The search for the Global Solution has gone on as long as men have searched for the Philosopher’s Stone (and perhaps even longer, but not jotted down).
Likewise, this is the case for business presentations.
No Easy Way Out
We seek easy solutions, the quick fix, the “secret” to turn a drab, staid, listless presentation into one that brims with vigor, zest, and elan.
An especially powerful presentation.
Failing that, perhaps just something that can flog a bit of life into our tired efforts.
One evening, we may see a memorable, delightful, scintillating presentation. It’s a show that engages us, that sparkles with memorable visuals and that implants core ideas and powerful notions in our minds. A great presentation!
What made it a great presentation?
Many folks answer with one – maybe two reasons. This is akin to medieval alchemists searching for a method to transform lead into gold.
A shortcut to wealth.
And so we contrive abstractions and unsatisfactory responses:
The speaker was interesting.
The topic was relevant and au courant. Torn from today’s headlines!
It was the audience . . . he had a good audience!
But none of these easy answers yield something that we can actually use . . . something we can operationalize in our show.
This is because no easy answer exists.
No one reason. No single technique.
There is no business presentation alchemy. Except in the notion that we must get lots of things right.
The superb business presenter does 100 things right, while the bad business presenter does 100 things wrong.
What are the “100 Things?”
Is it exactly 100?
Of course not, no more than great writing consists in getting exactly 100 things right, instead of getting them wrong.
For any talk, it could be 90 things, or it could be 150 things. Or something else.
The “100 things” trope suffices to convey that great presentations are planned and orchestrated according to set principles that can be learned, and those principles consist in proven practices.
Lots of them.
Practices that replace unthinking habits.
Techniques of posture, voice, syntax, gestures, topic, presentation structure, your expression, confidence, your movement . . . all of these done well or done poorly combine to yield either an especially powerful presentation . . . or a dud.
Go to Scott’s Lessons, the book that inspired and taught Abraham Lincoln as he grew into one of America’s great orators, and you will find a wealth of powerful techniques to transform even the most mundane of speakers into a champion.
More than 100 things? Surely.
The important lesson is that great presenting is assembled from the verbal and non-verbal construction materials we select.
Lots of mistakes make for awful shows. Getting those 100 things right yield a show that’s spectacular for no single, discernible reason. It’s the power of synergy.
Take just one aspect of your show – the way you stand. Have you ever thought about it? Where you stand? How you stand?
If you’ve never given it thought, then you’re likely doing it wrong. To learn how to adopt the perfect (for you) stance, go here and the secret shall be revealed. And you’ll have learned a handful of the essential 100 things to launch you on your way to presentation power.
The next step, of course, is to actually do it. In your next presentation.
More of the 100 Things that constitute Business Presentation Alchemy here.