Effective Presentation Skills
Your ability to communicate is the single most important factor in your professional tool bag. People who make a difference, who inspire others, who get promoted are usually excellent communicators. They are able to present ideas clearly and convincingly, they are able to lead and excite, they motivate and persuade. Excellence in management is impossible without excellence in communication. The people who have shaped the course of history were all excellent communicators. They could move audiences, win minds and hearts and get people to take action.
The need to communicate is even greater in today's fast-changing workplace where hierarchies are being dismantled and information sharing is becoming the task of the many and no longer the domain of the executives. Of all the ways you communicate (by letter, e-mail, telephone or one-to-one conversations), the one that gives you the greatest chance to make a powerful impact is the presentation.
Key Skills to Giving a Perfect Presentation
Planning Your Presentation
Preparation is fundamental for a successful presentation. Key skills:
- Preparation is vital to a successful presentation.
- Begin with your objectives, not the opening to your presentation.
- Make your objectives specific.
- Create a catchy take-home message.
- Identify the needs of your audience. Brainstorm for ideas.
Constructing Your Message
Select your key points and then create an outline for constructing your message. Key skills:
- Select your key ideas with your objectives in mind.
- Follow a structure for constructing a balanced presentation.
- Writing can clarify your ideas.
- Beware of memorising or reading your script.
- Use notes so you come across as natural, spontaneous and fresh.
- Storyboard notes can be easier to remember.
Open and Close with Impact
How to get the audience's attention and interest right from the start and establish rapport with them. Key skills:
- A good opening is priceless.
- In your opening you must hook your audience, establish rapport and develop credibility.
- Never do anything that undermines your credibility.
- Collect good openings.
- Plan your closing in detail.
- Make your last words the things you want your audience to remember.
Question and Answer Session
You will need to anticipate and be prepared to answer questions from your audience. Key skills:
- Prepare for questions.
- Thinking about your audience's needs and concerns will give you clues to likely questions.
- Never embarrass the questioner.
- Always maintain rapport.
- Answer to the whole group not just the questioner.
- Do your closing after the question and answer session.
Your Style of Delivery
Guidelines for developing your presence and for making an impact on your audience. Key skills:
- You don't get a second chance to make a first impression.
- Confident people stand tall and move purposefully.
- Gesture as you would in an animated conversation.
- Keep eye contact with your audience and they will keep contact with you.
- Speak in a conversational way.
- Dress to aid your credibility.
- Speak from your heart and you will do a lot of things right.
Never be Boring Again
Learn how to ‘wrap' your presentation so you keep your audiences riveted. Key skills:
- To impact on your audience, pay attention to the wrapping for your ideas.
- Add variety to sustain the interest of your audience.
- Powerful messages can be made in thirty-second bites.
- You may have to give people dry information but there is no need to make a dull presentation.
- Use picture words and involve the audience if you don't want to be boring.
- People remember what is first and last in a session.
- Draw the attention of the audience to what you want rather than what you don't want.
- The rule of three will add power to your words.
Which Planet is your Audience from?
The Importance of matching the style of your delivery to the needs of your audience. Key skills:
- Your audience will be made up of different personality types.
- Go-getters will want you to be short, snappy and to the point.
- Carers will want to ‘connect' with you.
- Analyticals will want you to be detailed, structured and precise.
- Socialisers will want you to be entertaining and enthusiastic.
- Take your presenting to the next level by matching your style to the needs of your audience.
Fishing with Chicken Vindaloo?
The secrets of how to sell your message. How to adapt your technique so your ideas are accepted by the four different personality types. Key skills:
- Data and logic don't always persuade.
- Create the need if you don't want to appear pushy.
- Talk about what people will lose if they don't buy.
- You will create resistance by fishing with chicken vindaloo.
- Vary your influencing style to match the different audiences.