Presentation skills are becoming increasingly important on a job market where job descriptions include many more and much more varied attributions than they used to. Being effective at sustaining presentations is a must-have in pretty much all aspects of a business. You want to make yourself understood, and at the same time look confident, intelligent, trustworthy and, most of all, comfortable talking to them.
Here are 4 great tips that will help you improve your presentation skills:
1. Research! In order to have credibility, you need to be an expert on the topic….or at least sound like one. Even if you might have a degree in a certain field, and even if you have experience, you need to make sure that no one in the audience will embarrass you by proving he knows things that you should know (but don’t). This is particularly important considering the vast amount of research being carried out and published today. So keep yourself updated – the information is a click or two away.
2. Adapt your presentation to the audience! You’ll most likely know the characteristics of the audience. Use technical language if you’re dealing with experts; refer to things you know interests them if you’re presenting to your peers, or keep the language simple if you’re talking in front of total novices.
3. Integrate visual material! People retain much more information if it is presented as both audio and visual. Make a PowerPoint presentation or play a short video. People will notice that you took the presentation seriously and put effort in thinking how to make it more fun. Chances are you’re going to have a projector in the room. If you usually have trouble finding one where you make your presentations, consider investing in a portable projector – it will certainly impress everyone in the audience.
4. Plan and rehearse!
Usually a time limit exists for any presentation. Find out what it is, and rehearse the presentation in order to make sure you’ll have enough time to finish without skipping any important points. Leave a few minutes for questions if that’s included in the presentation time. Additionally, practicing will allow you to be more confident in your mastery of the subject, plus help you become aware of any improvements you need to make in your presentation style.