Most audiences do too!
Most people think this type of presentation is reserved for scientists, researchers and engineers. Actually, you most likely give this kind of presentation and don't even know it. Anytime you explain what your business does and how it does it – that's a technical presentation. Have you ever given a demonstration on how to do something? Explained an abstract concept like faith? Both technical presentations!
Presenting a technical speech is one of the biggest challenges for speakers. Here are 3 tips to make your next technical presentation transform from boring to soaring!
Tip #1 – Better Know the Audience
Before giving any type of presentation, you have to know WHO you are presenting to. What is their level of expertise in your topic? Do they understand the specialized language? Why are they listening to your speech? Try to find out as much as you can about the audience so you can meet their needs in the presentation.
During the presentation observe the audience and assess their understanding. For more tips on connecting with an audience, check out this post on how to Keep the Audience NEAR.
Tip #2 – Stories are the Best Way to Connect
People respond to stories. It draws them in and makes them want to know more. Every time I give a research presentation, I start with a story. It can be about how I relate to the topic, an interesting a-ha moment I had while conducting research or even someone else's story that relates to the speech.
Even the MOST technical of presentation can incorporate stories. You just have to be creative in finding the narrative that fits.
Tip #3 – Relate Numbers to the Audience
There are only 56 days of sun in Seattle, WA.
I'm not trying to get your pity. That is a paltry number of sunny days, but there is a better way to relate that number in a more engaging way to the audience.
Numbers are abstract. The bigger the number the harder it is for the audience to relate to. Instead of saying 56 – try in a typical month there are less than 5 days of sun in Seattle – that's just a bit more than one sunny day per week. Makes that dismal 56 downright abysmal in the eyes your audience.
Here are more great tips for visualizing numbers from Ethos3 – The Value of Numbers
Technical presentations do not have to be a snore fest! The challenge is to make them understandable so they connect with your audience.
What do you think is the most difficult part of giving a technical presentation? How did you overcome it? I'd love to hear what you think in the comments section.