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    Clean Humor: A Must-Have Element in any Presentation

    Updated on: Apr 30th, 2012
    Presentations
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    Ann K. Emery of Depict Data Studio sitting at a computer and speaking into the webcam.

    I’ve been asking evaluators and non-evaluators to reflect upon great presentations. How can you make sure your message really sticks with the audience? These conversations will inform the American Evaluation Association’s new Potent Presentations Initiative (P2I).

    I recently chatted with my dad to find out what impresses him most during conference presentations. During his 25+ years as an economist for the federal government, he’s watched his fair share of good and bad conference sessions. Here are my dad’s must-have elements to include in a conference presentation:

    • Clean humor (preferably somewhat related to presentation, audience, or current events), including self-effacing humor
    • Personalize with the audience
    • Allow questions as you go and be flexible but not too flexible
    • Know your audience’s needs and general knowledge level (beforehand)
    • Be accessible afterwards
    • Know beforehand what you can and cannot say regarding the group (agency, company) you are representing

    What must-haves would you add to this list?

    More about Ann K. Emery
    Ann K. Emery is a sought-after speaker who is determined to get your data out of spreadsheets and into stakeholders’ hands. Each year, she leads more than 100 workshops, webinars, and keynotes for thousands of people around the globe. Her design consultancy also overhauls graphs, publications, and slideshows with the goal of making technical information easier to understand for non-technical audiences.

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