One of the axioms about great presentation skills is to “make it sticky”
Sounds good, but how? Here are four of tried-and-true strategies (the “application” part is how I say it – you can adapt to your style!).
1. Get people talking
People remember most of what they say, versus what the presenter says
Application: “Take 3 minutes, turn to the person next to you and share one thing that stands out so far”
2. Evoke disagreement
Critical analysis often means criticism – ideas don’t stick if a person hasn’t had a chance to integrate within existing knowledge, assumptions, worldview
Application: “Write down one concern, question or skeptical comment or idea about what I’ve been saying”
3. Initiate a “Teach Back”
No matter how much knowledge/skills/expertise I might have started with, anything I’ve ever had to teach forced me to learn more deeply.
Application: “Find someone you haven’t spoken to yet and teach them ___ (concept, skill, approach, etc.)
4. Bridge the Gap
Don’t be afraid to assign homework.
Application: “Before you go to sleep tonight, write down three things that you are going to practice or do differently based on the work we’ve done here today…and put them on your computer screen/refrigerator/other.”
Last week I was asked to facilitate a workshop for a diverse group of community health and counselling providers. The organizers asked for an outline of the proposed session as well as an overview of a subsequent follow-up session to help ensure uptake and implementation. In other words, why invest in staff training if there’s no traction over the longer term?
The research/education/practice gap is undeniably tough to bridge, and follow-up coaching and training certainly helps increase adoption and skill development. But in my mind, every presentation is an important opportunity to foster motivation for change – with or without follow-up.