Top 10 Presentation Tips

I recently did some in-house training on presentation skills thought you might enjoy reading the Top 10 presentation tips that came out of our discussion:

  1. Know your content – This is the #1 differentiator between a great presentation and a lousy one.
  2. Eye Contact – Make eye contact with your audience.
  3. Paint a picture with your words – Explain your points through short stories. Great speakers use stories to create an emotional connection between ideas and their audience.
  4. Stick to your topic – Remember what type of presentation you are giving and be certain you are focused on achieving the desired result.
    1. Informative Tell others about something they should know about
    2. Instructional – Teach others something they don’t know
    3. Arousing – Make them think, change their thought process (a great example would be the Monica Lewinsky TED talk)
    4. Persuasive – Talk them in to taking an action. Tell the audience what to do, how to do it, what happens if they don’t take the action.
  5. Slow Down – Nervous and inexperienced speakers tend to talk way to fast, slow your speech down and add pauses for emphasis.
  6. Don’t Read –If you don’t know your speech without cues it shows you don’t really understand your message.
  7. Good Questions – Use statements like, “that’s a really good question,” to encourage more questions.
  8. Show up Early – Show up early, check out the room, and run through your slideshow if at all possible.
  9. Practice – The secret to becoming a great speaker is to practice, speak, then speak some more.  The more you speak the better you will become.
  10. Have Fun – Enthusiasm is contagious, so is a complete lack of passion for your topic.