“Wow! This is really awesome”? I can raise my hand to that. But I have also attended many presentations that are so boring that I wished I’d left the room. How can a CEO give such a terrible presentation? How can anyone give a terrible presentation? That’s the question I often ask myself. Your goal as a CEO should be to enter the stage, rock it and create a great, everlasting impression of you and your company.
I have traveled a lot around Norway and the world doing presentations on my experience of starting a company at a young age and how to better recruit, lead and sell to Millennials and Gen Z. Shared the spotlight with the co-founder of Skype and Dex Carrington from MTV and other amazing people who are just insanely great on stage. Right now I am traveling around the world giving presentations about the Gen Z and Millennial generations and can’t wait for you to check out these three advice on how to become better on stage.
I wish to share my strategy before entering the stage:
1. Practice, practice and even more practice
Think of one of the best athletes achieving a gold medal, such as the Norwegian ski master, Petter Northug. How much practice lies before that winning race? I’d estimate a couple of thousand hours, every day, every week and every month for years. It’s the same recipe for performing a good presentation. Without practice, you’ll not do your best. My goal is always to own the stage, make the best show, and most importantly to be remembered after leaving. To do so requires a lot of practice. My fiance sometimes thinks that I’ve gone crazy when she hears me talking to myself and laughing at my own jokes alone in the home office for hours, but that’s just me practicing for my next presentation. You just can’t practice enough.
2. Make every slide count
I have some simple rules for slides: no bullet points, only font sizes over 60, and that every single slide must count. Once I’ve made a Canva presentation, I read over each slide and ask myself, “Is this appealing and meaningful? Will people get a wow-feeling?” If not, I’ll make improvements until I am completely satisfied. Every now and then a slide just doesn’t work out. The only solution: hit delete. Make every slide count.
(I create all my slides in Canva )
3. Take responsibilities for a flawless presentation
It is very amateurish when something goes wrong during a presentation. It could be a video that’s in the wrong format; a slide that’s half off the screen; or simply that the Powerpoint won’t open. It can be easy to blame the hosts of the event, but in the end, putting the blame on others never improves the audience’s impression of you and your company. Therefore, before every presentation, I make sure that everything works. From the sound and videos, to small details such as the light settings in the room. Knowing that everything will go perfectly gives you that extra boost, and you’ll feel ready to rock the stage. I like to come some hours before or even some days before and just stand on the stage and get the feeling of the room. It helps me a lot!
4. Have fun!
Like many other big speakers, I will admit that I am a bit nervous beforehand. My trick here is to tell myself that I will have so much fun on stage that I’ll completely forget about being nervous. Really, think about it, you are going to be on the stage for about 10-30 minutes? Why not have fun? As a CEO, I know that during every presentation lies a possibility that someone in the audience could be a potential future colleague or an investor. I want to give them the impression of ClickLift as a fun company to work with, that has a CEO boosting with positive energy.