There’s no one simple recipe for a great presentation. There are however a few things you can do to make your speech better and more engaging. This is what you can do well in advance, right before and during your talk to boost your presentation skills.
1. Well in advance: research and rehearse
Before you write down an outline of your speech, think about your audience. What is their expertise? What expectations may they have? How can you adjust your speech to their needs? Do it with your purpose in mind, whether it’s sharing your knowledge, selling a product or presenting a solution. Once you know what you want to say, rehearse, rehearse and rehearse again. Think ahead: what will you do in case of technical problems? How will you handle difficult questions?
2. Right before your speech: warm up your voice
The quality of your voice is a key in delivering a great presentation. Even if you’ve rehearsed many times, you’ll still need a little warm-up right before your speech. Humming will help to clear your voice and control your breath. Yawning will help to relax your jaw and release any tension and tongue twisters will improve your pronunciation. Remember to avoid large amounts of coffee. It will make your throat dry, which will affect your voice quality.
3. During your speech: catch their attention
Even if your slides are great and your content is interesting, you may still fail to engage your audience. Body language and eye contact play an important role, but what counts even more is your enthusiasm. It will help you connect with your audience and make your presentation credible. Let your passion shine through your words and develop a friendly tone of voice. Your audience may leave the room or fall asleep if your voice is monotonous or if you don’t seem to be interested in what you’re actually presenting.
What do you think are other useful techniques to engage your audience and make your presentation memorable?
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(Photo by D.Pawlak)