Giving a presentation? Here’s some top tips….
At St Austell Conference Centre, we really care about your conference or event and our team will go above and beyond to ensure everything goes to plan – and with the latest AV technology you can be confident that side of your presentation is in safe hands.
If you’re due to give a presentation, we know it can sometimes be daunting. That’s why we’ve put together a few useful tips to help you out.
Plan what you’re going to say – but don’t script!
The real power in a presentation is the opportunity to connect with your audience – It’s a personal interaction, so make sure it feels that way.
There’s nothing worse than watching someone with their nose stuck in a piece of paper, or staring at a screen. So write yourself some bulletpoints to stay on track.
Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse….
Run through your presentation as many times as possible. Look at your bulletpoints and don’t be afraid to annotate notes as they come to mind. If there’s a lot of annotation then re-type your bulletpoints so that everything is in one easy-to-read format.
Put your bulletpoints onto cue-cards, and make sure the text is nice and big. Use bold to emphasise various elements. Not only with this help with flow, but also means that you’re not just looking at a whole bunch of text.
The slides are for summary – they’re not a script!
Remember, that YOU are the main focus of the presentation – not the slides on the screen. The screen is there to compliment what you’re saying – so make sure you’re not just repeating the words written on the screen verbatim.
However, that being said – if there’s a particular phrase or fact you really want to stick in people’s minds then feel free to reinforce it by verbally repeating what’s on-screen.
Find a “friend in the room”
Standing up in front of a room full of people is daunting. No matter how confident you are or how many times you’ve presented there’s always going to be an element of doubt in the back of your mind.
Why not identify someone in the audience that you can “talk to” during the presentation. This doesn’t involve them talking back, it’s just someone friendly that you can “talk at” every now and then to help reset yourself.
Make sure you pre-warn them though, or you could end up making someone feel very uncomfortable!
As long as you’re not staring at them the whole time, no-one else will even notice. Even better, why not try and recruit a couple of “friends” sat opposite sides of the room? That way it appears you’re “working the room”.
Silence is golden
It’s natural for humans to feel that they have to fill every moment with noise. Especially if you’re nervous and all the focus is on you.
Why not build some short pauses into your presentation. Not only does this help with the flow of your story, but also gives people the opportunity to digest the information. Here’s a tip – got a particular point you want to put emphasis on? Use silence straight after for effect.
Think about your ending
How many times have you watched a presentation which has felt like it’s just fizzled out because the presenter hasn’t really thought through how to end.
A quick summary, a good strong ending. Confidently thank people for listening and remember to smile. This is your last hurrah in the limelight, so make sure you leave people with a positive opinion of you.
But most of all – enjoy it!
Be friendly and enthusiastic and make sure you enjoy it!