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Present in 15 Minutes or Less (replay)

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Are you a team manager or a sales director responsible for delivering weekly presentations to your teams? Do you lead conference calls with hundreds of employees listening in? Are you the CEO? If so, resolve to limit your presentations to no longer than 15 minutes--including Q&A.It’s not hard. And in today’s world of YouTube attention spans and tough decisions, your listeners will thank you.  

I love it, this entry from Joey Asher in Fast Company has five tips for getting more across in less time.

Here is what Asher says:


Tip #1 - Half as long is twice as good - Per Asher "Today’s attention spans are shorter. The average YouTube video is just over 4 minutes".  Look at how many scene changes happen in a 30 TV commercial - probably 10-15.  People have a lower tolerance for boredom, don't let them wait too long to get to your point. What do you have to say that can't be said in 15 minutes? 


Tip #2 - Grab the audience like Spielberg - Start strong. Don't waste time thanking people and expressing how appreciative (or nervous) you are.  Grab their attention early before they distract themselves.


Tip #3 - Make the body of your presentation pass the $300,000 challenge - I say it as "what if you were paid based upon what people remember from your presentation."  Asher offers a hypothetical $300K if three out of 20 can remember your top three points.


Tip #4 - Leave lots of time for Q&A - Never present for more than 90% or the time your have been alloted, 50% if you are talking to a room full of managers, and 30% if they are C-Level (CFO, CEO...) execs.  Plan for questions and interruptions, but never end with a Question.  Give a closing statement so that the last thing they remember is not some question that may not reinforce your key points.


Tip #5 - Minimize your slides - Asher suggests 5-10 slides.  I teach that the number of slides is not critical, it is what you do with them.  Dick Hardt goes through 31 slides in the first minute of a 15 minute presentation - and it is very effective.


Great tips and a great way to launch the new year.

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Scott is co-owner of Wave's End Services, LLC, a Colorado-based provider of Web, IT Consulting, photography, video, and training services.