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Great Presentations include a BACKSTORY . . .

It’s All About the Backstory.

You have a story, don’t you?

Rarely, when asking this to students, seminar attendees, and clients, do I not immediately see a twinkle in their eye. That non-verbal communication is saying things like:

  1. If you only knew! or

  2. Absolutely, and I need to write a book. and sometimes

  3. Story? I’ve got a million.

Example: We’ve done some traveling and when given the option at meals to sit with people we don’t know, my wife is great at getting people to tell stories. She simply asks, “How did you two meet?”

The responses are wonderful. “I’m a mechanic and she was the barmaid at the pub I frequented after work many days”

Another: “We each were widowed and met at a support group for people who lost a spouse or partner.”

One story stands out. There was a couple who wore the same T-shirts every day of the cruise, like kids dating in high school. The gentleman, a big, burly white guy was in his sixty’s and had been married two or three times. He was in his second career, nursing. Previously, he’d been a carpenter. His wife, a gentile black woman in her early seventy’s was a physician and this was his first marriage. The backstory: They met on

Stories, specifically personal stories, are used to demonstrate, clarify, and emphasize points in your presentation. Everyone has them.

Stories about:

  1. Overcoming obstacles.

  2. Physical, mental, or social ones.

  3. Who helped you?

  4. Who stood in your way?

  5. Failures in

  6. Education, business, or a personal one.

  7. What happened and what was the outcome?

  8. Successes in a

  9. Job, organization, or a family.

  10. Trips

  11. Why did you choose to go there at that time and with those people?

  12. Are you glad you chose that destination and do you recommend it to others?

  13. A picture, vase, or sculpture in your home.

  14. Where did you purchase it?

  15. Who are others in the picture?

  16. Who was with you?

  17. Why did you pick this and not a different one?

When audiences hear stories they go into the hard drives of their brain looking for similar events in their life. Often, they’ll realize they are not the only one with challenges, some tougher than theirs. Hearing those tales of surviving and thriving gives them impetus to move forward with renewed expectations.

Use personal backstories in your presentations and I guarantee they will be absolutely, positively – NO SWEAT!

Question: What’s Your Story?


Three ways to keep the attention of your audience.

About the Author Fred E. Miller is a speaker, an international coach, and the author of the books, “NO SWEAT Public Speaking!” and “NO SWEAT Elevator Speech!”

Businesses, Individuals, and Organizations hire him because they want to improve their Networking, Public Speaking, and Presentation Skills.

They do this because they know: Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.

They also know: We perceive really great speakers to be Experts. We like to work with Experts.

He shows them how to: Develop, Practice, and Deliver Fantastic Presentations! with – NO SWEAT!



  1. Lessening The Fear of Public Speaking with – NO SWEAT!

  2. Crafting Your Elevator Speech, Floor by Floor with – NO SWEAT!

  3. Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.

  4. We are All Self-Employed!

Subscribe to my YouTube ChannelPodcast Channel, and connect with me on LinkedIn and Facebook.

My books can be purchased on NO SWEAT Public Speaking” NO SWEAT Elevator Speech!”

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