This means they either over-prepare or often under prepare. So here are some presentation practice tips. Once you have prepared your presentation, good practice is key. There are ways to get a lot done in a short timeframe too, so no excuses! The more you practise, the more comfortable you will feel – particularly if you can enlist a friend or colleague to watch and give you constructive feedback.
Once you have landed on your presentation content following the 4MAT system outlined in my book and presentation skills training sessions. (See more in the blog post ‘How to avoid reading your presentation’).
The next stage is to create index cards. Dee recommends using key words with a visual to accompany each key word. Once you have practised your presentation using the cards, try it without, and refer to them only when needed. You’ll be amazed by how much you remember. The benefit of using this approach is that it allows your personality to come into play. Your talk will be conversational and friendly in style, yet structured and professional too.
Getting your timing right is an important part of your practice. Make sure you time your talk as you deliver it to a ‘real’ audience, rather than the mirror. Ask them if the speed was ok, as we all have a tendency to speed up! Then get used to keeping an eye on the clock.
Whether you have to learn something word for word (I really don’t encourage this unless there is a very good reason) or just want to get familiar with your presentation, it’s a good idea to think about what kind of learner you are. If you learn best by hearing things or talking out loud, for example, try this exercise:
If you’re a visual learner, and have got rid of all your Monkeys, you could try the same exercise but substitute the recording for a video of your presentation that you watch back. Check your posture and see where you need to add more emotion or additional interest points.
The best way to approach a talk or presentation is to take full responsibility for everything and do as much as possible to ensure it goes well, then on the day adapt as you need to suit the audience.
Simply Amazing Training offers professional presentation skills training courses for companies and individuals. Have a look at our Guide to our most popular training courses and presentation skills workshops or call me today for a chat to discuss; we recognise that all of our clients are different and have different needs when it comes to their in house company training courses.
Think about the speakers you admire, and you’ll notice that they share a common trait: they have all mastered how to use effective pauses. The humble pause is often overlooked, but it really shouldn’t be …
The presentation is your chance to shine. You are away from the constraints of just answering questions.
“What’s your X-Factor?”
Treat it as your opportunity to show others what makes you unique.
Recently we ran an event for the 40 members of the global sales team of a multi-national, working with them to ‘Tame their Public Speaking Monkeys’ and help them increase their confidence when presenting.