Simple ways to improve your presentations

The four “P”s of presenting

 We all have had to stand in front of a group of people and try to convey a message effectively while making sure we keep everyone’s attention at all times. Some people are naturally gifted and manage to keep an audience engaged without much effort. However, this is possible for all of us if we keep some things in mind before and during the presentation: The Four “P”s

  1. Plan = KnowingWhen you plan that presentation, you have got to make sure you know about all the factors involved: know your audience, know your available resources, know your objective and know your key message. Remember, planning is not optional!
  2. Prepare… what?There are usually 3 elements involved: content, visuals and handouts.
    • When preparing the content of the presentation, remember that you have had time to research and make sure all your information is accurate. However, remember content is like water, it will take the shape of the container. Therefore, be careful how you structure the information and how the flow of ideas is organized.
    • When preparing visual aids, make sure you take certain things into account: color scheme, font and size. Stay away from unnecessary animation!
    • If you need to use handouts, consider when you will give them out. Remember, people will naturally stop listening to someone if they are distracted by other material.
  3. PerformPresenting can be considered a performance, so go for it! Incorporate inviting body language and make eye contact with your every person in your audience, if possible. Keep your energy up and remember how your intonation is a key, but sometimes forgotten, tool.
  4. PersuadeNot every presentation has the ultimate objective of persuading your audience. However, every person listening to you should know why they are there and what is there to gain from listening to you. Speak of the benefits of your idea or proposal in a way that everyone can feel part of it.There are many more things to consider when trying to deliver an effective presentation. If you have more tips, please put them on the comments so we can include them in a second part!

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