Delivering a powerful presentation is easier than most people imagine. The power is not in the slides but in the message of the presenter. Someone who understands the principles of persuasion can create presentations that captivate people. You can then turn those principles into presentation strategies, which I will be sharing with you today.
The Master Presenter
Vic is a master presenter. The first time I saw him, he delivered a three-minute speech. His words refreshed and energized us. When he was done, we stood up and give him the longest and loudest applause I heard from that club.
Our club was the home to many champion speakers. Our lone prepared speaker for the day was the well-known speaker of a training company known for developing excellent speakers.
But Vic captivated us.
I resolved on that day to learn from him. I sought his advice. I listened to him and I observed how he was able to shine the spotlight on people. Some of the lessons I learned from him, I will also share with you.
I saw and studied other master presenters too. Pagsi can deliver inspirational speeches that make everyone cry, committed to making their dreams come true. He was an excellent and energetic storyteller. I saw speakers like Tony Robbins, John Maxwell, Les Brown, and Lisa Nichols. But the Filipino speaker Pagsi is extraordinary.
You and I can become master presenters too.
Learning and applying powerful presentation strategies can accelerate our growth.
7 Powerful Presentation Strategies
Leaders can increase their impact by becoming master presenters. Yes, some great leaders aren’t great presenters — just as some great presenters aren’t great leaders. What I believe is that mastering some principles and practices in great presentations may amplify your impact as a leader.
Unfortunately, many leaders do not deliberately improve their skills. Either they think it is not important — or too difficult.
If you are one of those who think it is difficult, be happy today. I will tell you how to do it. Then I will share with you strategies from my experiences – and today, from a book.
There are strategies that ordinary people like you and I can master to improve our idea-selling abilities. Dr. Brad McRae and David Brooks in their book The Seven Strategies of Master Presenters asserted that you can also learn the strategies used by master presenters. You will inspire, educate, engage, and empower your people.
I will discuss these seven strategies, then tell you what I think about each strategy.
1. Know your audience.
Aristotle said “know thyself” and I agree with him. McRae and Brooks thought that in order to give high-impact presentations, it is not only necessary to “know thyself,” but you also have to know your audience.
And just because you have been leading your people for so many years, you cannot assume that you know them. Dig deeper. Understand their motivations. Zero in on their pains.
In reality, it is not enough to just know your audience. Fall in love with them so you’ll find all the reasons to make them happy and help them live better lives.
2. Prepare for your big idea.
Master presenters deliver the Big Idea – the solution to the listeners’ pain.
Great presentations are the result of great preparation. It has the intellectual power to move listeners to new ways of thinking and the emotional power to move them to new ways of behaving.
No delivery skills can save a presentation that has poor content. Therefore, Master presenters develop masterful content. In my presentation skills workshops, I emphasize the importance of content over delivery.
Most public speaking schools spend more time on delivery. Dynamic speakers get attention. But they don’t move people to action. They get praises, but they don’t raise you up.
3. Develop effective presentations.
If your audience can’t follow your presentation’s organization or line of reasoning, they will assume that you don’t know the material, haven’t integrated it, are lazy, and don’t deserve their attention.
Master presenters spend a great deal of time not only developing the content and the delivery of their message; they also focus on developing effective organization.
Study techniques that will assure your presentation is impeccably well organized.
4. Develop dynamic delivery.
One time I was listening to a pastor preaching in a service. During his 90-minute monologue, he said that he never prepared for his sermons because it is the Holy Spirit who works in him.
I thought that the pastor needed my help. The Holy Spirit isn’t boring, disorganized, and lifeless.
In fact, the etymology of the word enthusiasm means “God within”. A man who has God in his life is cheerful and full of enthusiasm. God has amazing ways of delivering his message.
As much as I advocate that you give more attention to content – to your message and irresistible offer – I will not be asking you to neglect your delivery.
But let your delivery serve your content. Make it so smooth that people will notice more your content than your delivery. There are dozens of techniques to help you develop a dynamic delivery.
5. Make your presentation memorable, actionable, and transferable.
A common weakness of many presentations is that a month, a week, or even a day after the presentation, no one remembers what it was about.
Or, if they do remember something about it, they are not doing anything differently than they were doing before the presentation.
Therefore, for your presentation to be effective, you must actively work to make it memorable, actionable, and transferable.
There is a great deal to consider in bringing this strategy to fruition, but it pays big.
6. Deal effectively with difficult participants.
Difficult participants can knock us out of the zone of peak performance and they are likely to appear when we least expect them.
There are two types of difficult participants: situationally difficult and chronically difficult. Master presenters do not get discouraged by these individuals, rather, they learn from them. When it comes to dealing with difficult participants we have three choices: We can become a victim, a survivor, or a thriver.
Learn how to be a winner every time.
7. Strive for total quality improvement.
Master presenters have developed their presentations and their reputations by using Total Quality Improvement.
Learn how to take your presentations to the next level by maximizing the benefits of practice sessions and salient feedback. Develop the deep structure of your presentation and how to develop command (stage) presence.
To learn these seven strategies, begin with the first one. Devote a week to learning more about your audience. Strategies two to seven will eventually become clear to you.