How to let your message sink in? Become a director and ZOOM in!
The ultimate goal you can attain with a presentation is to get your message successfully across. The last part of your presentation (closure) plays a vital part here.These are the last words the audience hears when they leave the room. So, it is quite important that you grab your chance here. In other words, you need to become a presentation Director and dare to zoom in! Do you want to learn how? Read the Newsletter of June down below.
Article: How to let your message sink in? Become a director and ZOOM in!
Two weeks ago during a training the difference between an effective ending and a not so effective ending could not have been more obvious. Jan finished his presentation by showing a slide with 5 complex, abstract sentences. And while we were reading the text, Jan walked to the slides and read the sentences out loud again, his head turned to the slides. The result; this message did not stick. Once I was out of the room, I had already forgotten about it.
Now, it was Michaels turn. Once he reached the ending, he did something very effective. He pushed the B key, for a black screen. Now all the attention was on Michael, instead of on the slides. He then walked up front, closer to the audience in the middle of the room. Even generating more attention for what he was going to say now.
Then in his own, concrete, concise wording, he effectively told his conclusion and again why this was important. Once finished, a picture as a backdrop showed in a metaphorical way, what he had just been saying. Result: the message stuck. I still know it in fact!
The big difference between Jan and Michael is mainly “attention-management”. In other words Michael is a very effective director and knows how to zoom in on his message. How does Michael do this?
- He does not show the text already. Hereby the audience stays curious. They have to listen. Not giving the audience the opportunity to quickly scan the conclusion and think of something else next.
- He blackens the screen, because he knows attention cannot be at two spots at the same time. (Slide with lot of text and orally giving the information after the audience has already started reading).
- Then he even makes the attention span greater, by moving a bit more up front and standing in the middle of the room and pausing for some split seconds.
- Then in his own concrete, concise wording he gives us the conclusion and why he thinks this is important. This concrete, concise language sticks in the mind, much better, than these long, abstract sentences and Michael knows this. And because Michael stands closer to us, it feels as if he is really sharing this information instead of just telling it like listening by bullitpoints a list of sentences.
- Once finished he shows a picture as a backdrop, symbolizing what he’d just mentioned. Thereby, giving the nail (message into the minds of the people) a final blow.
In other words, Michael literally and figuratively speaking comes close to his audience and really shares his message. Like a film director, he lets the audience zoom in for this important and vital part of his presentation.
Everything Jan did, unconsciously, created distance with his audience. Moving to the screen away from his audience, talking to his slides instead of to his audience, diverting the attention of audience (by showing complex text and talking at the same time) and using long abstract sentences. The result: the message literally and figuratively speaking stays far away.
So my message to you; “be a director and ZOOM in”! A few tiny tweaks of attention management in this final part, can make al the difference.