Good presentations can convey important information in a relatively short time. Bad presentations, on the other hand, are pure time wasters. A bad presentation always reflects on the presenter. You can quickly lose your reputation with your client or your supervisor because of a failed PowerPoint presentation. With far-reaching consequences for your career. That’s why today we’re going to show you more than just one presentation tip that will help you make a good impression in your next presentation.
PowerPoint presentations are an integral part of our working world today. Most salaried employees and independent contractors give presentations on a more or less regular basis. PowerPoint slides are used in team meetings just as much as in training sessions, information events or in sales. To explain the current status of an ongoing project to the college, two to three slides might be enough. For a training course, for example, much more extensive sets of slides are required.
Good presentations convey important information
in a short time
If you’re a master of presenting, you’ll be able to relay important facts and figures to your audience in a matter of minutes. The combination of information, visual components, such as pictures, graphics or animations, plus the explanations by the speaker, make presentations unbeatably effective. With good presentations, you can significantly increase productivity in meetings, sales calls, public relations, or continuing education. Any company or organization can benefit from conducting customer meetings or business meetings in a professional manner. These meetings should improve the exchange between the participants and quickly lead to results.
Bad presentations waste time
We have all experienced presentations that were uninspired and did not lead to any gain in knowledge. At best, you were just kept from more important things. In some circumstances, poor presentations lead to the communication of incorrect or incomplete information, cause confusion, and create additional work after the fact. For the unfortunate presenter, this may well have far-reaching consequences. From a negative review from superiors to losing customers, the consequences can be painful. Therefore, you should pay the necessary attention to the PowerPoint presentation topic.
Your next presentation is already waiting for you somewhere
You know it yourself: At some point you will stand in front of an auditorium again and have to deliver. This can be a great chance for you to get the necessary attention for your topic, to advance the project decisively, or to rise noticeably in the reputation of customers, students or superiors. So if you’ve been asked to show some slides at your next meeting, you know you can make an important contribution. You will make your audience smart, motivate and share your knowledge in an entertaining way. It’s good to know that you’re not wasting your viewers’ time, but using it efficiently.
ON A SCALE OF 1-10: HOW GOOD ARE YOUR PRESENTATIONS?
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Only: how do you actually do it right? Don’t worry, we will give you presentation tips that will help you get your presentation right and be the hero of the meeting.
Presentation tip 1: Prepare properly
One of the biggest mistakes speakers make is assuming they have to be perfect. Most try to play it safe and memorize their entire presentation. This has some benefit, but also a significant drawback: if you are excited or you someone asks you a question in the middle of your presentation, you could quickly lose your train of thought. Then nervousness can quickly escalate into panic. Getting back to your presentation from there will be very difficult.
Therefore, you better not become the slave of memorized texts. You will get the confidence you expect from memorization in a different way. Prepare very thoroughly for your presentation topic and make an outline. What do you want to convey? What key messages do your listeners need to get no matter what? How much time do you have available and how many slides can you show in the process? What content needs to go on each slide?
Once you’ve accomplished that, write down what you as the presenter want to say about each slide. You can use the “Add notes” command to insert bullet points directly below the slide if you actually need to “cheat” at some point.
So don’t memorize a speech, your audience will usually notice anyway. After you have created your one outline, practice speaking freely to each slide. Use your notes to do this until you feel confident. How does it feel to naturally go from one point to the next and then move to the next PowerPoint slide? Just speak normally, but get a feel for the structure of your presentation. How can you use your voice to emphasize the importance of individual points?
Presentation tip 2: Try to be relaxed
Admittedly, this is easier said than done. But try to put yourself in the shoes of your audience. A strained, introverted speaker just doesn’t make you want to listen closely. Probably many participants are not excited to once again sit in a long, boring meeting and listen to a PowerPoint presentation. So try not to reinforce the possibly negative expectations by being uptight yourself. Maybe you can start with a joke, or you can promise that your presentation will be as short as possible and really only cover the most important topics. You may also be able to announce a big surprise that your presentation is about to deliver. In any case, try to create as relaxed a mood as possible.
Presentation tip 3: Make eye contact with the audience
To keep your audience’s attention high, you should as often as possible Make eye contact. This applies regardless of whether you are in a small conference room or whether has rented a large hall for your presentation .
During your PowerPoint presentation try looking at one person from the auditorium and holding their gaze for a few seconds before moving on to another person. If the audience is large, don’t feel like you have to make personal eye contact with every single person. Pick out a few friendly faces from the crowd and make eye contact with them. This doesn’t sound very spectacular, but the effect on the audience is actually great.
Of course, this assumes that you keep your presentation free-flowing and don’t stare at your cheat sheets or the screen all the time.
Presentation tip 4: Present at the right speaking pace
When speakers get nervous, they tend to talk faster and faster. When the heart beats faster with excitement, we unconsciously also tend to talk faster . But if you speak too quickly, it will be difficult for your audience to follow what you are saying. But once your audience has given up listening to them, all your efforts have been in vain.
So if you notice that you are talking too fast, make a quick stop of three or four seconds and take a deep breath. Deep breaths lead to calming down and you can speak more calmly and slowly again afterwards.
Also, keep in mind that a sales presentation or a training presentation is usually intended to convey important information. Therefore, you should always talk a little slower than, for example, during a social evening with friends. Your audience should be able to grasp all the important facts without any problems.
Presentation tip 5: Pay attention to your posture
We communicate during slide presentations not only with our mouths, but with our entire bodies. You can use your arms and hands specifically as amplifiers of your words. The exact dosage is important here. Presenters who stand stock-still in front of their audience are just as unconvincing in the end as speakers who wave their arms around frantically. As a presenter, you can harmoniously combine voice, gestures and content and in this way decisively improve your impact. Take a look at some professional presentations on YouTube as a guide to this. You can also ask for training from a good presentation agency. The time required is kept within limits, because you will achieve enormous improvements very quickly with a professional care.
Presentations can be a burden, both for the presenter and the audience. But with careful preparation and a little training, you can turn your PowerPoint presentations into a powerful tool that gets your message across and underscores your professionalism.
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