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Use This Big Idea To Help Others Remember What You Say

There are two truths that a presenter must embrace about their audience:


1. On the whole we are not good listeners.

2. When we listen, our retention is poor.

This can frustrate the presenter. If you are speaking to people who are unskilled at listening and poor at retaining, why are you speaking? And yet, as the presenter you embrace this challenge, because your ideas and research are important.


In spite of speaking to groups peppered with immature listeners, effective communicators speak in a way that causes the audience to listen and remember.


How is this done?


Quite simply, these presenters structure their content around one BIG IDEA. Regardless of what is said or how many sub-points are offered, like the eight (or is it nine?) planets rotating around our sun, all of the ideas presented rotate around one memorable, pithy concept.


The key here is to present a simple idea the audience can hear and retain, without being simplistic or minimizing the complexity of your topic.


We remember "I have a dream." It is easy to retain. It is simple, yet not simplistic. So when we hear this simple idea our minds are drawn to the rest of Dr. Martin Luther King's content, the complexity of the issues, and beautiful future he calls us to.


To find your BIG IDEA ask two questions:


1. What idea connects everything I want to say?

2. How can I say this in a memorable way?


Use this as a model of effective communication and you will be pleasantly surprised not only at how much your audience listens, but also how much they retain.

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