When people ask me for advice on creating their presentation I always ask them the same questions. Our natural response when told we have a presentation is to look for an old deck that worked before without even asking ourselves if its still relevant or we dive straight into creating a new one without understanding the end goal.
Here is some questions to ask yourself before your next presentation:
What does your presentation need to accomplish?
If there is one thing you want from today’s presentation what is it? Do you want to connect on LinkedIn? Do you want them to visit your website? Do you want to set up another meeting to discuss more details? Remember “so what”. Is what I am saying helping me accomplish today’s goal.
Why should they listen to you?
Is what I am saying relevant to this audience? I often see people attend events and present information that is irrelevant or missing the mark. Try be informative rather than hard selling add value to the audience.
WHO is the room:
Describe your audience and their environment? If you are about to present find out who’s going to be in the room, then you can tailor your content accordingly, you can wrap your presentation in a story that resonates with that audience. I was recently asked to present at a Irish Business Network, so I was able to gauge the kind of people that would be in the room and tailor my story and presentation so that it was emotive, relevant and informative.
Some questions to ask about your audience: Age, Gender,Demographic,Seniority,Location,Time.
What is your audience looking to get from your presentation? Not only should you understand what your objective is in your presentation but you should also understand why the audience is there today. Ask yourself “What should they FEEL?” when leaving today’s presentation. This will help you greatly in formulating your presentation and story.
How will your presentation fit both needs? Make sure your content is in sync with the answers to your questions. If you feel there is a disconnect between them, go back, calibrate and edit your content until there is harmony between the two.
By asking these simple questions before your next presentation, it will help you in delivering a presentation that is relevant, informative, impactful and engaging.
Unlearning along the way.