Proven Presentation Techniques to Engage, Involve, and Inspire Your Audience to Action
Experienced presenters can transform boring monologues into scintillating dialogues by employing Kristin Arnold’s simple, yet powerful presentation techniques.
Drawing from her extensive experience as a nationally recognized speaker and master facilitator, Kristin Arnold’s proven techniques will help you transform any presentation into a powerful, interactive experience.
In this award-winning book, you will learn how to take a collaborative approach to the communication process so that you can connect and converse with the members of any audience. Arnold’s powerful audience-centered “Interactive Insights” cover the spectrum of practical presentation techniques, including:
- Setting an interactive tone before you start.
- Using Twitter/ text messaging to engage your audience.
- Involving audience members with a specific task.
- Personalizing your language for your audience.
- Making eye contact—even with a large audience.
- Taking polls and running Q&As.
- Recovering from humor that falls flat.
- Facilitating conversation.
- Creating accountability for action to occur after your presentation.
Kristin Arnold has the experience, the wit, and 90 plus practical techniques to take your ho-hum presentations to the next level. By incorporating just a few of her tips, you will dramatically improve your ability to engage, involve, and inspire your audiences to action.
Uncover the techniques to engage your audience and transform your presentation today!
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Technique Checksheet – A quick reference guide of all the techniques listed in my book, Boring to Bravo: Proven Presentation Techniques to Engage, Involve, and Inspire Your Audience to Action.
Energy Curves – When infusing your presentation with these techniques, you can use energy curves to see if you are moving the audience from a high-energy, high-impact, or high-intensity technique to a less-intense activity. As you place your “technique cards” along the curves, you will be able to see if the flow makes sense to you.
Technique Cards – Use this template to identify the objective for each segment or “bit” and to help you pick just the right technique that will engage and involve your audience.
Response Cards – When taking a straw poll, print out these cards to quickly assess the audience response. I print “yes/agree” on green card stock, “maybe/undecided” on yellow card stock, and “no/disagree” on red card stock.
Commitment Cards – At the end of your speech, you may want to ask the audience to commit to a specific action. One technique I use is to ask them to complete this commitment card.
Countdown Timer – When on a break, start the countdown timer so all know when you will reconvene. This timer is in PowerPoint format, so you can easily customize it with your own color scheme and photos!
Footprints – Engage the audience even before they step into your room with these colorful footprints! Just print out a bunch of the left and right footprints on a full sheet of clear labels, cut out the footprints and slap them on the floor leading into your room. (Note: Pick a contrasting color so they don’t blend into the floor!)
Inclusive Language Checksheet – Use this checksheet to count the number of times you use inclusive language (personal pronouns and some form of the words “you” and “we”) vs. the times you use the imperial “me” and “I”. If you are truly engaging the audience, you should, at a minimum, be 2:1. Ideally, you should aim for 4:1. Remember, it’s about them, not you!
Presentation Self Assessment – Want to get better? If you really want to improve your presentation skills, go the extra mile and critique yourself using this form – instructions provided!
Presenter Packing List – Here’s a handy-dandy checklist I use to make sure I have packed everything I need!
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Rave Reviews for Boring To Bravo
Kristin Arnold has a wonderful ability to connect with any audience. Her presentations are inspiring, motivational, and educational—all at once. As I read through [her book]—page by page and technique by technique—I was once more overwhelmed by how little I know, and how much is still left to learn about this wonderful business of professional speaking and teaching.
— Brian Tracy Author of “Speak to Win, Focal Point, and Goals!”
To say that this book is packed with powerful ideas is an understatement. Whether you’re a neophyte or professional communicator, “Boring to Bravo” will help you get better. I highly recommend it.
— Mark Sanborn President, Sanborn & Associates
“The author’s qualifications are important for a book on public speaking (where authorial experience in practicing what is being preached is crucial). Arnold’s background as a facilitator and speaker is extensive, capped by her new role as the incoming president of the National Speakers Association. Her focus is on presentations in the workplace, but the fluidly presented and dynamically toned pages soon make it obvious that her techniques and methods can be used by all who are required to give presentations, whether it be in their public or private lives. Her ideas are underscored by the basic premise that a dull, sleep-inducing program is intolerable, not to say detrimental, to the effectiveness of the presentation. How to engage your audience is the key to speaker success, and the author presents a series of increasingly sophisticated techniques to involved the audience, from employing the right tone of voice to breaking the audience out into smaller discussion groups. Hers are not pat responses to the issue of good programming but are well-thought-out, robustly tested, and greatly practical techniques.” — Brad Hooper Book Reviewer, Booklist
I was lucky enough to get my hands on an advanced copy of Kristin Arnold’s book Boring to Bravo and I highly recommend it. This is a book about being a better presenter. It stands out because it is the first book that I have seen that acknowledges the generational change of the audiences and what the consequences of those changes are (like embrace folks twittering in your meeting rather that have them switch off their cell phones.)I have been a public speaker for 15 years, a professional one for over 13, and found this book very useful. I learned several things while reading it, including many things I am doing wrong! Based on the advice in the book, I am going to use some of the techniques at my two talks at VSLive in Redmond next week.The book is a fun read with lots of checklists, sidebars, illustrations, and to do lists. Kristin even quizzes you at the end of each chapter, often using the techniques she demonstrated in the chapter, a brilliant way to reinforce the points! She stresses energy and engagement with the audience and also makes you think of the small things (the side of the stage you walk in on, passive v active voice, using inclusive language, etc) and how they effect the mindset of the audience. If you want to be a more engaging, dynamic speaker, read this book! — Stephen Forte Blogger & Chief Strategy Officer at Telerik
“Boring to Bravo gives all of the tools and techniques that you need to deliver creative, interesting and fun presentations. Whether a professional speaker or novice this book is the key resource that allows a presenter to engage the information and audience in a whole new way.” — Jeannette M. Mills, Senior Vice President, Baltimore Gas & Electric Company
“Boring to Bravo reminds me of the import of the presentations I am preparing, so I am genuine, clear and passionate. Kristin’s techniques have helped me give effective speeches over the years to my non-profit foundations, my business colleagues, US Congressional staffs, White House officials and at the United Nations. Her book is a great resource for straightforward guidance and encouragement to be your best.” — Lance Bush, PhD, Chief Strategic Officer Paragon Space Development Corporation
“Boring to Bravo will lead to alert, attentive, and active audiences who will recall not only what was said, but who said it — the goal of every presentation.” — Duncan C. Smith, Partner Blank Rome LLP
“In this wonderfully comprehensive approach to improving your presentation power, Kristin not only tackles how to avoid classic presentation errors, but also how to make the good better. There’s lot’s of good advice here but especially that in a powerpoint addicted world the reminder that the presenter is the #1 visual not the screen; that in this video culture visuals and metaphors are more powerful than type; and that dialogue rules! Approachable, appropriate and appealing: a very worth while read.” — Alan C. Middleton. PhD., Executive Director Schulich Executive Education Centre (SEEC)
“Wow… Boring to Bravo is amazing. It contains tons of valuable insights, tips tools and techniques to end boring presentations and to start delivering presentations with PUNCH! This is a must read for anyone serious about presenting and wanting to boost their careers, sell more, teach better or simply wanting to have a great impact on their audiences. I HIGHLY recommend this book.” — Michael Podolinsky CSP, President Professional Speaking and Training Institute
“Are people intrigued and impressed when you speak? If you want to know how to command attention and respect when you talk – whether to an audience of one or one hundred — buy this book. It’s packed with ‘I can use that today” tips that will motivate people to want to listen to what you have to say. Read it and reap.” — Sam Horn Award-winning speaker and author of POP! and TONGUE FU! ®
“Today’s audiences are younger, more sophisticated and not content to be “talked at” is an important truism in today’s marketplace. They want an active role in their own learning and the best way to do that is to involve them along the way. In working with Gen X, and especially, the GenYers (millennials), it is critically important to capture and keep their attention.Between their texting, twittering and tweeting, the more we, as speakers and trainers, can actively involve them in the programs, the better will be their participation–and their own learning. Recent brain research suggests that unless we somehow involve our audiences every five to seven minutes, we’re going to lose them. Further, other studies show that the more we are engaged and even move around, this activity produces chemicals in the body that have a positive effect on our thinking. You can clearly move your presentations from “boring to bravo” by learning and using these basic principles. Get them involved! Now then– just “do it! — Ed Scannell, Author Games Trainers Play Series
“Kristin – the world needs to have this information. You MUST publish this NOW.” — Susan RoAne Author of best-seller “How to Work A Room”
“Every executive needs know how to make their presentations more engaging and interactive – and Kristin is chock-full of ideas to make every presenter look like a hero.” — Robert Grabill – CEO Chief Executive Network
“This information is just amazing! Kristin, I use your book all the time!” — Steve Spangler, Celebrity Science Teacher Frequent guest on the Ellen DeGeneres Show
“This book (Boring to Bravo) ROCKS! You’ve put together an easy to read guide to dramatically improving one’s presentations.” — Shane Browning, Director of Training, Associated Materials, Inc.
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