If you have to give technical presentations in your career, one of the most difficult challenges is to deliver the technical presentation to a non-technical audience. Doug Staneart offers a few tips that will help. These presentation skills also help non-technical people deliver better technical presentations as well.
Designing a Technical Presentation for a Non-Technical Audience
On this episode of the Fearless Presentations ® Podcast, Doug covers how to design a technical presentation that is to be delivered to a non-technical audience. Doug begins by reviewing details from Podcast 3, How to Design a Speech. In this review, he talks about how presentations range from speeches for entertainment or emotional purposes all the way out to the lecture or briefing. He talks about how the technical presentation is on the far end of the spectrum close to a lecture, so the presentation should have as many as five main bullet points and a few examples to reinforce those bullet points. Below are a list of the tips from the podcast.
- Limit Your Content to Five Bullet Points: The more technical the presentation, the more likely your audience will be confused. Because of this, you’ll want to limit your content to just the absolute most important items that this audience needs to know about this topic — tight now. If you get additional speeches, you can cover more content in a different sitting (or after a break).
- Make Your Bullets Conclusions for Your Audience (Not Data): One of the biggest mistakes that technical presenters make is that they believe that their audience is most interested in the data. The opposite is often true. The audience wants you, the expert, to explain to them what the data means. This lets you show your expertise. It also helps the audience make better decisions based on your data.
- Offer Your Data to the Audience by Referencing Real-Examples of How Your Conclusions are True: Once you have your presentation organized into a series of easy to follow conclusions based on your data. Use examples or real-life stories to explain the data. For instance, if you have a software update, explain to your audience what was happening before the update and how the update will fix the problem versus just reciting a bullet point about what the technical changes was.
We cover these and dozens of additional public speaking tips in the 2-day Fearless Presentations ®: class held in dozens of cities around the world every couple of months.
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