Voice & Speech Newsletter

Engaging Presentation

Creating an Experience

If you think a speaker’s primary task is to say the right words, in the proper order, without making too many mistakes, it’s likely you give boring presentations. I understand how easy it is to fall prey to this assumption. After all, language is a large part of presentation, and that involves words. But on their own, words are just symbols and combinations of sounds, with no power to move your listeners.

I see this in my coaching practice, all the time. If you’re just saying the words, delivering the information, nothing’s happening. It’s dull. You’re not invested in your message. Your listeners aren’t engaged. You sense it, and just want to get through it. Your audience politely endures it. Nothing changes when it’s over, and yet another opportunity is wasted.

Know this. Good communication is never just about the words. It’s an experience. Great speakers create an experience for their listeners. They feel it for themselves, in the moment of communication, and invite their audience to share that experience. It’s more than words; you have to feel something. Here’s how you do that.

Make the message real. Chip and Dan Heath, authors of the bestselling book, Made to Stick, have this to say about presentation. “The #1 mistake we’ve observed in presentations—and there is no close second—is that the message is too abstract.” There’s too much information and not enough examples. Build your presentation around stories, demonstrations and images to help your listeners experience what you’re talking about.

Recommended Video


To create a memorable experience for your listeners, you must learn to feel and express enthusiasm. Jay shares a personal story about the power of enthusiasm and suggests ways to leverage this quality to engage and inspire your listeners.

Special Offer


Online Review Session

Volunteers Needed

Jay needs 5 volunteers and 3 alternates to test the feasibility of online group training. We’ll start with a single review session lasting 60-90 minutes. Candidates must have completed the self-training program, Your Confident Voice, must be available at 11:00 am, Toronto time, and have access to a reliable high-speed internet connection. Contact Jay if you’d like to participate.


Pay attention to the words. Look at what you’re saying. Be aware of the significant words in each sentence. Know why you’re using those particular words. If they’re important, make sure you deliver them in a way that does justice to their meaning. Don’t just say the word. Experience it.


Voice & Speech

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