You have your main presentation but now you need a great ending. How to end my presentation? is a question asked by many of you because the end is the last thing your audience will hear and see. It will be remembered, for good or bad reasons.
After your main presentation you should take questions and leave your ending for after the Q&A session. You do not want your audience to be left without a clear indication that the presentation has ended and you definitely don’t want your presentation to fizzle out in a Q&A session. Take a look at my post on handling questions and feedback.
Once your presentation is over you need to take back control. Let the audience know that you are coming to a close. A statement like ” I would just like to finish this presentation by summarising what we have covered.” works wonders in settling people and letting them know you are nearing the end. This sign posting is important for both the comfort and focus of your audience.
The main message you want to convey at the end is the reason you have done the presentation in the first place. Take a look at my post on structuring your presentation ,where I teach you how to get your audience to think feel and then do what you want them to do.
You need to go over the main points of your presentation. Tell them what you have just told them. And then ask for what you want them to do as a result of your presentation. e.g “I hope that I have given you enough information to implement this new project”
Keep your ending short and to the point. There are dangers that you must avoid to ensure your ending is effective.
False Endings. This may seem obvious but there should only be one ending. I have seen presenters say “and finally” several times because they haven’t planned their ending and then they think of other things to add as they go along. The audience will become irritable and restless if you do this.
Wandering. If you haven’t planned what you are going to say for your ending you will wander and waffle and the ending will never seem to be arriving at all. I have seen presenters who have not had a definitive ending, just stop talking. The audience feels uncomfortable. “Have you finished or not.” Awkward.
Second Speech. Do not finish and then start talking again. If you forgot to say something, tough, leave it alone.
Rushing to the finish line. This often happens when time is limited. It is better to say” I know I have run over a little but I would just like to take a couple of minutes to summarise what we have covered” than to have a wet lettuce of an ending.
As we have said, your ending should be a brief summary of the points covered leading to your final sentence which should leave your audience in no doubt what it is you want them to do, as a result of your presentation.
Your final remark should linger in the mind of your audience.
I hope this has been useful and that you feel better prepared to give your presentation and dare I say enjoy the experience. I would love to hear your stories about presentations and I am here to help with any questions you may have.
Just comment below and I will get back to you as soon as I can.