Taking the Stage? Craft a Compelling Conclusion!

Recently, I have seen some highly-credentialed and competent business speakers, with great topics, who were well prepared. However, I was disappointed in their presentation wrap-up.

They actually had no wrap-up. Tossing off a quick “my-time-is-up- thank-you-for-having-me” to the audience, is not the best way to leave your audiences wanting more of you, wishing to hire you or motivated to buy your products or services.

Here are 10 quick tips to provide a great conclusion for your talk. You may wish to incorporate several of these in your next presentation conclusion.

1. Tie in your concluding remarks with your “Hook Them Opening”.
2. Decide whether you want to leave your audience with an inspiration, a call to action, a quote, a motivational thought, a challenge. (Note: You will know this when identifying the purpose of your talk or the outcome you wish your audience to have, whilst outlining your initial preparation.)
3. Be cautious about dropping your vocal pitch unless it is to enhance Point 2 above.
4. In most cases, it would be advantageous to leave your audience on a positive, uplifting note. Even when I have seen former POWs speak, the pathos of their powerful stories is incredibly touching, but they still have made their audiences laugh, even through the tears.
5. If the purpose of your talk is to promote your business, your book, a product or service, do not sound too “salesy” at the end of your presentation. If you wish to offer a give-away, you may wish to carefully consider when best to do this, for maximum impact and to avoid losing your audience’s attention.
6. If you wish to appear powerful during your concluding remarks, go front and center stage.
7. Be sure to always use excellent eye contact from left to right, front and rear, especially during the wrap-up.
8. Keep your energy high! If appropriate, use music to accompany your entrance on stage and departure off stage.
9. Have warm, gracious, heart-felt comments to impart beyond the simple words of Thank You and accompany these with a genuine smile!
10. Mention the name of the city, organization, company or group, your host, their charity, anything to personalize your appearance with them, which is appealing and memorable.

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