Wed Workshop: I tell you three times – how to make presentations stick.


Close-up of female hand making notes

Close-up of female hand making notes

This week’s training tip is on how to get your ideas to sink in …

If you wish to get an idea across to an audience, you can do worse than adopt the ‘Tell Them, Tell Them, Tell Them’ mantra.

Lewis Carroll, in ‘Hunting For The Snark’, wrote “What I tell you three times is true.”

Now obviously, simply repeating something doesn’t make it the truth (otherwise the Internet would be an entirely different place) – but what he wrote contains a kernel of wisdom for those who have to make informative presentations.

The Tell, Tell, Tell technique is tried and true –  whether you are teaching a class, or delivering a keynote address to a group of your peers.

The technique is this: Outline to your audience what you are going to tell them, deliver the information in detail, and then remind them of the key points of what you just said.

This has the impact of:

* priming the audience to be receptive,
* giving them the information they need to take away, and
* reinforcing your key points.

Audiences are most likely to remember the first thing you say or do (we make almost instant judgements based on first impressions) and the last thing you say (that’s just how we are wired!)

So if your first and last things point to the middle, where the meat of your information is stored, then you have a much better chance of them remembering it.

Which, you will notice, is exactly what I did with this blog post!

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