Killer Presenters unite multiple arts

We are often fascinated by seeing some of the world’s most iconic presenters everyday and what we do not realise is how do they manage to deliver the same amazing experience every time. This is not an art alone instead its a series of art fitted together to design a carefully crafted technique. In my five years of experience with presentation designs and delivery, i have noticed hundreds of speakers share their part of the story with the world.

I tried understanding their styles, key tricks, tips and methodologies and have been successful in compiling the vital components used by them for crafting a amazing experience every time. I have  clubbed my findings in multiple sections to help readers with a structured approach for better understanding. As I move forward, I will cover the sections like Knowledge, Style, Experience, Secret Sauce and Tips which can make you a Killer presenter too.

Knowledge

In today’s age of technology, where ideas and concepts influence the way world think, Knowledge has taken the core of every interaction and communication. It has always differentiated the winners from rest and even the best designed communications fails if they do not have something for their audiences/viewers to take away.

Subject knowledge

Awesome presenters always have the in-depth knowledge of their industry, competitors, trends, innovations, ideas, platforms, journals, media and everything around their subject of interest. This knowledge gives them strength, confidence, clarity and the understanding of the future of the industry. So, as a presenter, its vital to know these things to have an amazing presence of mind. Building and gathering this information will take a natural course of time and gathering this knowledge solely with an objective of becoming a great presenter would not be advisable.

Information structuring

Having an idea is great and sharing it with the world is awesome. The greatest ideas fail if they are not rightly understood by your audiences. The art of explaining an idea lies in how the presenter structure his content in the presentation. A well structured content gives enough room to build the background before revealing the ideas and also makes the revelation incremental rather than bombardment. The structuring of information goes to the deepest level where the presenter needs to understand about every piece of information which the audience should know as a background to under what presenter intends to reveal. The ideal structure can covers different facets like need, consequence, implications, benefits, acceptance, impact, innovation, trends and findings for the topic under consideration.

Simplicity of communication

Simplicity of communication is a pure art. Its a refection of your mindset and how you see the world. The greatest presenters always have this art of simplifying the ideas for their audiences to understand better. This is not a trick but a necessity as the good presenter needs to keep his communication simplified to the lowest levels. Your audience could be from diverse backgrounds and mindsets so simple communication always ensure better acceptance and response from your audience. As an example, try reading the transcript from the speeches of Obama, Pope or the UN President. Their speeches are simplified to the highest levels for maximum people to make a sense of what they intend to say rather than leaving people confused.

Meaningful

As rightly mentioned in the book “Presentation Zen”, a presentation is a small opportunity to make a difference in the world by sharing your idea with everyone and hence the presenter should always think of utilising that moment to share something worth spreading. Audiences often remember people, ideas, thoughts and stories which have the power to bring a positive change.

If the presenter happens to present something technical as an example, then your audience should know why they are there and what change are they going to make in the world if they listen to you. Keep you content meaningful and you will stay your audiences’ favourite always.

Examples

Presenters often encounter a situation where they have to explain some concept, idea or the mechanism by relating it to the real world. So, the presenter should always quote the simplest examples which might have been experienced by almost all the audiences in their daily lives. Quoting day to day incidents & drawing an analogy from them with your concept is an art. The simplest examples are the most influential ones as they keep reminding your audience about you when they experience the same situation quoted in the example.

Style

Apart from Knowledge, the most famous presenters also differentiate themselves by developing their own style which makes them stand out. These styles can usually be developed with experience by analysing the things for which your audience remember you or can be developed with a purpose of getting noticed amongst your audiences. Once established, your audience recognise you with that unique style and create a unique persona about you in their minds.

Catch Phrases

Many presenters around the world have developed their own phrases which they use in their every public appearances or keynote. These phrases not only make a presenter memorable but also makes their audiences feel familiar and much more comfortable. For example, Steve jobs always use to say “One more thing” as his catch phrase and later Tim cook used the same style to woo the audiences. So, developing your catch phrase takes time but it is always rewarding in long run as this sounds original, authentic and promising.

Quotes

Many presenters often tend to develop their quotes, the quotes in which they summarise the learning of their lives or the principles which they have adopted to be successful. It quite likely that your quotes as a presenter will resonate with a lot of people out there in the audiences and they will remember you and feel more connected with your ideologies. Developing these quotes is an art and revealing them to the world at the right time is what I call strategy. Great presenters are often discussed about their own unique quotes which tends to drive a lot of motivation amongst masses.

Tools / Medium of expression

Choice of a right tool is crucial for the success of a presenter in leaving a great experience for its audiences. Presenters have always explored unique mediums or tools to share their ideas with the world. For that matter Presentations, Blackboard, Whiteboard, Projectors, Flip boards, Practical room, Sound systems with head gear, Slates, Augmented reality, Recorded videos and many more are just the tools which are used for the expression of knowledge or idea by the presenters. As we are moving ahead there are a lot of new tools for presentation design which are coming up and address the new age challenges of reach out the audiences. If we talk only about digital presentations, the tools range from Microsoft PowerPoint, Apple Keynote, Google Slides, Prezi, Haiku Deck, Articulate Studio, Adobe Presenter, Slidebean, deck.in, slid.es and many more. All these tools are designed to address the dynamic nature and future of presentations and how audiences engage with the presenters today. So, every presenter must choose their tools wisely depending upon not their own ease but the ease of their audience so that they can stay connected.

Branding

Various presenters around the world have created a brand out of their presentation styles. One great example could be Guy Kawasaki’s 10-20-30 principle which itself has become a brand in the world of presenters while the another famous example is Pecha Kucha events where every presenter have to present exactly 20 slides and they get 20 seconds to speak on every slides. It is also referred to as 20×20 in the world of presenters. Creating brand or a unique consistent style and then writing more about it for people to use can make a presenter shine amongst his audiences. Crafting your own brand in your presentation style is a slow and a very hard process but if executed with proper strategy, it can deliver great results.

There are a lot of key ingredient which make a presenter differentiated, loveable and amazing to hear compared to others. In the second & final article of this series I will discuss about Experience, Secret Sauce and Tips which can help you bring out the presenter inside you for the world to see.

Written By: Aayush Jain

Why do great ideas get rejected?

Have you even been in a situation when you have thought of an idea but that idea has been rejected outright by your friends, family, colleagues, acquaintances, network, teacher, professor, investors or your boss?

And you have always wondered why are they not able to see the potential outcome or the change in can bring in the world?

If you have faced this kind of a situation then you are not the first one. Every day hundreds or even thousand such ideas get killed in Board rooms, Class rooms, coffee shops, metros and everywhere.

Have you even thought of a potential reason of this hard rejection or non acceptance?
Well there are certain reasons which I have been to accumulate from my own experiences and from other which I would like to share. All the readers are free to add their points to the same.

Wrong timing

Been into a situation when you friend starts telling you something in the middle of a movie and you were least interested in listening to him?

Problem: Wrong timing

That is exactly what we do sometimes with the idea. When an idea strike to the mind, we tend to share it instantly without realizing the environment or the state of mind of the person with whom we are going to share it and hence we face a rejection.

Always evaluate the situation or the environment before sharing the “great idea” and the best time to do this is when the person whom you are going to share is in the “mode of listening” rather than talking or questioning.

Ignorance of negative aspects / Feedbacks

The ideator (One who has thought of an idea) rarely sees the negative side of the idea at the initial stages. And when we share it with others, many listeners expose us to the other side of the coin. It could be from their previous experience or a general trend which they have observed somewhere.

Never ignore this, don’t implement or inculcate their point of view instantly but do keep them in your list of “Things to remember” and if this response gets repeated multiple time from others then its a validation of the earlier response.

Past record of the Ideator

If you have a history of coming up with great ideas, implementing them and failing consistently then it is highly possible that people might reject your next big idea as well. The evident reason for this is the past record which forms a negative perception in their mind about you capability.

If this happens, prepare better, try recollecting the mistakes made earlier, don’t repeat them ever after. Think of potential risks/problems with the current idea and be prepared with a solution to tackle them.

Lastly, do all the ground work before even sharing the idea and if situation allows, don’t share the idea at all as it will invite more negative energy only. A basic test run yourself or over the net with like minded community could be a better alternate.

Lack of structured approach

Great ideas are like stories, they tend to fit within the life naturally or themselves become the reason to define life around it. For example, try recollecting how many times you have told your friend about liking someone’s image or post or any other activity on Facebook? (Facebook is also just an idea which has integrated in people’s life and create everyday stories)

So, when an idea is presented, it is important to come up with a story or a structure to explain the role or part played by the idea in the completion of that story. Also explain the potential outcomes of the story without your idea being a part of it. A well defined structure is critical to the acceptance of an idea.

Bad Presentation

Last but the most important aspect is how an idea is being presented. Not everyone gets a chance to do an elevator pitch and not everyone meets the future investor in a pub.

In today’s age of technology, presentations have become the new weapon of expression and people tend to share everything in presentations.

Audiences are bored of same old styles of presentation and there have been sprawling concepts like “Death by PowerPoint” which have created a need to completely reinvent how presentations are to be designed & delivered.

A lot of ideas get rejected because the audience or the listener gets bored with the ugly presentations and tends to bring the discussion or session to an end.

To counter this, spend sometime to work on an amazingly structured presentation. It can really can give wings to your idea and will help you generate the required interest within your targeted audience. Learn how to make good presentation and if you can’t then try looking for some good templates which can help you achieve this faster.

If all the above mention points can be taken care of then the probability of rejection for a great idea will be least and you might get a chance to change the world :).

Written by: Aayush Jain

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