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Like a TED talk

A few times this past year, several clients asked me what “the boss” meant when he or she said, “Make it like a TED talk.” Everyone who sits in on PowerPoint presentations would love it if presenters came across “connecting” better with the audience. Like all those who have done TED’s, I’ve done the same presentation over and over again and, humbly, I’ve gotten pretty good at it. Why not? We’ve written, practiced and performed the same material A LOT. All of you would too if you were doing your presentations as often and on the same material. So it’s really unfair to ask you to act as if you do when your PowerPoint decks are not always the same and you are not “performing” regularly. There’s a lot of tips for you but let’s start with your “start.” The opening four thoughts to every presentation (and all of them spoken while the Title slide is showing) follow the acronym S.T.A.R. So here we go:

(S for SET THE CONTEXT:) “About a ____ ago, I was having a conversation about ______ with _______. She asked me this question: ‘_________________________________.’ I told her that _____________________. Her question and my response to it goes right to the heart of what I’m going to be talking about today which is:

(T for Title:)________________________________.

(A for Agenda:) I’ll start by laying out _________. After that, I’ll move on to __________. Finally I’ll describe ___________________.

(R for Result:) I hope as a result of what we go over today, you’ll leave here with enough clarity and information to help you make a decision.

Let’s get started.

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