How to make a presentation without boring your audience

Peter Botting
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How to make a presentation without boring your audience

Not all presentations are exciting. Not every speech will change the world. But giving good presentations and speeches can preserve your world, secure promotions and enhance how much you earn. Which are all nice.

In your business life, you are more likely to have to give a presentation demonstrating your findings, communicating progress or proposing a specific action. It is not always exciting or glamorous, but you still need to communicate effectively with your audience. Whatever your subject, you need to communicate and transfer information without your audience nodding off.

Here are some ways to present information without boring your audience:

Cut the fat

You may be able to speak about the subject for hours - you are an expert on it after all, and you know enough to drone on for days. This is a problem. Please don’t. Being knowledgeable about a subject does not automatically mean that you can talk about it in an interesting way - it often makes you just a niche bore. Write out a script of what you want to say and go through it line by line. Audit every sentence: “Does that really need to be there? … What does it add?” Be a deleter. If your speech or presentation is short and focused you have more chance of keeping your audience awake and engaged.

Know your audience

Knowing your audience will help you adapt your presentation or speech to what they want to hear. Understanding who your audience is, and what motivates them, will allow you to assess how much detail to give, what jargon is acceptable and how to focus your content. And how much you need to slap them into listening mode with your introduction.

Relevance. What’s in it for them?

How does what you are saying make your audience richer, happier, healthier? Remember - it’s all about them. How could they benefit from what you are saying? People are more likely to invest their time and attention when they can understand they could get something back. Take your presentation or speech to their level. You are not there to show off what you know, but to explain how what you know can affect them.

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