Most of us need to do presentations of some kind.
- Speeches to persuade.
- Talks to inform.
- Review meetings.
- Project plan communication meetings.
- Inspirational workshops.
- Training sessions.
- And Henry V "all things are ready if our minds be so" talks to get people ready to go forth and conquer.
I like this post from Presentation Zen. It shares strengths of three popular speaking pros - Tom Peters, Guy Kawasaki, and Seth Godin. I have seen Peters and Kawasaki in person, but not Godin. If you have never seen these fine fellas in action, click through to the Presentation Zen post because it contains links to see clips of each.
Sure - they are big time pros who make lots of money to present. What's interesting, and it goes beyond these three guys, is that the better they are, the less formal they are.
The better they are, the less formal they are.
When I see someone sitting on the corner of a table who cares enough to have an authentic conversation, I take notice. I look for the nearest exit when subjected to a slick over practiced roadshow.
Not that these guys don't practice. They do. They practice being real and compelling.
What should we learn from this? The special sauce in presentations is:
- Bringing ourselves to the conversation
- Great information
Good sense of humor and ding your homework helps a lot too. I did a presentation earlier today. It was fun. I enjoyed it because it was like having a conversation with friends (I did not know these people). Sure, I prepared and gave them information and inspiration. I had a PowerPoint presentation. I had a handout. AND it was like having coffee with a friend. I could be me and they could feel comfortable being themselves - that's the definition of intimacy.
Check out the videos from Tom, Guy, and Seth and then think about your presentation style. What do you like about their approaches?
One more thing about Tom Peters. I love his fascinating facts and wonder how he gets them. Does he have a research assistant?