Deliver a Memorable Presentation

I used to joke with my colleagues that I am a “Power Ranger”, one who is good at preparing PowerPoint slides. Presentation is a key staple in the corporate world. Be it an internal meeting where an idea has to be shared and approval sought or for marketing your product to the target customers in a seminar. Churning out beautiful PowerPoint slides with great pictures and beautiful transitions is good, but not great. A great presenter has to be a “Transformer”, transforming ideas into impactful messages.

As with all masterpieces, this requires hard work and effort. It is a form of respect to the audience to prepare your presentation to make sure you are not wasting their time.

1. Start with the end in mind: What are you trying to tell us?

Delivering a presentation is like making a movie. There must be a key theme behind the story. Do not pack too many things into one presentation. You can achieve more with less. If your audience will only remember one thing, what would that be?

In preparing the presentation, it is critical to start from the audience’s point of view. What do they want to get out of your presentation? Very often, we get carried away by what we want to say and not what the audience wants to know.

A presentation should not be a one-way street. It has to be a conversation. Imagine answering the questions in the audience’s mind. Simon Sinek shared that every great communication starts with “Why” before “What” and “How” (Ted Talk: “How great leaders inspire action”). Without answering the key question of “Why”, the audience will not be interested in the “What” and “How”.

2. Be engaging: Why should we pay attention to you?

We often observe the audience starting to check on their mobile devices barely five minutes into a presentation. In this social media age, we are constantly seeking to be entertained and engaged. The mind wanders off if you are not engaging.

Slides should be used only when needed to reinforce a message. Many presenters are using slides as their crutches to push along the delivery of a message. Recently, I attended a seminar of a world renowned expert in business franchising. The speaker was very clear in his delivery and the audience benefited greatly from his sharing. The problem lies in his PowerPoint slides. The background color is distracting for the eyes and clip art pictures that look outdated make me think that it was created probably 5 years back and reused since. It is such a waste to let a bad PowerPoint deck discount the effect of your presentation. The feeling is like having a conversation with a respectable figure who has vegetables from his lunch stuck between his teeth.

If you wanted a change from the usual slideware, try Prezi, a cloud-based presentation software (http://www.Prezi.com). It is a good tool to use in providing a clear flow of thought for the audience. Regardless of the tools used, remember that it remains as a tool. Your flow of delivery should take the center stage.

3. Be memorable: tell me stories

Researchers in Spain has found that different parts of our brain are activated when a story is being told. If we are listening to a PowerPoint presentation, our language processing parts in our brain (Broca and Wernicke’s area) get activated. If a story is being told, other parts of our brain that we use in experiencing events are activated as well. That explains why we can remember stories that were told during presentations, but not the long PowerPoint slides even with the best visual aids.

I remembered attending an internal communications session a few years back where there were many presentations lined up for each business leader to share their quarter’s results and focus. The head of consumer business walked up to the stage and asked the audience if we could understand the urgency and importance of improving the organization’s customer experience. While we were expecting the usual slides of statistics, he surprised us by playing a live recording of a call center agent handling a frustrated customer’s call. The 5 minutes of recorded conversation still ring in my ears as I recall the session. The frustration of the customer in being asked to repeat her problem and being passed from one department to another brought the problem alive. It was impactful.

Think of a story that your audience will be able to relate to and deliver it in the form that will be the most impactful. It can be a recording of real customers’ experiences. It can be your own personal experience or a story that illustrates the key message.

Tell a good story and your audience will never forget the message that you are putting across.

With Christmas Decorations in Place, We Think of the Presents!

With Christmas decorations in place we turn our thoughts to presents to give to others. If someone has a fancy for cooking a wheel of cheese will be a thoughtful gift. We can give cheese of many flavors to them before the Christmas celebrations and it can be used to cut up with fruit to make a nice appetizer platter.

There are many kinds of cheeses with specialties made worldwide. One cheese is made with buffalo milk to give it a different flavor. The base for other cheeses can be found to be made with goat and sheep milk. For a special someone there are cheeses shaped like pears and dipped in wax to keep it pretty. Some are made with portabella mushrooms and some mellow with wine, this would be special for Christmas. If the cheese you give them is from another country make sure you give the companies time to receive it for your holiday giving.

There is the traditional colby or cheddar cheese that you can use in your recipe for cheese balls. Cheese balls are easy to make using cream cheese with onions and spices of your preference. Mixing them up together to let all the flavors meld together.

You can place your homemade cheese balls in a wooden bowl, or wrap it up and set it on a cutting board. When you get someone a cheese block you can include a cutting board made out of marble keeping the cheese cool til you have the job complete.

This is a perfect Christmas present for anyone that loves to eat. They can use it to make their own grilled cheese or nachos. They will remember you long after the holidays. Most of the cheeses included are easy to keep and some will freeze.

Direct Selling Business Presentations

Home Party Plan Presentation Tips

There are many different types of selling in the marketplace today. Whether it is in a retail store, house to house, on the Internet, or with home parties, the basic principles have not changed over the years. To be successful there are many factors involved and that is why direct sales training is a good idea, especially if one wishes to improve their techniques, learn new tips or are new to the business.

With today’s economy, many people are trying to earn extra income. As a result, some are going to the Internet or to direct marketing companies who have a product and engage a person as a private contractor to sell their goods. This has been especially effective for those who have home parties and invite guests in to view the product firsthand. Having personal contact in a comfortable location leads the potential buyer to feel at home and avoid the pressure of direct selling. Having some refreshments and small prizes also adds considerably to the atmosphere.

Training From Your home party Corporate Headquarters

There are a number of excellent home party companies which specialize in this kind of training. The headquarters which provides the product, for example, will often have representatives available to personally disclose techniques and selling ideas that have proven effective over the years. Many have found that presenting the products in their home has been very successful.

Direct selling involve many things that have proven effective over the years. The basic premise is that one must be ethical, believe in what is being sold, and be able to stand behind the product. With this foundation in place one is ready to proceed with training to be a successful sales person.

When trying to present one’s products to others in a direct sales setting, knowing how to present a knowledgeable and clear picture is essential for success. Know the product or program, have all the facts, and present them in a manner that is clear, concise and understandable. There is nothing worse than attending one of these home show and hear someone reading from a piece of paper. Being able to make an effective presentation which involves potential buyers, and knowing the answers to any questions that might be asked, are essential for success.

With the proper home party training it is possible to learn how to work on one’s strengths to develop a way of making a presentation that is instinctive, giving one the appearance of confidence and trust in their product. Selecting the correct program and having the guidance of someone knowledgeable in the field makes it possible to move forward toward success. Once trained, someone in the home party business will be able to establish themselves as a base for people to come back to when more of the product is needed.

In addition, recruiting others to also sell the product will, over time, increase the business considerably with extra pay. A good party plan business takes advantage of the ability to make money at the show or home party but also by growing a sales team and teaching them how to do the same.