The #1 struggle we hear when coaching a presentation team is, “How can we make technical information interesting? How do we talk about schedule and budget? It’s so boring.” Boring presentations lead to losing important projects. How do you turn that around?
The answer is simple and fun.
Raise your hand if you have an inner geek. Don’t worry – no one’s watching! Are you that person who knows more about building codes than anyone else on the planet? Is it a game to you to make the numbers balance on that cost projection? Thank God for you and your inner geek. Your geek is your talent, your special gift, and it’s what makes you great at your job.
What does geekness have to do with presenting? Everything! Geeks have fun doing “that thing” that they’re geeked about. People are usually good at things they like doing, and clients hire people who are good at what they do. Ergo, people hire geeks!
Problem is, we believe it’s inappropriate to let our geek show up at a presentation. We say, “We must appear and sound professional,” which will lead you straight to boring.
Here’s what to do. Now, some of these ideas may sound a little crazy, but hang in there. You’ll get the results you’re looking for – a memorable technical presentation!
Brainstorm Your Geeky Story
1. Give yourself 30 minutes to brainstorm.
2. The geekier the ideas, the better.
3. Don’t delete or edit your ideas. Everything is valid.
4. (Crazy part – takes 2 minutes!) Before you start, move your body. Shake, dance and sing. Yes, I said, sing! Take a deep breath, and you’re ready!
5. Some jump-start questions:
- What would I really like to say (I wouldn’t say it), but what would I really like to say?
- What’s the thing about this building code or cost projection or whatever that turns me on?
- What’s my secret sauce? How do I secretly make it happen?
- How would I explain what’s fun about my job to a 5-year-old?
You’ll be amazed at your discoveries. Take those golden nuggets to your group rehearsal and give them a try. Be careful! Don’t water them down, clean them up or professionalize them. Keep ’em geeky; we wanna know why those building codes rock!
You will have just found the key to a winning presentation by bringing your technical material to life!
Your presentation (and secretly, database) geek,