Tips For a Successful Presentation

Is a good presentation between you and cracking a big business deal? A successful presentation is a stepping stone for achieving great success- be it in your business or as a person. A good orator always commands a lot of attention and respect.

In the case of a presentation, the age old cliche of ‘the first impression is the last impression’ holds true. People always are in the awe of a person who makes a presentation that is sound content-wise and presentation-wise.

Keep the following tips in mind to give that applause-worthy presentation:

Check the equipment beforehand:

This is perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind before the presentation. Make sure that all the equipment to be used is in proper condition and is functioning well. An erratic projector or a mouse that refuses to click will cause trouble during presentation. Such inconveniences only cause the attention to waiver from the important issues in the speech.

Make a great start:

A good start is half the battle won. The attention of the audience peaks during the first few minutes of the talk. In these few minutes, you have to put forth the most interesting points of the presentation, which will attract their attention and make them feel that the rest of the presentation is as important.

Don’t memorize:

If your speech looks like you have learned everything by-heart, it will make you look dull and the audience will lose their attention. Be as natural as possible and use body gestures to make the audience focus on you. Try to bring out your personality in your presentation and use plenty of real-life examples to emphasize the points you are making.

Keep your ideas concise and to the point:

Nobody likes to hear jargons and flowery words. As the attention span of the audience is very short, use of words that most of them won’t understand will lead to lose their attention. Concise and to the point ideas will receive proper attention and consideration from the audience. Easier words and simpler sentences won’t put a burden of the audience’s brains and will make the session more interactive.

Provide hand-outs:

Giving away some material like feedback forms or question and answer sheets will ensure participation of the people present in the hall. This will make it fun for those participating and they will pay more attention if there is a form to be filled or a partner activity to be done.

Be interactive:

Always involve your audience in what you do. Ask them questions randomly or tell them to jot down important points that would be discussed at the end of the session. This will not only ensure their attention but will also keep them active and enjoy your talk.

Keep it visual:

Pictures speak more than words. People remember things when a visual aid is provided. Use colourful charts, texts and graphs to make your presentation more interesting. Use of specific colour schemes such as yellow text on a dark blue background helps people to focus on it and remember it for a long time. Don’t use cluttered diagrams or graphs. Don’t go overboard with the use of colour.

Don’t make an effort to be funny, be natural:

Many a times, the speaker goes overboard by trying to be funny and win the hearts of the audiences. Unfortunately, instead of winning hearts he/she ends up losing their attention. So remember, always be natural. If humour comes naturally to you, it’s welcome. Otherwise, don’t force it!

Take questions:

One of the key traits of a good speaker is to take questions from the participants and answer them humbly. Do not speak about things you don’t know or are unaware of. Most people are okay with you saying, “I don’t know”. Never fake it because nothing will shoot down your credibility faster! Be honest and answer questions which you can do the most justice to.

Have a good conclusion:

A good conclusion is as necessary as a good start to make your session successful. Summarize all the key and important points at the end of the lecture. Try and cover every aspect possible in a concise way. The participants should feel that they have learnt many important things as a result of your session. This ensures participation in future presentations too.

Keep it short and simple:

Always value time and never exceed your stipulated time limit. Don’t test the patience of the audience by taking more time to finish than expected. A presentation that is short yet effective is remembered and is appreciated.

If all these things are kept in mind, you are sure to make a mark in the presentation arena!

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