Zzzzzz … Start your presentation like you mean it. Openings are prime time. Use yours to connect, spark interest, elicit emotion, and attract attention. Don’t waste it on clichés and platitudes.


There are lots of options. Depending on the group, the setting, your objective, and your style, you might:

  1. Explode with energy and enthusiasm. 
  2. Say something significant or momentous.
  3. Draw them in by standing silent, calm, and confident.
  4. Ask a compelling question.
  5. Issue a challenge.
  6. Confuse them just enough to provoke curiosity.
  7. Tell a story that makes a powerful and relevant point.

Ideally, your opener will create a ‘curiosity gap’: a void between what they already know and what your opener makes them eager to know. Whatever you do, make your opener a good one. Bore them at the beginning and good luck getting them back.

Learn the secret to explosive starts and more.

Join me at the next edition of  The Speaking Intensive.

Presenters from United Technologies, Mass Mutual & MFS and 40 other firms already have. Now it’s your turn.

Alan Parisse

Hall of Fame speaker Alan Parisse has been coaching presenters and delivering keynotes for over 25 years. Named “One of the Top 21 Speakers for the 21st Century” by Successful Meetings Magazine, he is a keynote speaker for a wide variety of industries and organizations. Alan is a passionate presentation coach to executives, financial advisors, sports stars and sales presenters.