Tips for Effective Presentations and for Using Humor To Maintain Audience Attention

Tips for Effective Presentations and for Using Humor To Maintain Audience Attention

Tips for Effective Presentations and for Using Humor To Maintain Audience Attention

To ensure that you are in the right frame of mind and ready to facilitate an adult learning event successfully, make sure that you have your opening remarks memorized. That way you do not have to keep referring to notes or visual aids.

If you plan to tell a joke but are not a regular joke teller, make sure you have practiced it on a few people to see if it is funny to them before using it in training. Otherwise, you may want to think of alternative ways to gain learner attention and start your session with a bang. This is because if your opening remarks do not grab learners and pique their interest in what you are saying at the beginning; you are likely to lose them in the opening minutes of the presentation.

Tips for Using Humor To Maintain Audience Attention

Two other important points to consider related to joke-telling in training:

  1. If you could potentially offend ANYONE in the group because of a joke you plan to tell that relates to race, gender, body type, ability level, or anything else, do not use it.
  2. Keep in mind that humor and sarcasm do not always transcend cultural divides. If learners are from other cultures in which humor is not commonly used in training or in which they have no context for the context of the joke, learners will not “get it” and your intent will be lost. For example, humor related to certain sports, politics, or cultural-related issues may have no meaning to someone from another country. Additionally, because of cultural beliefs, some people view jokes in a learning or work environment as a waste of time and as unprofessional behavior.

For more creative ideas on presenting information professionally in an adult learning environment, a variety of training methods, gaining and maintaining the interest of adult learners, and incorporating creative training strategies into your training, get copies of Training Workshop Essentials: Designing, Developing and Delivering Learning Events That Get Results and The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning.

Creative Flipchart Ideas That Address The Visual Learning Style

Creative Flipchart Ideas That Address The Visual Learning Style

Creative Flipchart Ideas That Address The Visual Learning Style

Adult learning professionals and educators who conduct training sessions are often challenged with discovering ways to attract and hold the attention of their participants. Since the majority of people in any group primarily have a visual learning style preference, using flip charts is a good way to share information with them.

Creative Flipchart Ideas That Address The Visual Learning Style by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Author, and Blogger

I thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to prepare flip charts for a training session or presentation. Even though it can be time-consuming, I can express my personality and ideas on paper. Unlike computer programs where you are limited to the graphic and text images included in the program (unless you are a computer wizard and can create your own stuff), with flipcharts, you can be as creative as you like. You are limited only by your imagination (and the time and resources you have available).

For example, one of the most creative techniques I’ve discovered in a while came from an acquaintance (Linda Wells of Lubbock, Texas). Her idea involves preparing flipchart pages before a scheduled session. She uses large cotton balls to coat a flip chart page with food coloring. She then uses a large cotton tip swab dipped in household chlorine bleach to draw letters and images on the colored paper. In effect, Linda creates a “reverse image” that is truly eye-catching and unique.

To enhance your own flip chart skills, I encourage you to take opportunities to practice whenever possible. Pick a couple of clip art images or characters you like from books, the Internet, or another source. Once you have a few ideas…doodle whenever you have time. This means to draw the images on scraps of paper, restaurant napkins, or wherever you have access to a writing surface. Pretty soon, you’ll be able to replicate the images on your flip chart pages with little effort. And remember, your participants are not art critics (well… most are not).

For additional ideas and strategies on making, and using flipcharts in your training or adult learning events, get copies of The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers and Team Facilitators and The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning.