Your Opening Minute
"Most presenters are at their worst in the first minute of
their presentation. Their voices are soft and cracking, their
inhibited gestures look like tics, and they're babbling some drivel
like "good morning, ladies and gentlemen...." Now let's
think a minute. When do you think the audience is making its most
critical evaluation of you as a presenter? Right. That first minute
when you're at your worst.
If you don't begin your presentation with a dynamite, MEMORIZED
opening, you might as well walk up there with a sign hanging around
your neck that says, "Presenter Trainee".
"When was the last time you heard a presentation that was
too short? Since you'll never know exactly how much information
to give an audience, you're either going to give them too much
or too little. Dull presenters give too much. Great presenters
give too little information presented in an exciting way. That
leaves lots of time for audience questions and that's good."
"Oh please, let's not be silly."
"Some people really believe Power Point can "rescue"
a dumb presentation. Of course some people believe in the Warren
Commission Report and the Easter Bunny. Now you shouldn't make
fun of these people - but you really don't want to hang around
them for any length of time either."
Audiences - 1
"Most audiences have the attention span of retarded goldfish.
Although good presenters can trip along at about 150-160 words
per minute, most audience members can think four or five times
faster than that. And if you're a typical presenter,
one suspects they're not thinking of you. What's that you're telling
me? They look like they're paying attention? What they're really
doing is practicing a skill they learned in the
first grade: pretending to pay attention'. Just don't call on
"In presentations, audience perceptions ARE reality. If you
can understand this one concept, you're on your way to being
a great presenter."
Presentation Boredom and Health
"Sometimes, when I've listened to some dull mope read to
me screens full of information which I could easily read myself
(if I had any interest), I think, 'I'd rather pass a kidney stone
than another minute listening to this nit. Why did I get into
this line of work?'"
"If I was given just six months to live, I'd fill the time
listening to business presentations. Then, to me, six months would
seem like a frigging eternity."
Of couse there is much more in my