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Presenting - the keynote speaker’s adage

By sealenterprises, Jul 20 2015 08:39AM

So you have been invited or asked to give a speech or presentation to your department, your staff, the board of directors, or to a prospective customer or client. What is the first thing that comes into your mind?


“Why me”

“By when…..!”

“To how many?”


Well they have asked you for a reason and the reason could be any of or a combination of the following:


• Because you are the only person with the knowledge to do it

• You are an expert in the subject matter

• You have presented this topic several times before

• You are an experienced presenter

• You have a way of explaining things

• Your style and demeanor inspires and motivates

• You are the only person brave enough to face the music


Many capable people end up falling flat on their face by giving a lack lustered, boring and uninformative presentation simply because they did not follow three basic rules:


1. They failed to put themselves in the position of those requesting the presentation

2. They did not implement the ‘Who, What, Why, When, Where, With, How’ template

3. They did not practice, hone and practice again and again their presentation to perfection, until they were bored senseless with it


1. You should put yourself into the shoes of the company, organisation or person who is asking you to give the presentation. Ask yourself some questions such as:


If it was you requesting the presentation, what would you want to see, hear and experience, from the presentation?

• How do you take on-board new facts and information?

• What are the various learning styles of your colleagues or those that will be attending?

• Will the presentation be motivating and perhaps inspiring?

• Perhaps you would like new ideas or methods that excite and fire the passion of your existing or newly formed team

• A presenter that shows mastery and command and in-depth knowledge of their subject

• You need a degree of understanding and flexibility in the timing and perhaps time of the presentation due to the logistics of organising staff

• You have a limited budget


2. The ‘Who, What, Why, When, Where, With, How’ template:


• Who will you be presenting to?

• What will you be presenting about?

• Why are you presenting it?

• When will you be required to present it?

• Where will the presentation take place?

• With what apparatus and equipment will I use to give the presentation?

• How will you present it, what will be your strategy and style?

• Getting agreement on the exact criteria you need to meet from the group you will be addressing

• What do you need to know about the group or the client?

• What will you want or expect the client to take or learn from the presentation?

• How will you know you have succeeded in achieving your objectives?


3. Rehearse, practice, and fine tune your presentation again and again and again until you are bored with it. Only when you get to this stage, will you be both competent and confident at giving a presentation that is interesting and informative.


Presentations that evoke change in either perception, understanding or learning, need to be delivered with professionalism, passion and an inner desire to create enough interest, in order to provoke questioning and in turn inspire debate.


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