Does your jaw lock up at the thought of making a presentation to a large group? Does everyone else in your department seem to effortlessly give amazing presentations? This could be you, too, if you take the time to consider the suggestions Skip Prichard makes on his blog.
Delivering a good presentation is all about knowing your personal strengths and weaknesses. There is no shortage of experts who have identified and explained basic personality types. Prichard encourages readers to check out these kinds of details at Ethos3.com.
Regardless of the tool you use to become aware of your unique personality, the next steps you take are crucial. You need to make a conscious decision to change and then practice those changes. If you’re apt to digress, consider using an auto-timer for advancing your slides so you stay on track. If you’re super excited to be presenting a new product or service, you might have a tendency to rush through important information. There’s nothing wrong with a pause in your presentation. Take a drink of water, if necessary, to slow down. Let your audience catch up with you.
In talking with Scott Schwertly, founder and CEO of Ethos3, Prichard also revisits the importance of understanding two major components of every presentation – content and delivery. Your “presentation persona” has as much to do with what you choose to discuss as it does with the way you discuss it. In almost every instance, Schwertly says, speakers are tempted to cram too much material into their slides. With a little effort you can probably cut the quantity of your content by 10 percent.
The next time you’re putting together a presentation for a prospect, think about your audience. What are the ages of your audience members? What jobs do they hold in the organization? You can’t connect with every single member during every minute of your presentation, but planning your content and practicing your delivery will improve the impression you make and build your confidence.