You’ve been asked to go into a law firm to do a presentation to the attorneys. What a great opportunity to share your knowledge. Here are presentation tips you need to know. Here are a dozen tips I have learned from my involvement with speaking and National Speakers Association
1. Don’t start by thanking the organizer for having you or saying you are happy to be there or that you are nervous. No one cares. The pros begin with a story.
2. Tell a story, make a point. Tell a story, make a point. People love stories.
3. Vary your pitch, volume and tone. Be a little more dramatic than you’d be talking to another person.
4. Make the information very relevant to the audience. Know their problems, and needs and speak to them. They’ll learn best from someone they perceive understands their needs.
5. If you are going to use PowerPoint, make sure you use images and not a bunch of words on the slides. Don’t read your slides, and don’t turn around and look over your shoulder at the screen. You can refer to them when the computer is in front of you.
6. Make sure you have your presentation on a thumb drive as well as on the hard drive. If you go in expecting to hook your machine up to the projector, and you find out the computer does not speak to the projector, you have an alternative – your thumb drive.
7. Make a point of talking to be people in the audience before your presentation. You will feel more comfortable speaking to individuals you have met, rather than to a mass of people.
8. Make sure you practice, practice, practice, and get your timing and stories down. Work out the timing so you know, based on how much time you have, where you should be in your talk at a particular time. Most people try to put too much into a presentation.
9. Keep eye contact with the audience. Look at all parts of the room. If you are right handed, you tend to look more at the right side of the room and vice versa. Counter that tendency.
10. Give the audience a chance to do something – raise their hands to a question that begins with “How many of you…” Scatter these questions through the program to keep them attentive. If you have a workshop of training session, have an exercise every 20 minutes or so.
11. If you ask for questions or comments, do that toward the end, but then finish in your own words, and on a strong point. Don’t make the last thing they hear be the answer to a question.
12. Smile and look like you are enjoying yourself. Your audience will warm to someone who is smiling.
These presentation tips will make you more comfortable with the process of sharing your expertise with your audience.