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What Was That All About?

Posted on October 30, 2006

By Scott Schwertly

Have you ever asked yourself this question when walking away from a presentation?  Maybe you didn’t ask this question, but you caught yourself checking your watch every 10 seconds wondering when the agony was going to end.  Don’t worry.  You’re not the only one who feels this way.

As a meeting planner, make sure the next time you hire a “well-known speaker,” you get a return on your investment. When hearing a presentation, the audience is expecting to get something in return for their most precious asset – their time.  Unfortunately, too many speakers disappoint them.

Here are some “essentials” to ensure you are getting everything you expect from the presenter you hire:

• The speaker must have only three points – no more, no less
• The speaker must not use bullet points
• The speaker must have a beginning, middle, and end
• The speaker must preview and review his or her content
• The speaker must know his or her audience

I have wasted too many hours and minutes of my life listening to speakers who were aimless and unmemorable.  Public speaking is all about sharing knowledge to help others grow.  Help your audience walk away with something meaningful, and most importantly – something that is memorable and life changing.


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Joan Eisenstodt

Scott - It depends - on the learner and whether the speaker is a 'speaker' or a trainer or facilitator. I prefer to view speakers as either of those v. those who 'stand and deliver.' I've found that many people like bullet points - that they learn in bullet points and can then remember information. Again .. it depends on how one learns. I see the issues as 1) know one's audience, 2) be prepared to interact to increase value, 3)use improv when it appears you are not on target. I'll stop - I've done 3 points and alas, used "bullets"!

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