So you have survived the introduction and body of your presentation. Your introduction captured the audience’s attention and announced your purpose. The body provided the most relevant information, persuasion and/or motivation possible in the time allotted. Now you ask “Any questions?” with the hope there aren’t any and you can sit down. Right? Wrong! The truth is every movie needs an effective ending, and so does a presentation. What comprises an effective conclusion?
- We’re believers in taking a pause and then saying “In conclusion.” This relaxes you and the audience. (“It’s almost over, folks.”).
- With all the points you made over the minutes (or longer) you’ve spoken, many key issues have been discussed. How can you sum it up in a way that resonates and emphasizes the most important issues? It takes thought and creativity.
- Hopefully, you have motivated your audience to take the action you proposed. Now you need a slogan, an alliterative call for action, or a “vision” delivered with strength and guarantees your audience is galvanized to make the right next moves.
Your stage departure is as important as your wording. Although you’ve been working with key words/phrases during the body of the presentation, it is imperative to enter and leave the stage with strength.
- Script a short but powerful two to three sentences that guarantee your presentation will be memorable. Then deliver them with strength and conviction.
- Make sure the font of the conclusion text is big enough and you’re familiar enough to “sell it” without stumbling.
So, in conclusion, a good close can make a presentation that didn’t work as well as you had hoped seem better. It can also turn a “home run” presentation into a “grand slam” that will earn you strong applause when it’s over. Who doesn’t want that?
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Communications Cues, Presentations, Public Speaking, Speech Phobia