Delete This Slide from Your Presentation

You only have a few minutes on stage before the audience will decide to stay with you or tune out and check their phone messages.  So when starting your presentation, don’t waste any time with slides that don’t directly impact your audience in a personal way.  

Unfortunately, most business professionals do the exact opposite when they start their presentation by saying something to the effect of, “before we start, here’s a little bit about me.” And then they click over to the most predictable slide in every presentation. 

The “About Me” Slide

This slide does nothing to engage the audience

It’s usually a bulleted list of accomplishments and everyone does it because they think it helps to build credibility.  And indeed, it may.  But I believe it’s not worth it. Why? Because you run the risk of your audience tuning you out.  After all, your credentials don’t directly impact their way of life. 

So what’s the best way to build your credibility?  Have someone else do it for you!  It’s the job of the person who is introducing you to build you up so the audience anticipates your arrival on the stage.  And you NEVER want to assume that person knows all your credentials and how to introduce you.  That means you will want to provide an introduction for them that lists the professional highlights you think that audience would best resonate with to give you credibility. 

But what if they don’t read it because they want to wing it?

Fine.  Just let it go, get on stage, and win your audience over with your amazing content, not your credentials. 

But what if there isn’t anyone introducing you because it’s your own event?

Then your “About Me” slide is even less important because they already think highly enough about you to decide to attend your event. Your very presence on stage, for most, is sufficient credibility, so just get to your content, and if you really feel you need to provide your credentials to impress them, do it in a story:

“When getting my MBA at Oxford I had the opportunity to…” is going to be more engaging to an audience participant than a slide that says, “Graduate of Oxford, MBA”. So, trash the slide and get to the stories as soon as you can.

If you liked this quick read, please don’t forget to subscribe so you get notified the next time I release a pro-speaking tip! And remember, let’s all try a little harder to be a little better.

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