If you’re looking for ways to make your next presentation more engaging and interactive, try these ideas. You’ll look like a rock star – and your audience will be very grateful.
It sounds too obvious – yet it works. Start your presentation by telling the audience you want their questions and that you expect interaction. Tell them when you’d like them to ask, and if you’ll have designated times for it.
This will help keep them paying attention and coming up with questions they want to ask you. If you’re speaking at a larger venue, like a conference, Marshall also shows how you can take this idea to another level, inviting the audience to blog, tweet, and otherwise share their thoughts about what they’re learning.
She also offers a provocative idea to put up a sign asking for interruptions at the beginning of the session. It’s a constant reminder to interact.
When it comes to presentations, most of us are used to being talked to, rather than being asked to share our own thoughts. Opening with a question turns this idea on its head. You can ask the audience what they’d like to get out of the session or why they came. You can poll the group for their opinion about a topic.
To make even more of an impact, engaging question in 3d space picture. Wait for the answer. If you suffer the silence for one or two seconds and look like you are expecting a response, someone will answer you!”
One evergreen rule of presenting is to know your audience. One way to do that is to ask them what they actually think. You can go so far as to point to a specific person and ask for their opinion (works best in a small group) or to query a portion of the room.
You want to be tactful and not make people feel put on the spot, so make sure it’s a topic that the person can actually speak to. Encourage them to share, i.e. “Mary, I think your perspective on this is valuable. Would you mind sharing with the group?”