Three hacks to instantly transform any presentation


lectureI’m a great fan of the Lifehacks website – a goldmine of productivity and lifestyle tips.  A life hack is a tip or trick that will helps get things done more efficiently and effectively.  Life hacks are often practical, sometimes funny and sometimes plain hair-raising!

Applying this philosophy, I wondered what are some presentation hacks we could use?  As so often working with leaders on their presentations these common barriers come up:

  • Having to deliver dry, boring content
  • Battling nerves
  • Little or no time to prepare

So, here are some of my favourite presentation hacks.

Write out your key messages on a Post-it note.  Possibly only a couple will fit – this forces both clarity and prioritisation.

Struggling to remember your messages?  Rewrite them as sharp, short bumper stickers, which you are more likely to remember.  Bumper stickers give even boring content that much-needed oomph.

Here’s a structure hack I use often.  Think of three messages and three stories that go with your messages.  This structure is easy to remember for you the presenter and very memorable for your audience.

A bonus hack to tackle nerves and lack of time.  It’s the magic of practise.  Neen James, productivity guru, says: ‘Make time in time’.  So practise while you are driving, walking your dog or in the shower.

What are some presentation hacks you use?  Please share – I love hearing from you.

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10 Comments
  • Sundar Rajamanickam
    Reply

    I download relevant, meaningful pictures and animated images and place it on the slide appropriate to the content. This enables me to remember easity the topic I will need to discuss. It also helps the audience to relate the picture to the content on the slide, remember it longer and appreciate the topic better

  • Christiane
    Reply

    I use the AIM Think on your feet model and love it. Its a google search for the brain to find the right information so that you need minimal notes and just a few key words and symbols to get started, it structures the content for the audience to digest and get the message via the simple principle – “tell them what you will tell them, then tell them, and then tell them what you have told them”

  • Ning Recio
    Reply

    Two hacks I find helpful:

    1. I practice in front of the mirror. It helps me see in real time what I do, the “ums” I say and makes me look at myself! Yes, it’s awkward at first, but you get used to “performing”.
    2. I video-record my practice and review. While this seems like it will take “time”, with video capabilities on our phones, etc., this can be easy and fast to do nowadays. Once you’ve recorded yourself a few times, you start to know your bad habits well.

    • Yamini Naidu
      Reply

      Ning, love it, thanks for sharing both your hacks. Both the mirror and video are great feedback loops.
      Best wishes
      Yamini

  • Megan
    Reply

    Thanks Yamini, this is great inspiration for me as I, like Caroline, am currently preparing for a presentation. If I think of any other hacks I will be sure to post them.
    Thanks again.

    • Yamini Naidu
      Reply

      Megan hope the presentation went well and necessity is the mother of invention. So sure you will come up with some hacks we can all use!
      Best wishes
      Yamini

  • Caroline
    Reply

    Hello Yamini – perfect timing for me! – I am just writing a presentation this morning and was thinking about speakers I had recently heard who I enjoyed and connected with – Yamini Naidu and Jason Fox were two, at the Future of Leadership. Keen to try your story/message approach – thank you for sharing – and for the inspiration! Caroline

    • Yamini Naidu
      Reply

      Caroline your comment has made my day – thank you so much. Hope the presentation was a huge success.
      Best wishes
      Yamini

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