Confidence and Preparation are Key to Powerful Presentations
The most common fear people have, more so than flying or of heights, is speaking in public. If you have been asked to give a presentation, you may understand the anxiety and fear that consume people who are scared of public speaking. If you are one of those people who dread speaking in front of an audience, you may be envious of people who appear relaxed and confident when giving a speech.
The key to powerful presentations is to be prepared and to appear confident. Here are some other helpful hints to deliver powerful presentations:
- Act naturally–Study yourself in the mirror prior to your presentation and try to feel relaxed. If you are stiff and nervous, your audience will sense a lack of confidence.
- Be aware of your body language–Your body reflects what you are saying and feeling. Keep your hands out of your pockets, and don’t play with your hands during your presentation. Use your arms and hands naturally to gesture, or keep your hands comfortably at your sides.
- Smile–If your subject matter allows, try to smile a lot. It will convey the message that you’re relaxed and put your audience at ease, too. Your message will be more readily received if you appear personable and approachable.
- Dress professionally–You should not wear anything that will detract from the message you present. Make sure your hair does not cover your eyes, and wear comfortable clothes and shoes when presenting.
- Rehearse with your audio and visual aids–There is nothing more embarrassing than a technology break down when you’re presenting. Rehearse with your audio and visual aids and props will help your presentation go smoothly and will allow time to mix malfunctioning equipment.
- Vary the pace and tone of your speech–A monotone delivery is one surefire way to put your audience to sleep. By varying your tone and pace, you will keep your audience interested and engaged.
If you want to give powerful presentations, practice practice practice! If you are unprepared, your audience will know it. If you are prepared, then relax, be confident, and your audience will love you!