If you don’t communicate quickly in a manner that is compelling…

the conversations you want to have happen don’t happen.

We’ve all been there. We start with great expectations. Can’t wait to hear what will be said, how we will then be motivated to contribute and then how eager we’ll be in wanting to follow up on all the next steps and actions that will be communicated. Maybe even the prospect gets ready to want to do business with you.

But, then very shortly after the presentation begins, we’re looking at our phones seeing what emails we need to answer or, yes, truth be told, seeing if Red Sox won last night! Or, the prospect is thinking of the other supplier and why they’re the better choice.

The presenter is putting us to sleep. How does this happen?

A great SlideShare recap pointed to several presentation flaws:

– Making a long, too long, introduction, talking about stuff that takes too long to say before moving onto the presentation topic.
– Speaking in a monotone voice, taking away the excitement of what you say or what you want your audience to hear.
– Making sure that your audience really hears what you’re saying and why you’re saying it.
– Disconnecting yourself from your audience by reading what you’re presenting vs. looking at your audience.
– By standing still and not using body language and movement.

That’s the terrifying world of PowerPoint presentations.

What about team meetings?

If you don’t communicate quickly in a manner that is compelling then the rest of what you’re trying to accomplish may not get heard. Instead, as noted in a Business New Daily blog, you hear complaints like:

– There was no specific action items or takeaway points.
– There was no clear purpose or objective.
– It was not inspiring or motivating.
– The organizer was not organized or prepared.
– The need to repeat information for late arrivals.

Getting the audience engaged at the start

Now, the PowerPoint presenter or meeting organizer may have had all the right intentions and goals, and while there are a lot of good websites with a lot of good hints and suggestions to improve presentation skills and materials and how to create strong staff, team or company meetings, one area to think more about is how to engage your audience at the start of a presentation or meeting.


– Give yourself 60-seconds to state the PPT’s or meeting’s purpose. 60-seconds, no more.
– Think single-minded as most people can only hear one message at a time.
– Think of this as a blog headline or subject line on an email blast. You want people to read your blog or open your email and you do that with a strong or provocative headline. Do the same for your meeting.
– Newscasters give you a hint of what’s to come at the 10 pm news. Hosts on sports or news radio tease the audience on what to expect after the commercial break. Do the same for your meeting.
– Create intrigue. Use humor, if helpful. Bold statements stated with confidence.
– Know your audience, know their goals, priorities, and the key issues they have and talk to them on their terms with words, phrases and content that they can identify with vs. what you think they should hear.
– Prepare and practice this opening. Don’t say something on the fly and expect it to resonate.

If you do communicate quickly in a manner that is compelling then the rest of what you’re trying to accomplish will get heard.

For help with this short-form messaging, reach out to us.