What’s Your Presentation Style?

The big moment in any creative professional’s life: the pitch.

Your chemistry meeting went well. You have a handle on the brand, and they asked for a big idea.

Since then, the team has been slaving away for weeks. After several late nights, endless cups of coffee, arguments, creative differences, brilliant ideas, and a lot of hard work, your masterpiece is finally ready to be unveiled to the world.

It all comes down to this.

Does the way you present your idea reflect the work you put into it?

Be the Best Presenter You Can Be.

Everyone corresponds to a particular presenter type: Storyteller, Counselor, Coach, Teacher, Producer, and Inventor.

We have the strengths and weaknesses of one of these basic types, although we may exhibit some traits of another.

If you can understand your presenter type, your pitch’s success rates will go up. You’ll know your strengths, be able to face your weaknesses, and figure out how to present your work in its best light.

Storytellers, Counselors, Coaches and Teachers.

In our initial findings, fewer than 20% of presenters are Storytellers, Counselors, Coaches and Teachers.

However, they have more natural ability as public speakers, with Coaches and Storytellers making up the majority of senior executives and entrepreneurs.

Because they have “the gift of the gab,” the Coach and Storyteller connect well with and inspire audiences.

The Counselor and Teacher are well-structured and organized in their delivery, but they can become either distant or dry.

Storytellers often ramble and confuse people rather than clarify.

Counselors that don’t allow their personality to shine through feel a little didactic and dry.

Inventors and Producers.

This is the majority of the presenting population, and it includes many creative people.

These are the ones that, according to Jerry Seinfeld, would rather be in the casket than giving the eulogy.

They’re usually the introverts who don’t feel a need to be the center of attention, and don’t seek to have the spotlight on them.

Inventors and producers have a gift for words, but it doesn’t come quickly to them onstage. They may even feel blocked just searching for the right word in a presentation, a scary moment that nobody ever wants to experience during a pitch.

Let PowerPoint Be Your Wingman.

You aren’t alone on the stage, because there’s a cure.

Let PowerPoint be your wingman.

If, like a Counselor, you’re not very engaging, make sure your slides can involve the audience and evoke the right emotions.

In case you’re all over the place like a Storyteller, make sure your deck follows a solid sequence so your audience can easily keep up with you.

Should you be an Inventor who’s a little unsure of your words, let the presentation carry the talk-track for you without making it into a teleprompter.

Knowing these six styles and dealing with their shortcomings will help you become the best presenter you can be.

Want to take part in our research, find out what type of presenter you are, and learn how to improve your presentation style? Head on over and take our quick survey.

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Author Bio

Gavin McMahon is a PowerPoint obsessive. He’s a founding partner at fassforward Consulting Group, and blogs about PowerPoint, communication, infographics and message discipline at makeapowerfulpoint.com. You can tweet him at @powerfulpoint and connect with him on Google+.

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