Saturday, July 31, 2010

Connecting with your Audience... Presentation tips

I was extremely fortunate to have participated in an Apple Distinguished Educators (ADE) Summer Institute several weeks ago. One of my favorite professional development sessions was by Michelle Hamilton, a professional speech coach.

Here are some of Michelle's presentation tips:
  • You have 8 seconds to connect with your audience; use eye contact to engage each person for several moments... don't just glance at a person, finish your thought/sentence while only looking at one person (one thought - one pair of eyes).
  • Always think, and say, "you ..." -- try to work in twenty "you"s to one "I." Don't open a presentation saying how glad you are to be here; the presentation is about them, not you ... such as "Today you are here to learn..." not "Today I am going to teach you..."
  • Start with the end in mind; ask your audience what they need to get out of your presentation.
  • Convince: Deliver only 3 main messages. Our brains are wired to remember in odd numbers (3 - 5 - 7, etc). But, stick to 3 key messages and divide your time equally. Focus on what your audience needs to hear or understand.
  • Whatever it is you need to advocate, be compelling, and engaging.
  • Walk around, touch the wall, sit in the audience to gain their perspective.
  • When answering a question, don't just repeat it, or say it's a good question. Elevate the importance by sharing... "I'll bet everyone would like to know...."
  • Turn your closing into a benefit. Don't apologize for "not getting through all of your information" ... rather, "I'm so glad that you could attend today. We could spend a lot more time on...."
Perhaps these few tips will help you to be, as Michelle stated, "incredibly effective" in your presentations, and your classroom.

No comments:

Post a Comment