I was waiting in a bank recently and started looking at their Newsletter for SME’s. I was attracted to an article entitled “10 Tips for Effective Presentations”. When I started reading, I went from the headline to the ten itemised tips. I started to read, and the tips 1 to ten began as follows  …

1 Lack of rapport…                  2 Being unauthentic …..          3. Inability to use silence….

4. Lack of facial expression…  5. Poor eye contact…              6. Tech Talking…

7. Lack of humour…                8. Lack of direction…              9. Lack of energy…

10. Boring language…

I thought, are these the 10 Tips for Effective Presentations? I wouldn’t like to be sitting through this lecture! And then I went back to the top and read through it again. Yes it was Ten Tips for Effective Presentations but at the end of the intro it outlined that these are the ten main reasons that presentations fail.

So being a positive person,  I would like to share my Actual Top Ten Tips for Effective Presentations. You have a presentation next week – what do you need to do to WOW your audience?

  1. Preparation – be prepared. If you are using slides, keep them simple and with a small amount of text, or better still use a few impactful pictures
  2. Tell a positive story. Have a beginning, a middle and an end to your presentation and know the positive messages you want to impart to your audience
  3. Style and substance … aim for a balance between the content of your presentation and your personality.  People often remember information because of the person who told them and how they got their message across
  4. Start strong. Presentations are like media interviews, your audience will decide quickly if they like you or if they want to listen to you, normally within the first few minutes of your presentation
  5. Engage with your audience and get from behind the podium. Presentations are about communicating and communications is a two way thing. Get closer to your audience to engage with them. Get eye contact and “work” the room, individual by individual
  6. Be enthusiastic in your presentations – show your passion for your subject – excite them with your passion and enthusiasm
  7. Keep it short. Focus on what you want them to take away from your presentation. Audience attention is greatest at the opening and then again at the end when you say something like “In conclusion…” Give them your key points at the beginning and again, especially at the end.
  8. Use blank slides. Blank slides focus their attention on you and your message
  9. Keep the lights on so that they can see you – your eyes and more importantly, your body language. Communications is not just about speech, tone and voice, but about all of the subtle ways that we communicate. According to scientists, body language accounts for between 80% to 90% of the message we tell
  10. Practice. Once you are comfortable with the content of your talk, then you can begin to engage more with the audience. By practicing what you are about to say you ensure that you are familiar with the content, thus allowing you to make the most of your message

If you want further tips, techniques and one to one training on your presentation, contact me at kobyrne@commuications-consultants.ie