olympic tight rope walker

Whether it’s your first time out or you’ve been on your feet giving presentations for the past 25 years, everyone wants the same thing. It doesn’t matter if you’re the CEO or the trainee marketer.

‘The Game Changer’

We hear it every week on our presentation skills workshops: “wow, that’s a game changer.”

What they mean is that they have just seen, heard or experienced something that they know they can repeat and will change everything for them. It instantly shifts the status quo while raising their game and the way they are perceived as a presenter.

Today it seems no longer good enough to:

 –   Make great eye contact

 –   Tell a powerful story

 –  Open with impact

 –  Be passionate

 –  Move with presence

 –  Pause

 –   Show stunning slides

 –  Involve the audience

 –  Give them something they’ll always remember

Everyone wants a game changer in the same way that a compulsive dieter want’s the ‘magic pill’. Presenters everywhere are looking for that ‘silver bullet’, the gimmick that changes everything in a heartbeat.

When it comes to finding it, the old saying ‘each to his own’ definitely seems to ring true.

The “B” key

At every workshop we lead we make a point of reminding delegates of an important function that has been around ‘forever’ that we think everyone already knows but we share it anyway just in case some don’t. It’s the magic of the “B” key on your keyboard. When you’re in slide show and you hit the “B” key the screen goes blank. That allows you to bring your audience’s attention directly to you to emphasize a key point, ask a question or open a discussion.

It a very simple and hugely powerful feature and despite the fact that it’s not new, every time we share it two things happen:

1) We very rarely come across anyone who knows about it.

2) Someone in the room always says “wow, that’s a game changer”.

If the “B” key doesn’t quite do it for you that’s understandable, but there’s plenty more that may. It could be when we give you an immensely simple but vastly powerful way to structure your presentation that works every time, no exceptions.







In short this potent acronym guides and reminds you to do the 5 things which will guarantee that you get to the point quickly and connect with your audience.

First you get their attention, then you present an idea, opportunity or problem that’s very relevant to them. Next you deliver your all important message supported by real life examples and then you tell them very clearly what you want them to do. Simple!

The written word doesn’t do it enough justice of course.

It’s best to be coached through it and when it’s done effectively it’s a total ‘game changer’. We’ve seen miracles happen through helping people to use ARMED. It can transform the most experienced professional from a verbose, rambling wreck of a speaker to a highly focused and powerful presenter.

The exciting thing about learning to be a great speaker is that it’s just like any other valuable skill. There is always plenty to learn and it’s changing all of the time. There will always be shortcuts and gimmicks to everything and what may seem simple to one person may represent a significant challenge to another.

Despite my earlier comments, in our experience the best way to becoming a high impact speaker and presenter is to learn exactly what it takes to:

–  Make great eye contact

 –  Tell a powerful story

 –  Open with impact

 –  Be passionate

 –  Move with presence

 –  Pause

 –  Show stunning slides

 –  Involve the audience

 –  Give them something they’ll always remember

When I was a small boy, despite my dad’s expert tuition and incredible patience I didn’t learn to ride my first bike without falling off a few times. When I turned 17 and learned to drive for the first time I didn’t just turn the key in the ignition to find myself whizzing down the motorway. As I grew older I realized that of course there are short cuts to everything, but there really is no ‘magic pill’ or ‘silver bullet’. We really do have to get the basics right first.

What’s your ‘game changer’?

What is it that you’re looking for that will change everything?

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Image: Courtesy of flickr.com