Presentation is not just a matter of creating slides and putting forward what you have to say. It's the art of portraying yourself and your expertise in front of an audience, whether that’s investors, potential customers, senior executives or just your coworkers.
Everyone has their own way of presenting. Some may experience panic while standing in front of the audience, which is a consequence of pressure and high expectations. Despite those commonly known hurdles, we can ace presentations by implementing these easy-to-apply tips at any time. Put fear aside, and let’s get started!
Tip #1: Have a solid grip over your subject matter
One of the greatest minds of the 20th century resumed a tip in one core idea: Explain the concept as if you were teaching it to a child. In case you are not familiar with the teachings of Richard Feynman, this technique is broadly applied in academic scenarios and business conferences. By lowering the wordiness of a presentation, you don’t necessarily imply a lack of knowledge, quite the opposite.
Taking concepts and polishing them in more straightforward terms demonstrates you hold a firm grip over the subject you plan to present. You may use different tools to deliver your message, such as visual aids, Org Chart Template, notes, etc.
Tip #2: Enthusiasm is vital
Have you ever been to a big conference and felt sleepy because of its tone? Speakers who don’t spread their passion to the target audience are doomed to be labeled as bad presenters; that’s a legacy you don’t want.
Engage with the public by explaining why this topic matters so much in your life and why they should follow suit. Especially during business presentations, the discussion can become tedious when going over and over metrics or large bulks of data. Instead, opt for a method that can drive attention to details; to bring new life into the discussed item.
Remember your expressions and gestures. Body language is a reflection of what is going on in your mind. You won’t deliver the same impression by hunching over a laptop and clicking for the next slide compared to active engagement with your audience. Make eye contact with the audience, so they know you are interacting with each of them. Don't read off the slides; only use them as a reference. Practice delivering beforehand so that you can present your work with confidence.
Tip #3: Arrive early to overview everything
When one is unfamiliar with the location where they will be presenting their work, they usually fail during implementation. Increase your success rate by arriving at the site early, and double-check the setup. Your laptops, projector, or speaker, don't overlook anything. Yes, lighting matters.
Download or transfer the files to your USB as an extra safety measure. Another method is to email your work or rely on cloud storage services. If the location does not have all the necessary equipment, you may bring your equipment and put it up quickly.
Tip #4: Make use of visual aids
Many studies have proved visuals to aid people in remembering the content presented for much longer. Professionally designed graphic elements can pick the interest of your audience and help deliver the message instantly.
For instance, instead of repeating the names of different department team members, opt for an Org Chart in PowerPoint to clarify which area you dive into.
Don't go overboard with the slides; it will distract people and cause them to lose interest in what you have to say. One to three bullet points per slide is enough unless exposing extra data is vital.
Tip #5: Begin with a bang
Starting with a strong opening will set the tone for the entire presentation. For instance, you could start with a striking stat that makes the audience sit up and pay notice. Or you can use a quote that makes them want to listen attentively.
On the other hand, you may start with a striking image, an intriguing video, or a captivating personal story. That first impression is crucial to making your presentation worthwhile.
Tip #6: Determine the objectives
Right before the outset of your business presentation, make a list of the objectives you want to accomplish while you are on the stage. Print the outline for the presentation as a flyer to deliver to your spectators; it’s also the perfect opportunity to share your contact data or social media profiles.
The audience will feel a sense of satisfaction and significance in verbal interaction, seeing that the previously specified objectives are being met during the presentation. As a bonus, laying out the topics ensures a productive session of Q&As.
Tip #7: The power of storytelling
Academic arguments, statistics, and even quotations fail to elicit the same emotional response from people as tales do. Hence, by sharing your personal experiences, business journeys, and the road into this presentation, you then consider the customers as the subject of the narrative.
For example, you can build up a story in which you can state the clients’ problems as the villain while, on the other hand, you can consider your product as the hero who encounters the problem and fix it. But again, set your limits, and don't forget that the presentation is for the corporate means. Keep it short and relatable. The goal is to establish an emotional connection with your viewers to ensure they remember your message. Don't go too far off the rails or divert from your core point.
Tip #8: Incorporate a hint of humor
Maintaining a light environment throughout the presentation, particularly in business with complex data, is always beneficial to prevent boredom. Incorporating humor into your business presentation and adopting a conversational tone would help persuade your audience.
Remember, since this presentation is for corporate dealing, don't turn it into a stand-up session, or people won’t even consider the quality of your hard work.
Apply these tips not as rules but as suggestions to improve your performance. In the end, your hunch will tell the proper way to set the tone of a presentation and put nervousness aside.
Believe in the quality of the content you wish to share, and always be ready for what question can come up next. Again, rehearsing is the best method to overcome performance anxiety, but don’t fall prey to delivering robotic-styled talks just to express you are not affected by pressure. Take the information provided in this article as a tool for crafting a successful pitch.
About the Author
German Viera is an engineer transformed into an entrepreneur. Currently focusing on business growth, product improvements, design, marketing, and of course support of our valued customers for slidemodel.com | LinkedIn