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10 things to help nail your business presentation delivery

Do you consider
yourself a natural born presenter? There’s no doubt that some of us are and
when we stand up and take the mic, the room falls silent and we have everyone’s
full attention straightaway. When this happens, the audience listens because
they are confident that what is about to follow is going to be the words that
inspire and captivate.

Perhaps, you are more
like Mr Bean when you take the stage and even saying a few words at a wedding
is your idea of hell — slowly turning into a 2002 Marshal Mathers, ‘knees weak,
arms heavy’.

Standing up in front
of a group of people and speaking can require a bit more learning and practice.
Lucky for you, we are here to offer you some helpful advice. Read our top ten
tips to help you grow in confidence and deliver the perfect presentation,
without hearing the tumbleweed blow past.

Seconds count… ensure your audience engages

Imagine you’re robbing
a bank, you aren’t going to take the time to introduce yourself, you need to
grab the attention of the teller and get out of there. A presentation is no
different, get in, and with a piranha-like bite, you attack, ensuring your
audience hones in. Often you are going to be using a digital presentation that
will include your topic title, and they will already know your name. ‘Different’,
in this circumstance, is detrimental.

Don’t overcomplicate your language

It may seem like a
given, but the major failings of most speeches are that the audience simply
cannot understand it. The best speeches in the history of time were delivered
succinctly and weren’t overflowing with jargon. The biggest mistake one can
make is to overcomplicate the language used — it doesn’t simply confuse the
listener, but it will more than likely cause you to trip up as well.

Earn their attention

As much as we might
not like to accept it, no one in life owes us anything — it is up to us to earn
their attention. We cannot expect to warrant someone’s appreciation straight
off the bat, simply because of who we are. They are going to give up their
precious time to listen to us, but why should they? Tell them of your
experience in the area, and reason why you are the one standing up to make the
presentation as opposed to them.

Give the audience your attention

If you are expecting
your audience to pay attention to you, you need to pay attention to them. That
said, learn your presentation, or at the very least, the basic structure
beforehand. Yes, off-the-cuff might work for one in a thousand, but no one
wants to listen to someone stumble their way through their presentation with Mr
Blobby-like co-ordination. Rehearsing a handful of times in front of family,
friends, or even the mirror, will give you the confidence to act upon their
reactions, as opposed to aimlessly talking to a screen.

Watch your timing

No one is here to
suggest that a slide of a PowerPoint should take an hour, but if you try and rush
through the first slide, by the second you will have lost all your audience in
transit. Take a step back when you are initially planning your presentation:
work out exactly how many ideas you wish to propose and assign an appropriate
amount of time to each. Similarly, breathing can be incredibly under-rated —
don’t starve yourself of oxygen.

Add emotion

No one wants to walk
out after a presentation and think, ‘well there goes half an hour of my life
I’m never going to get back’. Therefore, add at least the tiniest portion of
emotion. You don’t have to put in a performance deserving of an Oscar but
showing your audience you are interested in what you’re speaking about is
essential —if you don’t care, how can you expect them to? Obviously, we won’t
always be tasked with speaking about a topic we would die for, but by racking
your brain and coming up with why it’s important to you, you’ve certainly made
a start.

Know your audience

Not many of us would
have the same conversation with our mother and grandmother as we would do in
the pub on a Saturday afternoon after football. The reason we don’t is because
we can successfully take heed of our audience — and a presentation is no
different. Jokes are often inappropriate in a presentation, but if you’re going
to use them, at least make sure they are going to be understood.

Images can make or break a presentation

Using pictures and
diagrams throughout your presentation can be a fantastic method of grabbing
attention, as an overload of text can often prove to be challenging to divulge,
particularly if it’s a large group. However, if you are going to go down the
road of using images, make sure that they can be easily seen and interpreted. The
sheer quality of a picture can act as a make or break for the entire success of
your presentation.

Tell a story but ensure you feel
confident in the content

This is something that
many people will struggle to do — it requires a lot of creativity. Rather than telling
jokes, this can be the perfect way to get your audience laughing, and for that,
they will remember you. Your story can be whatever you want because it’s your
story. Make the detail as extravagant as you like, just be confident that the
content of the story relates to the purpose of your presentation.

Winding things up… make an impact

What the audience will
hear at the end is the first thing they are going to remember afterwards. It is
no surprise that the cliché of ‘going out with a bang’ has stuck around for so
long — because if we don’t, we’ll be forgotten in a flash.

Article provided by Where The Trade Buys, a UK print company offering high quality book printing for various sectors, including the construction industry.