Essentials for Your Business Presentation Toolbox
[feat-img-left] Every construction job requires a different set of tools. Similarly, every presenter needs to have their own “toolbox” of skills and strategies for presenting in a variety of situations. Identifying which of your skills are the right one for the job, or appropriate in the given situation, will help you land your message better and see longer lasting results. This article will help you identify some of those skills for your own “toolbox,” and describes when they might be useful to you.  
A Hook or Attention Grab
Just like with a good book, a good presentation starts with a hook or something that grabs your audience’s attention. This can be a statistic, a little known truth about your subject matter, or anything that will make your audience sit up and take notice. This is a particularly useful tool for presenters who are discussing topics that might not be considered exciting or intriguing to the audience. But if you can start the presentation off on a really engaging introduction, you will be better able to communicate to your listeners and they will be more attentive throughout the presentation.
A Sense of Humor
The most boring presentations are low energy and lack the personalization that accompanies a good sense of humor on behalf of the presenter. If you want your audience to relax and enjoy your presentation long enough to stay interested and engaged, consider throwing in a few jokes or personal anecdotes to lighten the mood. Of course, this presentation tool should be used only when appropriate, but a sense of humor can help you reach your listeners better and make your presentation more memorable.
Relevant Personal Stories
Another great tool to include in your presenters “toolbox” is a series of relevant personal stories or case studies that help drive home your message or key takeaways. These little side stories help audiences appreciate the lesson or training that you are trying to communicate, because it puts the topic in the context of real life. Aim to share stories that the audience itself might have experienced or are likely to experience in the future.
Lessons Learned
Your audience wants to have a real-world perspective shared with them. To meet that need, consider having a section of your presentation simply to share your learnings from your unique perspective. It is so much more effective to learn from the experiences of others, so feel free to share all your mistakes or missteps, and describe how others who follow you can avoid making the same errors.
Audience Engagement and Interaction
The last, but possibly most important, tool in your presenters “toolbox” might be the element of audience engagement. Getting out there and talking with your audience rather than just to them can help land your message and make your presentation more memorable. Whatever it is you’re presenting on, whether a business proposal or a health and safety training, make sure you engage directly with your audience and make them part of the show!
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