What saves time, lives, and makes you a better presenter?


Answer: Checklists.

It might not sound like much, but a checklist is one of the most simplest tools to drive you to high performance and with that success with your goals this year, whatever they may be, and whatever your role is in the workplace.

The simple reason being, it’s all too easy for us to forget things. Let’s face it, our lives are increasingly becoming more and more complex. As we look to do and take on more responsibilities simultaneously, the chances of us forgetting a step or two become more and more likely. So if you do something with significant complexity, something over and over again, or many things at once, and you want to succeed, use a checklist.

Besides these reasons, here are some other benefits of using a checklist:

  • Saving time. Don’t waste time trying to remember what you’ve forgotten. Put that time to completing what you have to, sooner.
  • Team work. With everything laid out in full, it becomes easier to delegate steps or parts to others.
  • Quality control. If you have to delegate an entire checklist, you can be more confident that the outcome will match your expectations. The guidance and standards provided by a checklist reduces the risk of something getting lost in translation.
  • Organisation. Getting into the habit of creating and using a checklist, trains you to become highly organised. Highly organised people are often perceived as highly professional.
  • Fight procrastination. Defining what we need to do in steps, makes it easier for us to get what we need to do done. And by making progress, we get a sense of self-motivation to accomplish more. It’s a great feeling to cross something of your checklist.

All of these benefits combined, leads to a boost in your productivity and therefore performance.

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Shopping lists, to-do lists, packing for a trip, property inspections, vehicle maintenance, wedding planning, medical procedures are some of the typical uses of checklists, but have you ever thought about using a checklist to become a better presenter?

Despite sounding perhaps a little overwhelming, anyone can become a great presenter, It is not something left to chance or DNA. But there can be a fair number of steps to prepare for and deliver a winning presentation. The good news is that the steps and considerations are more or less the same from one presentation to the next. Whether you are presenting to 1 person for 5 minutes or a stadium filled with people for 60 minutes. Sure, each presentation has it’s unique circumstances, but there’s no reason to reinvent the wheel each time. And that’s where a checklist can be extremely helpful.

So helpful in fact, that I still use one for my own presentations despite having delivered hundreds of presentations. Many years ago my presentation skills checklist was a hardcopy list. At some point I moved this into an electronic format to serve as templates, making for more repeatable presentations. And most recently I’ve decided to jump onto the app bandwagon, and have developed a full flexible app specifically for presentation checklist management. Now my presentation checklists are not only repeatable in electronic format but integrated with my smartphone reminders.

Every step of effective presenting is now in the palm of my hands, both as a reference, and as a tool for tracking progress against the presentations that I give.

If you are not someone that uses checklists, why not give them a go to start the new year? And if you have used them, write a comment to share with others your experience with using them.

Contact me here if you are serious about becoming a better presenter and would like a copy of my presentation app to try out for yourself. I’ve decided to giveaway the app for FREE for the first 20 people who reach out. Please note that the app is only compatible with iOS devices at this time.

Wishing you the very best success in 2016.

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