Presentations are one of the most powerful ways to make an idea a reality. When an audience buys in to what you've pitched -- they can actually help your idea manifest. However, less-than-optimal presentations can do more harm than good. Here’s a look at the most common presentation errors we see at GatherRound. Are you guilty of any of these?
We live in a world of distractions. Studies show the average person spends more than five hours a day on mobile devices, and there are more than 2.7 billion smartphone users across the globe. In addition to the proliferation of digital technology, we now also live in a world full of artificial intelligence — a thing that used to seem like the stuff of science fiction movies. In fact, by 2025, experts believe the AI market will be worth more than $100 billion.
In this environment, it's critical to embrace the human responsibility of connecting interpersonally. In the rapid proliferation of mobile devices, we’ve learned people who use them frequently are three times more likely to feel isolated and alone. In a detached world, there's no better time to embrace human connection than when you’re giving a presentation. Here's why, if you focus on crafting excellent stories, you should feel secure in your position of connecting humans, and not worried that robots will ever steal your job.
Picture yourself selling an idea to an audience. Do you want your audience to laugh, or do you want them to be all business? That's an easy answer. Laughing releases oxytocin, the feel-good brain chemical that helps boost feelings of loyalty and trust. Go for the chuckles, and help your audience feel how much they can trust you.
However, it's not always easy being funny in a professional setting - particularly if comedy doesn't come naturally. What should you look for in a joke when you're trying to sell?
When you're delivering a presentation, you might be tempted to look down at your notes or stare at the back wall. However, if you want your idea to stick, we recommend that you look into one very specific place during your presentation: the eyes of your audience members.
Sarah Kimes is Senior Associate Vice President and Brand Strategist at CallisonRTKL, a global architecture, planning and design practice. She leads the brand services team at the Dallas, TX office, and her goal is to connect the built environment to people in a way that's meaningful. How does Sarah create these meaningful connections? She uses powerful presentations to communicate her ideas and build, change and reinforce beliefs in her audience. What makes Sarah such a powerful presenter? Her strengths are threefold: She relies on a dependable process, she has extensive experience in branding, and she's incredibly self aware.