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How to Start a Great Presentation

If you’re like most people, the start of your presentations suck.

Sorry, I don’t mean to offend you but this is what it sounds like:

Hi, I’m Sally Cooper from House, Window and Home Plc and today I’m going to talk to you about something extremely boring.

The problem?

That’s exactly what it says on the paper in front of them.


It’s even what the Power Point slide behind you SAYS.

And what you’re doing, you’re telling the audience right there - this one is going to be like all the other boring presentations you’ve seen, so get your phone out now to save time.

And that’s it, you’ve lost them.

You’ve barely started

and you’ve already lost your audience.

If you want their attention, there is one way that never fails to work.

The best way to start a presentation is with a story.

On Tuesday, Ahmed Mahmood’s parents will drive up to Aberdeen from Birmingham.

As refugees to this country, they never imagined the bright future that stands before Ahmed.

But as they drive up, no doubt they’ll be thinking of what’s possible for their son and his future.

They’ve overcome hardship, they’ve sacrificed to make it possible. And Ahmed has worked so hard since he came to Aberdeen.

And on Tuesday when his parents, along with thousands of parents, siblings, friends, spouses will sit watching their graduate getting their diploma, they’ll feel a huge swell of pride.

So for Ahmed, his parents and all those graduate and coming to watch someone graduate,

I want you to help us to make this graduation unique and special and Ahmed, his parents and everyone else attending.

Now isn’t THAT better than saying you’re name and your presentation title?

Mark Westbrook

Speaking Coach


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