Don’t settle for good. Be unforgettable!
Here is a recipe for preparing and delivering a talk that can render you and your message unforgettable:
The three ingredients
An unforgettable moment or event has one or all three of these ingredients:
- It was uncharacteristic of the person or situation
- It was unusual
- It was unexpected
Use any of these in your presentation to aid in your message being unforgettable. I love how a fellow Toastmaster employed this recipe to instill the dangers of riding a bike without a helmet to a group of kids. He dropped a watermelon on the ground. It broke in three pieces and juice dribbled from the bright pink flesh. “That…” he warned his wide-eyed kids, “…is what can happen to your head if you fall off your bike without wearing a helmet.”
Things your audience can look at can add entertainment value and aid in the audience’s retention of your message. Dictionary.com defines visuals as, “A picture, chart, or other presentation that appeals to the sense of sight, used in promotion or for illustration or narration.”
The key word here is “appeals” – when it comes to things to look at, it is good to remember that LESS CAN BE MORE. They serve your presentation best when used to illustrate or clarify your point.
Tom Kirby gives excellent guidance in his 117 Ideas for Better Business Presentations:
- When using a prop such as a book, magazine, picture, etc., be sure to hold it up long enough for the audience to see.
- Use a few well-conceived visuals that are memorable rather than many ordinary, boring charts or slides.
- Use color to highlight key points.
- Explain exactly what each item means, so the audience doesn’t have to guess. Even if it’s fairly obvious what’s on a chart, it’s a good habit to repeat it verbally, thus adding reinforcement to key points. [If being recorded, it helps the listening audience to “see” your presentation!]
- When possible use your hand to point. Most speakers misuse pointers, especially the retractable types. (Have you ever seen a speaker with a retractable pointer who didn’t play with it at least once?)
- After you’re through, cover it up. Don’t give the audience something to distract from what you’re now saying.
- When possible, do not turn your back to the audience to read the screen.
- 3 bullet points work best, six maximum.
- Make points brief. Don’t use whole sentences.
But after reading The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience I feel very different about the use of ANY bullet points in a PowerPoint show. I HIGHLY recommend this book. Steve Jobs was the MASTER of communication (and innovation) In this book you’ll learn what Steve did to create loyal, raving fans.
1 inch letters for 30 feet or less
2 inch letters for more than 30 feet
o3-inch letters for more than 50 feet
Here is a FUNNY clip on how NOT to use PowerPoint by comedian Don McMillan Enjoy!
Dan has several funny videos about PowerPoint. Enjoy!