Presentation tips for speakers

A Bright Ideas talk is a short seven (7) minute presentation. It should focus on how the speaker identified a problem or opportunity, came up with an innovative or inspiring Bright Idea to address it, and put that idea into action.

Messages should must be short and sharp, as the audience will only remain engaged for a short time. The presentation should also:
• Reflect on key challenges experienced along the way and how these were overcome.
• Explain the results and impact of the Bright Idea, and who was affected.
• Identify what could help the Bright Idea become even more successful and achieve wider transformational change.

Your presentation should be a clear, easy-to-follow narrative about your Bright Idea. The following structure will asist you to repeat and reinforce key points throughout your talk. Repeating yourself isn’t necessarily a taboo in public speaking as you want your audience to remember some key messages.

1. Introduce yourself

2. Explain the problem or opportunity

3. Describe your Bright Idea

4. How did you put it into action?

5. Challenges overcome

6. Impact achieved

7. What’s next?

Top tips for a Bright Ideas presentation

1. Take your audience on a journey.
Use the easy-to-follow structure above to share your own story of your Bright Idea. Be emotive and passionate, but remember to tell the whole story – the failures in life often teach us more than the successes.

2. Have a consistent look and feel.
If you follow the guidance in the Bright Ideas PowerPoint template available online, you can’t go wrong.

3. Do not overload any presentation slides.
Less is more – particularly with respect to the amount of text you have on each slide. Show more pictures and use less text. No more than three lines of text per slide. Avoid using effects and transitions where possible, as too many can look unprofessional.

4. Do not sell yourself or your organisation.
You should focus on ensuring the audience will benefit from what you say. When you inspire with your actions, and help people improve their professional or personal lives, you’ve done all the selling you’ll need to do.

5. Watch your body language.
Do not read notes if you can avoid it, and make eye contact with the audience. Gestures can help emphasise or convey a message, but repetitive gestures can be distracting. Try to vary your gestures, but let them come in a natural way.

6. Speak slowly and clearly.
Your voice is a powerful tool. Find the right volume and tone, emphasise important words and articulate your words and ideas clearly. If you are talking about a complex idea, break it down into simpler concepts or relate it to a story. If you do this, people will understand you and naturally follow what you are saying.

7. Talk like a thought leader.
Great speakers are thought leaders who teach their audiences something about the world. Be confident, and inspire confidence in your audience.

8. Practise, then practise again.
It’s normal to be nervous, but remember the audience likes you and wants to hear about your idea. Practice builds confidence in your speaking ability.

9. Be yourself and have fun.
Your Bright Idea is your product, your idea and your story; nobody in the world is better placed to tell it than you.