How do you build the information in your presentation?
More than once people ask me what the best way is to build your information? Or in other words, what would be the best lay-out for a presentation?
Beside the fact that a presentation should at least contain a beginning, middle and ending, there is no clear cut answer to this. It wholly depends on what you want to achieve.
See down below 3 goals/scenario’s you could have and the best lay-outs to support them.
Scenario 1: you want to provide your public with new information. In this case the TTT-structure would be best. What does this mean TTT? Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, and tell them what you have told them. Is that all there is ;-). Yes, it is that simple. People get so much information fired at them during the day. Therefore, using the power of repetition it the most simple and effective means, to get new information across to an audience.
So, for example in the introduction I mention my goal and message. Everybody can be creative, you just need to practise the 4 different skills you need for creativity. Like a muscle you need to practise these. In the middle part I mention these 4 skills and let people experience them. During closure, I repeat my message, and summarize shortly the 4 skills and what we have experienced. Simple, yet effective.
Scenario 2: you want your audience to embrace a new idea. This is more tricky. Since, it is in our human nature to resist new things and ideas. Therefore, you need to go back and forth, back and forth between the situation as it is, without the new idea and how it could be, once the new idea is adopted. Juxtaposing them, as clear as you can.
Like a sailingboat that sails against the wind, you need to go back and forth, to capture the resistance. For more information on this structure watch on youtube or Tedcom the really interesting presentation on “The secret structure of great talks” by Nancy Duarte.
Structure to support conveying a new idea to your audience.
Scenario 3: you want your audience to embrace your information or solution. (a version of scenario 2). This is the problem – solution structure. If you really want people to listen and get involved for your information or solution, you first have to get them involved. And how do you do that? They have to agree and understand the problem!
For instance I can better “sell” my information on creating a good foundation for a presentation, if you understand the problem, that this foundation is going to solve. If you understand the problem, getting entangled into the content, slaving away for hours and not delivering a presentation that gets the message across. In short, a lot of work and no result achieved, you will most probably be keener and more motivated to hear the solution to this problem.
Therefore it is essential that you really understand and let the audience relate to the problem, before you come up with the solution. Often people only mention the solution and forget mentioning the problem altogether. But, you really need them to feed the problem first, or they will not be really inclined to listen.
Hope the above has inspired you and give you a better sense of how you can structure your presentation to support your particular goal.
Kind regards, Mabel