them. In my book this is just lazy. If you are presenting on a subject you owe it to your audience to know more about your subject than them and therefore learn it, learn the structure and know it inside out. This in itself is a massive confidence boost if you feel nervous; knowing your stuff means you can’t get caught out. And being authentic and passionate is something that cannot be knocked. Audiences like to feel smart and like to feel like there is real purpose in what they are being told. So don’t mumble, stumble, look down and punctuate your presentation with ‘non-words’ (ums and args). Have confidence in what you are saying, enjoy yourself and your audience will buy into you and what you have to say!