Do you get respect when giving a business presentation? Or do people pass over what you have to say…so your ideas never see the light of day?

Many young managers struggle with how to get respect. More experienced professionals have a tendency to judge younger managers—assuming they lack life experience and insight.

But here’s the thing: you have great ideas. You have fresh eyes. You’re seeing opportunities where others see problems. Since you want others to listen to your ideas, respect you and trust your leadership…build your presentation skills.

To win respect, use these top ten tips. While you are more than likely doing one or more of them…pay extra attention to doing them well, and doing them all.

1. Ask questions to win a “Yes!”
Quick story here. A person goes to a psychic. The psychic asks: “Are you having relationship problems? Are you having money problems?”
Just about everyone is going to say, “yes!”

When you’re asking questions, aim for the same kind of question. The question that inspires a ‘yes’ answer. Such as: “Do you want to increase business? Do you want to cut costs?”

Just about everyone is going to say, “yes!”

2. Focus on core emotions
Core emotions are human emotions. Search for freedom. Seeking higher performance. Yearning for security. Focus on the human emotions that your audience is feeling. This instantly builds connection.

3. Build your presentation—strategically
Every presentation needs a strategy. The best time to think of your story strategy is when you’re building your presentation. Strategy is the architecture that creates great results.

Just as you wouldn’t build a skyscraper without a blueprint, don’t build your presentation without a strategic plan.

4. Use a storyboard to prepare
While some ‘architects’ do sketches and go directly to an engineer…most use a blueprint. In presenting, this blueprint is called a storyboard. A storyboard is a fast way to organize your ideas, plan your story flow, and make important decisions about media.

Plus, if you’re working with other people to create a presentation, a storyboard is the ideal communication tool. Use it when talking with writers, designers or production team. (If you’re creating your presentation solo, you’ll play all the roles.)

5. Make your point—visually
Humans are visual thinkers. The human brain is wired for visuals…so your presentation should be as well. Use pictures, photos, and video to emphasize your point. Draw a sketch at the whiteboard to simplify complex concepts.

6. Give people a chance to talk
One-directional presenting is boring and monotone. Interactive presenting is engaging, energetic and highly productive. Make a personal commitment to give people a chance to talk. This seems like it is ‘cutting in’ to your time. But it’s not.

By letting people talk, you show that you’re interested in collaborating.

7. Listen and leverage
Listen to input and guide the conversation. Leverage ideas by showing how participant feedback builds a stronger solution. Focus on facilitation skills to keep your presentation clear and on track.

8. Share relevant personal examples
Sharing personal stories builds rapport—if they are extremely relevant. Practice building up a storehouse of relevant personal examples to illustrate key points that come up frequently in your presentations.

Most expert speakers have many ways to illustrate key concepts with personal stories. Start to build your treasure trove so you’ll always be ready with a terrific personal example.

9. Focus on specific, timely actions
Always think in terms of action. Tie ideas to desired outcomes. Make these specific, timely and measurable. For instance, “Friday at 3pm” is more powerful than, “sometime next week.”

10. Cut your time in half
Aim to give brief, concise and focused presentations. If you give shorter presentations than expected, no problem. This allows time for question and answer sessions, suggestions and feedback.

It’s amazing how quickly you can build your presentation skills and transform how people listen to you. Use these 10 tips to get the respect you deserve.

Author's Bio: 

Milly Sonneman is a recognized expert in visual language. She is the co-director of Presentation Storyboarding, a leading presentation training firm, and author of the popular guides: Beyond Words and Rainmaker Stories available on Amazon. Milly helps business professionals give winning presentations, through Email Marketing skills trainings at Presentation Storyboarding. You can find out more about our courses or contact Milly through our website at: