All too often, we watch presentations in which the speaker starts off by telling you who they are and what they are going to talk about. The problem with these intros is that they are boring and much of the audience tunes them out.
If you want to capture people’s attention at the beginning, you need to start strong with something the audience isn’t expecting. Surprise them! Then you have an excellent chance of keeping listeners with you thorough the whole presentation.
Also, the more comfortable you are with those first few sentences, the more it will help you build and maintain your composure during the remainder of your presentation.
Your first goal is to capture your audience’s attention. So if “Today I am going to talk about. . .” is dull, what are better ways to begin? Start with outrageous!
- Begin with a powerful quote – Your audience may not initially know that it is a quote.
- Ask a Rhetorical Question – They will almost always answer it (to themselves), thus they become more engaged.
- Make a startling statement – Use a fact that will surprise them, related to the topic.
- Use Humor – just make sure it is relevant to the situation or topic.
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