Superior Presentations 68: Move From Left to Right

Move from Left to Right

 
English and other languages originating from Europe read left to right. That means that these people naturally move their eyes from left to right when reading.

They prefer to absorb information in the same manner.

When you speak before an audience you can use that principle to enhance the acceptance of your message.

First you must realize that it's the audience's perception of left to right and not your on-stage left to right that counts. It's not what you thought you said. It's what they thought you said that is important.

How can you use this principle in your presentation?

Timeline

If you asked these people to draw a timeline of a project they will likely draw it from left to right. The left represents the beginning while the right represents the end or the future.

Here's how you can move while talking about your project or proposal. Talk about the past while standing on the extreme left side of the stage (your right). Stand in the middle of the stage when talking about the present and move to the far right of the audience when describing the desired future.

Instead of walking around you could also simply gesture to your right when talking about the past and to your left when talking about the future. Another variation is to make a quarter turn to your right to talk about the past and a quarter turn to your left to talk about the future or goal.

Objections and Obstacles

You can use the same methods to place problems in the past and solutions in the future. When you acknowledge an obstacle or an audience member raises an objection place them in the past - your right.

Place the strengths, benefits and desired outcomes of your idea or product in the future - your left.

Practice

You are reversing your movements for the benefit of your audience. This is not natural so you will need to rehearse these movements. The benefit to you is that they will be more willing to accept your ideas when they can SEE the progress.

Remember to also look in the direction in which you are gesturing to complete the picture. If you do this well the eyes of the audience will move in the direction you intended. That leverages the internal programming of the brain associated with left to right eye movement.

 
Of course when you present in the Middle East you will need to reverse everything above because they read from right to left.

George Torok

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