3 Characteristics of Amazing Presentations

Solomon Thimothy - November 21, 2012

Presentations are a vital part of any work or business environment. TEDGlobal is one place where you can view presentations of all kinds. Some are bad, some are good, but some of the things you see are downright remarkable. When it comes to making a presentation work, here are the things which tend to come off extremely well:

1. Telling a Story

We remember things which have a point. Charts and slides are perfect for this, but they don’t stick out in the mind. To you, they are just a bunch of facts and figures. Memorable conversations and speeches connect with you. Telling a story is the way to connect with your audience. To give one example, Mina Bissell, a researcher, used a narrative at TEDGlobal to explain how her thought process concerning the structure of cancer changed.

2. Images are Pointless (most of the time)

Images are often known as the things which help to implant things in your mind. Sadly, you are going to see lots of images and most of them won’t be remembered since none of them stand out. Unique images connect with ideas and tend to resonate with an audience. Journalist Andrew Blum once showed a picture of the Internet represented as underwater divers laying cables on the sea floor.

3. Broken Enthusiasm

Eagerness and excitement don’t always translate to an amazing presentation. Just because you decided to use lots of fancy fonts whilst performing a bouncy salesman presentation on stage, doesn’t mean anyone is going to care. Essentially, a great presentation is a conversation. You always remember great conversations. The only difference between a presentation and a normal conversation is that there is a very definite message to be conveyed in a presentation.

Bottom Line

Many of the qualities commonly touted as being needed for a great presentation are actually pointless, providing too much nitty gritty detail, making the actual preparation and delivery far more problematical than necessary. In reality, the things which truly work come from the content and delivery being attuned to the message and the audience. The essence of a great presentation is knowing what to include, what to leave out and how to connect with the listeners.


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