Updated: Jan 26
Class Review: Virtual Presenting
Our April 22nd Virtual Impact class was small, with just 2 students, but the participants were happy – for them it was almost like a private lesson.
There was Natalia, a scientific educator from the Netherlands working in pre-sales and marketing for a nutritional supplements company and Manuel, an IT Coach working for a General Electric subsidiary, dialing in from Switzerland.
Both were there for the same reason: To develop their speaking and presenting skills so that instead of doing the usual online presentation, i.e. just showing and reading their slides like everyone else did they would grab and keep their audience’s attention, open their talk powerfully, deliver their message clearly, and be memorable.
This utilized techniques from the 3rd step of our Impact Presenting program, “Dare to Engage” and applied them to a virtual setting.
In Natalia's case, she was informing customers, through her presentations, of the science of what her company did, to raise awareness and interest. What she discovered was that by asking her audience questions, she could get them thinking and, hopefully, curious to hear more.
What Manuel learned was that when you flash a slide onscreen, everyone will stop listening and read it. And even after they read it, they will re-read it again and again. But when you used the whiteboard function, people have to listen. And when they are listening, that's when the magic happens.
Here are my tips for using the whiteboard function in online meetings:
Keep it simple – Do away with anything elaborate and keep your drawing or text simple enough to demonstrate your key idea. The data and information to support this can be given verbally as you go along.
Use audience engagement – Any information can be written with the whiteboard function, discussed, then erased or adapted accordingly as the presentation continues using input from your audience.
Mouse alternatives – Using a mouse to draw rarely gets great results. If you want to boost free drawing/writing, use a touchscreen or get an inexpensive drawing pad. Typing (annotating) on the whiteboard as you talk can also capture the audience’s attention.
This doesn’t mean slides aren’t still important in virtual presentations, but they should be simple, each containing 1 key message
and the visual necessary to support that key message.
With those key learnings under their belt, Manual and Natalia practiced their presentations for a final time, and reported a lot less anxiety, more clarity, and found it could even be fun giving a presentation!
April 22nd Online Presenting class
Attend our next Virtual Impact course:
If you want to use home-office time to polish your speaking skills, our virtual class can help you become a better speaker and online presenter.
Virtual Impact is a 1/2-day (3.5 hour) practice-oriented class for a small group (max 4 people) held live, online, every month. In just a short time you can make a huge improvement to both your virtual and live stage presence.
While there are many online public speaking classes available, this is not a class where you listen to the instructor telling you to "do this" and "don't do that". Instead, we encourage active participation and give plenty of opportunities to learn by doing.
In just a few hours you will not only learn, but also practice:
An attention-grabbing opening
Simplifying complex information
Engaging your audience, especially virtually[SH4]
Make the most of your virtual presenting software platforms
Using alternatives to just slides, and improving your slides [SH5]
Ending your talk with a call-to-action to inspire audiences toward something new
What to expect after the course?
On completing the course, you'll look forward to opportunities to present your ideas, plans, and updates. And your colleagues, customers, and partners will better appreciate the value you bring to these presentations.
Sign up today! See our open-enrollment course schedule for more info.