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9 Simple Tips For Better Presentations

Posted on: June 1, 2010

9 Simple Tips For Better Presentations

Do you want to make your next presentation more effective? Use these nine simple yet powerful presentation tips and techniques to enjoy better results when you speak before an audience.

Effective public speaking is not talent. It is a set of skills and techniques that are learned, practiced and delivered well. Learn the techniques and start practicing for your next successful presentation now. Don’t wait until you are asked to speak. Be ready.

Practice saying nothing. Not gibberish – nothing, as in silence. It is so powerful. Pause before you start, pause after you said something important and pause when you are done. Just say less and get more comfortable with the silences.

Your audience will mirror you. If you frown – so will they. If you want them to smile – you must smile. Laugh and they will laugh with you. There are no ugly audiences – only ugly speakers.

Show Your Hands
Keep your hands where we can see them. We will trust you more. Hiding your hands behind your back will make us wonder, “What is he hiding back there?” Putting them in your pockets might feel good – but you lose power and can appear too casual. Let your hands hang at your side. As you speak and become involved in your speech you will naturally move them. You will look more natural. You will appear more trustworthy.

Look at Your Audience
Look at the audience – not the screen, the back wall, or your notes. Talk to them – look at them – one at a time. Move your eyes from one to another as though you are having many one-on-one conversations.

Nod Your Head
When you ask the audience to respond to your question show that you respect their response. Pause and look around the audience; nod your head in approval or show your delight with a smile. Remember you asked them a question. Show that you really wanted an answer.

Sometimes your audience will laugh when you do not expect it. Pause and let them enjoy it. Smile and show you also have a sense of humor – even if you are not sure why they are laughing.

Appoint an Assistant
When you speak before a group, always have a helper who can fix the lights, help with handouts, and usher latecomers to their seats. When looking for volunteers don’t waste time waiting for someone to put up their hand. Appoint your volunteers. Always thank them.

Prepare for your Worst Question
Always be prepared to handle your worst question. You know what it is – the one you dread the most. It might be that you are too expensive, too cheap, too old, too new, too far, too near… Imagine how powerful you will appear when it is posed and you can smile and give the answer you rehearsed.

Edit your Words
Don’t offend your audience by using insulting phrases like “obviously” or “everyone knows”. If it is not oblivious to them or if they don’t believe that everyone knows then you have either insulted them or alienated them.

You can use these nine simple presentation tips and techniques to deliver more effective presentations today. It will take some practice but you can do it. Make your next presentation a success by paying more attention to the details.


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June 2010
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