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If you are a professional presenting in business today, it’s likely that you will focus on delivering facts, knowledge, insights, and information. That sounds perfectly reasonable, of course; after all, isn’t that the point of business and all we need to present to succeed?
Ordinarily that would be fine, but the world we live in today is extraordinary, so it’s not enough.
I call this one the connectivity age.
When it comes to presenting and communicating with each other in meetings, professionals in businesses all over the world are crying out for a revolution.
Yes, they want the information.
Yes, they want the facts.
Yes, they want knowledge.
Yes, they want insights.
That will never change, but the time has come when they want all of that wrapped up in something very few presenters are currently offering.
They want you to help them to feel something. They want to connect with you on a human, emotional, and personal level.
If you want to play your part in leading the revolution, then the process begins by focusing on connecting instead of presenting.
The journey begins here.
1. Start with the end in mind
Whether you are presenting a quarterly update in your management meeting, giving a team briefing, or making a sales pitch, the very first question you need to ask and answer is, “What do I want my audience to feel?”
2. Lighten up
Being professional doesn’t mean you have to be deadly serious all the time. Lose the “corporate spokesperson” and lighten up a little. No one likes a “slick” presenter who is so polished they have memorized and acted out every word. Take your message seriously, but focus on relaxing too by using a little humor and crafting a conversation instead of a lecture.
3. Change the way you look at things
I once heard one of my favourite speakers, the late Dr. Wayne Dyer, say, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” I believe that when many professionals are presenting, they often see:
- Their audience as predators and themselves as prey
- Fellow employees from the marketing, finance, IT department, etc.
- The boss and senior management
The best way to connect with your audience is to see beyond their roles and positions and see them as:
- Someone’s son or daughter
- Someone’s brother or sister
- A mother or father
- Someone with hopes and dreams
- Someone with fears and anxieties
- Someone who wants you to help them
- Someone you care about and want to help
4. Imagine this
Before you open your mouth to speak, take a deep breath, pause for a moment, and imagine every single person in the audience wearing a big bright neon badge.
The badge holds the letters PPPMMFS.
Those letters stand for: Please, Please, Please Make Me Feel Something.
The future of high-impact presenting
The future of high-impact presenting entails making an emotional connection. Those who continue to simply present information without helping their audience to feel something will be left behind.
Following these tips will go a long way to helping you to make your audience feel something.