Presentations that Persuade in 20 Minutes or Less

Presentations that Persuade in 20 Minutes or Less

If ideas are the currency of twenty-first century business professionals, then their presentations must persuade action. Unfortunately, many fall short. Presentations are critical, yet we too often focus on how slides look or where to stand on stage. Worse, we are prone to pack them with data, charts and graphics for fear of leaving information out. The result is often audience fatigue, information overload, and little chance of inspiring anyone to take action. Communication experts know that shorter presentations are more effective, pointing to the revolutionary success of 18-minute TED Talks as evidence. TED Talks have redefined the elements of a successful presentation and become the gold standard for public speaking. “TED presentations change the way people see the world and they are springboards to launch movements in the areas of art, design, business, education, health, science, technology, and global issues.” Carmine Gallo, Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds, St. Martin’s Griffin, 2015 Even if you don’t aspire to be invited to give a TED talk, you can benefit from learning to sell yourself and your ideas persuasively. As author and communication expert Daniel Pink notes in To Sell Is Human, “Like it or not, we’re all in sales now.” Presentations matter because they are a major way we sell products and services, find investors, establish trust and credibility, and gain support for new ideas. But ideas are only as good as the actions that follow the communication of those ideas. What Makes Presentation Persuasive? Although visuals and delivery matter, the ability to present novel content that makes an emotional connection is at...