Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Presentation Skills - Interplay

I love to interact with the audience. It is much easier now that wireless microphones are so readily available. I can go right into the audience, I can sit in one of their chairs, I can sit on an audience member's lap if I want to (by now you should have realized that I am inclined to be totally irreverent if I know the audience can handle it).

You don't have to be as wild as I sometimes am to get the job done. You can calmly go into the audience with a wireless handheld microphone. Let the audience members ask their questions directly to you while you hold the mic to their mouths so that everyone else can hear. (Don't forget to bring the microphone back to your mouth for the answer.)

Another technique I use frequently is to speak directly to one audience member. It goes like this, Sharon, this is just between you and me. Whenever I do this, I can see out of the corner of my eye everyone else killing themselves to eavesdrop on Sharon and me. They feel like they are getting to hear something secret.

One-on-one interplay is also good when you are teasing or doing a little roast humor on someone in the group. Joe, lots of people believe that you are one of the top sales managers in the company. . . . Lots of people believe in the Easter Bunny too! I'll go right up to someone in the audience and touch them on the shoulder while I'm talking (don't do this in Asia).

I might say (reading their nametag to get the name) John here may have the highest sales volume, but if his net income is no good, John is not a happy guy. Some speakers make up skits and give the audience members easy, but funny, parts to play. This is just an advanced form of role-playing.

Tom will pay YOU to read this book!