Tips for a successful presentation

April 25, 2011

Dale Carnegie once said, “An effective speaker knows that the success or failure of his talk is not for him to decide. It will be decided in the minds and hearts of his hearers.”

So with that said, do you know what it takes to earn the respect of your audience? Dale Carnegie Training of Birmingham offers several tips to help you bring your presentations to the next level.

Consider yourself honored by being asked to address an audience – and say so. It never hurts to begin a speech by thanking the hosts and the audience members who are taking time out of their busy schedules to listen to what you have to say. It helps you start the presentation on a positive note.

Give your listeners sincere appreciation. This can be something like thanking them for coming or showing gratitude when someone offers up an answer to your questions during your presentation. Reward your attendees for participating, and shine a spotlight on them if you can.

Mention the names of some listeners. Dale Carnegie tells us that a person’s name is the sweetest sound in any language, so ask for first names when attendees offer up anecdotes or answers to your questions. It’ll have more impact than you realize.

Talk in terms of your listeners’ interests. If you’re talking to a group of insurance salesmen, make sure you use facts, figures, examples and anecdotes relevant to their industry. If your example is about a bakery, it might not resonate as much with this crowd.

Appeal to the nobler emotions of your audience. What do they hope to get out of your presentation? Do they want to be fired up and motivated? Do they want to make more sales in the next quarter. Be very cognizant of their needs and tailor your speech accordingly.

All of these tips seem like common sense, but they’re not always common practice. With a little finesse and by adding a little personality into your presentation, you’ll find your attendees are receptive and eager to implement your ideas.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Birmingham, Alabama, providers of professional development and management development courses and information in Birmingham, Alabama. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @DaleCarnegieALA.

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