iSpeakEASYblog

3 Elements Of An Effective Talk

In business, Business Presentations, Communication, Public Speaking on October 26, 2017 at 2:27 PM

Would you be a more effective speaker if you knew exactly what your audience wanted? Would you be more efficient in your prep time if you had a clear idea of the target before you began planning your presentation?

There is good news! A recent survey conducted by Andy Goodman tells us just this. Information was gathered from more than 2500 people who both watch presentations and make presentations. This data produced a list of the three qualities audiences most want in a presentation.

Clarity

A well-designed talk is organized and centers on a single main message.  This message is crystal clear and uses up to 5 sub-topics to support it. Audiences are less interested in your data and more interested in your message. Keep it short and to the point. Often in preparing talks, we come up with multiple messages. Write all of these down and then find the one overarching message that incorporates as many of these as possible. Be clear in your mind as to what you want to say and this will help the audience understand your message.

Interaction

Audiences are intelligent! They are more interested in feeling a part of the learning process and less interested in you being the “expert source of information”. More than just the standard question and answer session, audiences want the opportunity to interact with the speaker and with members of the audience. Ask many questions, encourage dialogue, and find innovative ways to have your audience work in small groups to “discover their own data”.

Enthusiasm

Energy, charisma, passion – the audiences interest is perked when the speaker exhibits these qualities. Face it – when the person speaking looks as excited as a bowl of oatmeal, it is hard for the audience to get excited. Enthusiasm is contagious.

Four additional qualities that rated high in the survey were humor, use of stories, relevance, and well-produced visuals.

Clarity, interaction, and enthusiasm are qualities audiences want the most! While this research focused on formal presentations, the principles will work when you are speaking one-on-one or to small groups (such as at staff meetings). Use these ideas to help improve the effectiveness of your presentations today!

 

 

Source: “Why Bad Presentations Happen to Good Causes”, Andy Good and Cause Associates. 2006

© 2007 by iSpeakEASY – All rights reserved. This speaking tip is one in a series provided to you by iSpeakEASY. For information on workshops and coaching, contact us at Ethan@iSpeakEASY.net

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