Audiences- listening or participating?

At a recent Impactful Presentation Skills workshop, participants were shocked with an aspect of presentation that they did not think they needed to imbibe. Be a participatory audience.

“But what has that got to do with improving my presentation skills?” “If that person was a better presenter we would not get bored and switch off!”

There are several reasons why being an attentive and participative audience enhances your own presentation skills

Conspire to create Constructive Meetings

1.     If the discussion is veering off the topic to minor/irrelevant areas- call attention back to the topic.

2.     Ask a question to help reiterate a point that will help the discussion/decisions to be taken.

3.     Add an example or story to elaborate or validate a point (without taking too much time or attention).

4.     Ask for decisions/actions/next steps in case the speaker has not

Create a culture of respect to a presenter

1.     Make it a culture to be “in the present” at a meeting. Today most people are on their phones or messaging or doodling and are not concentrating on the speaker. This can be very disruptive, disrespectful, disheartening and a waste of time!

2.     Collaborate with speakers and enhance the quality of meetings/discussions.

3.     You will get the same attention when it is your turn as a presenter.

Learn from them. Pay attention to presenters. The learning is huge.

1.     During the presentation, what got you hooked from the beginning?

2.     How did they evoke or manage audience interaction?

3.     What did you like about the way they presented?

4.     What story or style did they use that you can use yourself?

5.     What distracted you?

6.     Did they hold your attention? How?

7.     Did you get a clear message? How?

8.     Remember- your distraction will lead to people around you fidgeting and getting distracted. The speaker notices that and then tries to course correct or loses steam.

If we all pay attention to each other at meetings or discussions and help each other stay on track and contribute constructively- we will be able to have more constructive meetings with more consensus around the table.

This content was created for a Birla Sun Life Insurance web portal

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