Archive for September 11, 2012

End on a High Note

If you plan to take questions, do so prior to ending your presentation. You’ll want to end on an impactful statement. When you receive your applause, stand there and take it. The most logical reaction to applause is to get off the stage as quickly as possible.

Be sure to be available after your presentation for the audience to approach you. You’ll know when you’ve done a great job when it takes up to an hour to answer all of their questions.

When you have back-of-the-room sales material, this is when you’ll want to present them. Make sure you have a display set up prior to beginning your talk and stand near your products when you’re finished.

Acknowledge Negatives

I have found that it’s best to put all the negativity and the myths out in the open early on during a presentation. When I speak to a group of potential speakers, I know they’re thinking “I’m never going to be comfortable speaking in front of strangers.”

I’ll say something like “I know speaking is the number one fear according to the Book of Lists, and dying is fifth. With that as a given, then most people would rather be in the box than giving the eulogy.”

It usually gets a laugh and it brings the fact out into the open. Then I talk about my early experiences with speaking, which weren’t pretty. I get the audience to relax by relating to their personal experiences.

If there is an obvious belief system that is contrary to supporting your concepts, address it head on. But avoid be confrontational or argumentative at all costs.