How to Grab and Hold People’s Attention

“Make sure you have finished speaking before your audience has finished listening.”

—Dorothy Sarnoff

I have a recurring nightmare that goes like this: I am in a room giving a presentation. I feel passionately about the topic, and I know that I’ve put together a great presentation. But as the presentation moves along, I start losing control over the group. I notice that a few people aren’t listening to me. They are having their own conversation in the corner of the room. Then the inattention expands. More and more people stop listening and start talking to each other. Eventually I end up shouting over the conversations to try to be heard. People start leaving the room. No one is listening. I wake up suddenly ...

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