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To Deliver A Great Presentation, Be Like Yoda

Stashed in: #TED, Star Wars!, Presentations, Business

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One of my favorite lines from your TED talk is, "You’re not Luke Skywalker, you’re Yoda." Could you explain that a bit?

Think about movies and myths. There’s often a likeable hero who encounters obstacles and, in overcoming them, is transformed. That’s Luke Skywalker. When you're presenting, that's not you.

People go up on stage and set themselves up as if they’re the hero. The attitude is, "I'm going to give you this information and it’s going to help you." Or, "I’m going to give you this information and you're going to admire me." That’s an arrogant stance.

In movies and myths, there’s also often the mentor, who comes alongside the hero to help them get unstuck or give them a magical tool. That’s Yoda. When you're presenting, that’s you. If you look at it that way, suddenly you’re more humble.

The presenter's success is completely dependent on the audience adopting the idea. The presenter is not the protagonist. You need to take that and respect that. The audience has the power to take your idea and spread it far and wide. Or it can die.

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