I sometimes hear people say things like this: “I have to do a work presentation and I want to do it on something funny.” Or they ask “are funny things to do presentations on?” It depends on what your goal is.
If this sounds like you my suggestion for you would be to focus on a topic that interests you. Or better yet one that gets you enthusiastic or passionate. When I say passionate I don’t mean with evangelical zeal, I just mean an idea or topic that lights your fire.
Fight the Lack of Inspiration
Sometimes it’s difficult if you’re in a job where you have to give a presentation. I understand that, I’ve had lousy jobs myself and had to do things that weren’t inspiring to me. But there must be SOMETHING that you like about your job, otherwise you wouldn’t be doing it in the first place.
We either come up with our own topic or we have one assigned to us by a manager. I would make sure that the topic interests you and is one that you can talk about rather than one that is out and out funny.
You are using humour to deliver your message rather than the humour being the message itself. If you’re only goal is to do a funny presentation without delivering value or a takeaway message, may I suggest you turn to stand-up instead?
If your topic is assigned to you by someone else, find your enthusiasm in it. If the whole topic doesn’t appeal, look at one aspect of it that appeals.
You might need to conduct a bit of research first. Either use the books that are specific to your industry or get on the internet and search there. If you find ideas coming up again and again from different sources, find out if you can verify their legitimacy and then make a note of them. If you find an idea coming up repeatedly that means that it’s an idea that is viable and works. You’ll need to include it.
Can you add a personal touch to your topic? Is there a personal experience that you’ve had or that you know someone else has had? A story like this can add a nice personal touch to your presentation and make it stand out. It doesn’t have to be a funny story, although that helps, it just has to be interesting.
So you’re not looking for “funny things to do presentations on” you’re looking for a topic that you are enthused about. Then you can work on adding and uncovering the humour. Topic, then enthusiasm and then funny.
You can also find topics that are fairly serious and pull the humour from those. For example, think about the worst job interview you ever had. While not immediately funny, by telling this story to someone else, they might actually find it funny. That can be a real eye-opener for us.
I used the words fairly serious because obviously there are some subjects that you want to avoid in a business environment. You don’t really want to talk about your recent divorce or the death of a loved one. They’re probably not the best topics to do a work presentation on.
Check out this earlier post for additional insights on how to give a funny presentation.