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What are presentations for?

You’ve got 30 minutes of exclusive access to an audience. You’re standing in front of a room or zoom full of people who granted you access to their time. What do you do?

Too often, things go wrong in one of two directions.

One, people consider this occasion to be an obligation. It’s part of their job and so they have to somehow get through. But it’s not an obligation. It’s a privilege. It’s the chance to make an impact. To inspire them. To open their eyes. Or make them curious.

It’s a chance to change people’s minds.

Two, people consider this occasion to be an opportunity to take. They put the spotlight on themselves. Tell us how great this is and how awesome that. They want to take our applause, our money, or our approval. But it’t not an opportunity to take. It’s much rather an opportunity to give. To give us insights or advice, a new perspective on a profound issue we’re struggling with. Or something to aspire to. Maybe just a next step that we had somehow overlooked but is so obvious now that we see it.

It’s a chance to build trust.

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