PERSUASIVE PRESENTING BLOG

The BEM Principle- Ignore it at Your Peril!

Posted on Jul 22

What is The BEM Principle?

and how can you use it to make a bigger impact as a leader in your business?

The BEM Principle is something that soap operas and news programmes use to great effect.

It increases the impact and makes it easier to remember how the episode begins and ends.

We tend to remember how things begin and end and often are a bit fuzzy about the bit in the middle and it all comes down to The BEM Principle.

So what has that got to do with presentations and meetings?

What you do, or don’t do, at the beginning and ending of your “presentation” or meeting can have a significant effect on its success. It’s what you will be remembered for!

The success you have as a leader comes down to your ability to communicate effectively and ignoring this principle will limit your effectiveness. When you do use it you will stand out from the rest and increase your ability to influence because most people in business don’t know about it.

What does BEM stand for?

BEM stands for:

Beginning

End

Middle

So why are the beginning and ending so important?

What most people don’t realize is that when information is presented it is remembered in the BEM sequence. We tend to recall more information from the beginning and end of a meeting, conversation or presentation than in the middle.

In other words the audience remembers the beginning of your “presentation” more than the end, which is remembered better than the middle. This also applies to written submissions too.

Research suggests that this is because of an attentional bias which exists at the beginning and end. The novelty factor at the beginning and the emotional release of the ending cause chemical changes in the brain which “tag” the information and make it more memorable.

This also applies to the order of presentations. If a number of presentations are delivered by different companies, as happens in an interview situation, and they are all of a similar content and style, those that come first and last are remembered better than those presented in the middle.

Now you probably have no control over the order in which you are interviewed but you can control how memorable your presentation is by making it outstanding and irresistible and it has to stand out from the others if you want it to be remembered and increase your chances of winning.

So how can you make sure that your presentation stands out?

Start and end your presentation or meeting with a “bang” rather than a “whimper” (not necessarily literally!) by making the beginning and ending of your presentation more memorable.

In my next post I’ll outline 10 ways that you can use The BEM Principle to make that difference.

Until next time,

Kind regards,

Cath

If you want more tips on how to become outstanding at presenting check out my  book


“Presenting Secrets: 104 & 1/2 Quick Tips Guaranteed to Transform Your Presenting” here

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