Nomi Sharan

How to keep people engaged in a presentation

When you give a presentation you’re competing with your audience’s phones.

So how do you make sure they don’t tune out?

The key is to make the presentation more like a conversation.
To get them thinking. To interact with them.
This can be done with very little effort…

Here are 3 simple ways to make your presentation a bit more interactive, whether it’s in-person or virtual:

Before walking them through the data, ask your audience a question – What do YOU think (anything you’re going to inform them about)? Pause and give them a minute to think and respond.

If you’re not sure which question could work best, think of a problem that the audience faces and turn it into a question.

Yes, a story. Even in this serious meeting. And no, it’s not inappropriate or complicated:

♦You don’t need to be a master storyteller to do this well
♦It doesn’t have to be a big drama of struggle and resolution
♦Talk about some kind of change, and how you’ve changed or what you’ve learned as a result of this change.
The secret is in the details you choose to describe – make it easy for your listeners to imagine a scene.

Get your audience to interact with each other by posing a question and telling them to discuss it with the people sitting next to them. Give them a few minutes, then ask one or two people to share what they’ve concluded.

If it’s a virtual presentation, ask everyone to write their answers in the chat, then ask them to take a minute to scroll up and read what others have shared. You can then ask a few people to elaborate on their answers, or to comment on someone else’s answer.

Try one of these techniques and let me know how it goes.
If you have any other ideas, I’d love to hear them – How do YOU keep people engaged in a presentation?