Steve Kaye, Ph.D.

Article Summary:

Ten tips for better presentations.

Better Presentations

1) Leave the audience impressed with themselves.
Create opportunities for people to be funny, clever, or correct. Feed the audience set up lines that lead them into being the stars in your program. Ask question that let them show off what they know. This facilitates adult learning by making people feel special, which opens their minds to new ideas.

2) Be the message.
You must exemplify the principles, values, and ideas that you talk about in order to have credibility urging others to adopt them.

3) Be original.
Create your own cartoons and humor. Tell your own stories. Use your own activities. Stealing from others is unethical, illegal, and just plain wrong. You can be sued by the author (or cartoonist) for using copyrighted materials, such as cartoons from the newspaper. And you could find that your presentation follows one with the original versions of material that you planned to use.

4) Be ethical.
Cite references for published information. Obtain a license and pay royalties if you must use copyrighted materials. Realize that other speakers (authors, cartoonists, humorists, entertainers, etc.) depend upon their materials for their livelihood.

5) Create a safe environment.
People learn best when they feel safe to experiment and try new ideas. Treat everyone with respect. Never damage anyone in the audience, even if this person seems to be disrupting your presentation.

6) Let people discover and experience new ideas.
Adults learn by applying what they are being taught. It makes learning more permanent and enjoyable.

7) Be authentic.
That is, be yourself, without pretense, without gimmicks, and without theatrics. People can recognize a fake easily. And when they find one, they leave.

8) Keep it simple.
People benefit most from techniques that they can use now.

9) Think like the audience.
Present your ideas from the viewpoint of how they will find them most useful. Realize that things that work for you, may depend upon your situation. Thus, customize new techniques to the world that your audience lives in.

10) Speak to them about them.
Everyone finds their own story the most interesting. If you tell your story, then take them with you by including them in your story. Help them experience what you felt, discover as you learned, and celebrate as if they had won.

Steve Kaye, author and IAF Certified Professional Facilitator, helps leaders hold effective meetings. His facilitation produces results that people will support, and his innovative workshops have informed people nationwide. Call 714-528-1300 or visit his web site for over 130 pages of valuable ideas. Sign up for a free newsletter at

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