Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 81) – Garr Reynolds

Garr Reynolds – American Presentation Expert and Author of “Presentation Zen”

“Professional entertainers know that you want to end on a high note and leave the audience yearning for just a bit more from you. We want to leave our audiences satisfied (motivated, inspired, more knowledgeable, etc.), but not feeling that they could have done with just a little less. We can apply this spirit to the length and amount of material we put into a presentation as well. Give them high quality—the highest you can—but do not give them so much quantity that you leave them with their heads spinning and their guts aching.”

— Garr Reynolds


About John Zimmer

International speaker, presentation skills expert, lawyer, improv performer
This entry was posted in Quotes for Public Speakers and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Quotes for Public Speakers (No. 81) – Garr Reynolds

  1. Remember the Law of Primacy & Recency. Have a Strong Opening and a Strong Closing.

    The last thing you say will be the first thing the audience will remember. This is one reason not to take questions after your Closing. The Closing is the Closing. (That’s why the call it that!)

    Garr’s point about quality vs. quantity is well taken. Less is more. Keep your presentation clean and simple.


    • John Zimmer says:

      Thanks, Fred. While I agree that ending with a memorable closing is desirable, I think that if an audience has questions, then, time permitting, a speaker should field them. I always say that any speech, any presentation, is about the audience – first, last, always. Questions come about for many reasons: maybe the speaker was unclear on a point: maybe the audience wants more information on a point; maybe the audience disagree with a point. Each of these reasons is valid and I think that a speaker who doesn’t take questions risks damaging his credibility. Having said that, one technique to address your legitimate concern is to stop at a convenient point before the closing, field questions and then resume for another few minutes to make your final (and memorable) remarks.


  2. renate Mousseux says:

    I agree with the quality of presentation to be just short enough to keep the interest of a group 100 % focused.
    As a Body Language expert, I am able to read when people drift off, and I change tactics for my presentations.

    Renate Mousseux M.A. ED

    • John Zimmer says:

      Thanks for the comment, Renate. Being able to read your audience and make necessary adjustments “on the fly” is an important skill to have.


  3. Jack Vincent says:

    Interesting that I often say this to clients about early in the sales process. Don’t over-explain your offer up front. Just enough to leave them wanting more, if they indeed have a need/desire for what you’re offering, and to move the conversation away from you and toward their needs … the big point, leaving them wanting more is better than burying them in bull-oney.

    Thanks again for a great post, John!

    • John Zimmer says:

      Thanks for the comment, Jack, and for the inside perspective from a sales point of view. Posts like this one are easy to write — I just have to copy and attribute!


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.