Three Tips for Better Presentations

John Krautzel
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Business presentations are an important part of any organization, helping managers, team members and outside parties to successfully share knowledge or ideas with multiple individuals. These three major presentation tips help you form better presentation skills for verbal and visual impact, helping you impart an overall positive impression on your co-workers or employees.

1. Get Their Attention Early

One sure way to create better presentations is to hook your audience early in your presentation. The introduction is a crucial but often overlooked point within a presentation, and it is during this time when listeners decide how much attention they will give to your ideas. Engage your audience with a shocking fact or statistic, or ask a show-of-hands question related to your topic. You can also tell a related story of a personal experience. This is a fail-proof attention grabber that triggers emotion and makes the topic feel more real for listeners. Lastly, tell your audience how they can benefit from the topic you are discussing. If you are introducing a new strategy or technology to your workplace, for example, explain exactly how it can enhance productivity and streamline work processes.

2. Encourage Interaction

Creating an interactive experience for your audience is another sure-fire way to bring forth better presentations. Help audience members to feel closer to the topic by playing an icebreaker game during your introduction, or ask for volunteers for a related demonstration. Another way to create an interactive presentation is to allow the audience to ask questions. If you have a small group, give a notecard to each audience member before the presentation and ask them to write down any questions they have about the topic. You can then look them over and address them during the presentation. You might also allow for an open-ended question-and-answer session at the end of the presentation. If you choose this option, make sure you are well-versed on the topic so you can answer each question effectively.

3. Stay Focused and Sharp

If you want to create better presentations, you need to make sure your PowerPoint slides are well-crafted. Keep your audience engaged by putting as few words as possible on a single slide. The slides are meant to complement your spoken presentation, and forcing listeners to read long texts takes their attention away from you. If you are not able to condense a slide into one to ten words, consider instead handing out a printed document to each audience member before the presentation. You can also improve your PowerPoint slides by keeping bright colors, clip art and stock photos to a minimum. Unless they are relevant to your business presentation, they only distract your audience.

Use these presentation tips when forming your ideas, and remember that a better presentation is a shorter one. According to a study by renowned politician Maureen Murphy, people learn best in chunks of 20 minutes or less. Keep a positive attitude, make eye contact and feel passionate about your subject to give a better presentation that is both interesting and engaging.

 

(Photo courtesy of Ambro / freedigitalphotos.net)

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