You think hard about that perfect opening sentence that encapsulates it all: what the company is about, what you sell, what customer problem you solve, when you were founded. You write it down, change it, discuss it with your team, edit it, and memorize it by heart.

Then you use it for a live audience: all key messages stashed in just 10 seconds of beautiful prose. All your audience has to do is register this, and they can basically skip the presentation. All that has to be said, has been said.

But hey, it did not stick?

While you were uttering your first sentence, the audience was looking at the woman in the picture of your opening slide (I want a jacket like that), trying to figure our your accent (Canada?), wondering when the next coffee break would be (11:15 on the agenda, but we are behind schedule). In short, all but pay attention to that perfect sentence.

Gear up your story slowly and give the audience time to familiarize themselves.

Image credit Markus Bollingmo.

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