Learn how to give a great presentation.
Have a presentation coming up? You’ll want to be prepared! We’ve got some helpful dos and don'ts to help you ace your next presentation. Feel like your presentations have fallen a bit flat? Let’s bring them back to life.
- A great presentation is clear, well-rehearsed and confidently delivered.
- Don’t overload your slides with too much text.
- You don’t want your audience to feel overwhelmed or confused by information.
- Do practice your presentation. Try practicing in front of a mirror, record yourself or ask a friend to watch. This will help you figure out if you’re trying to fit in too much information or if you’re taking too long.
- A great presentation has an agenda and the audience is able to easily follow along.
- Don’t compete with yourself for the audience's attention. Having too much going on- like multiple visual aids at once- has the potential to confuse your audience if you don’t use them properly.
- Do have a clear structure and plan for your visual aids. Visual aids should be your best friend- If you’re using handouts and slides, make sure you know why you’re using them and that the information complements what you’re speaking about, rather than introducing more content.
- A great presentation is fun to watch.
- Don’t read from the slides. A well polished and practiced presenter is comfortable with their material and doesn’t rely on the slides for information.
- Do be enthusiastic.
- Think about how quickly you’re talking and be sure to make eye contact with your audience. Everyone gets nervous, if you’re finding it hard to not look at the slides, try keeping your presentation notes on cue cards. But don’t forget about eye contact! If eye contact makes you nervous, try picking a few spots in the room to look at as you’re talking.
- A great presentation encourages discussion.
- Don’t take it personally if your audience asks tough questions. It’s better to admit that you don’t know, then to make up an answer. Do have a clear plan and think about potential questions. Keep in mind that “I don’t know” is a completely okay response. Try saying, “That’s a super interesting question! I’ll have to look into it and get back to you!”
So just to recap for your awesome presentation: Practice makes perfect Clearly share the purpose of your presentation with your audience, and stick to an agenda. Keep the audience engaged Get the audience thinking Always Plan: A strong finish is as important as a strong start You’re now ready to present like a pro. Have more questions? Check out more free library resources.
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