Creating an attention-catching business presentation which gets your point through smoothly is a tough task. Why do some presentations look like a work of art while others seem long and boring? It depends on the right approach, software, understanding of the audience, and, of course, skills.
Seeing The Big Picture
Did you know that 70 % of employers in the USA believe that presentation skills are vital to career success? An ability to make people hear what you have to say without yawning their heads off even when you are talking about meat canning techniques is priceless.
Men and women often have different approaches to making presentations. According to a 2009 study done by researchers at the University of Montreal, women are better at picking up emotions than men are. Accordingly, they have an easier time of giving a presentation since the audience’s reaction is highly important to its success.
How can women use their special skills to improve their business presentation? What can they do to make it work better? We asked a success life coach Liana Khutsurauli to give us a few tips.
1. Use The Right Software
When we say “right software”, we don’t mean the best one available on the market today. Whether you decide to use Powerpoint design services or settle for the visual Prezi approach, all works well as long as you are feeling comfortable with it.
In order for the presentation to go smoothly, you need to know the program in and out. So if you don’t have time to learn something new, stick to what you’ve already mastered.
2. Make Eye Contact
Since you want to use the skill of reading the audience’s emotions in full, you need to make sure your presentation is designed to let you make eye contact. Watch what the listeners are doing and how they are behaving.
When designing your presentation, always consider a plan B in case you notice the loss of interest in your audience’s eyes. You may want to prepare a joke or an interesting personal story to tell in order to regain people’s attention.
3. Use Videos
The visual component of the presentation should be well worked out. Today, when videos are gaining more and more popularity online, people are used to seeing them. In fact, they expect them.
It’s often better to get your point through with a short video than a long lecture. Of course, shooting a video requires a formidable investment. So if you are pressed for money or funds, you can settle for an existing film fragment that may get a point through.
If you don’t manage to find one (after all, it’s kind of tough to find a movie about meat canning, but we bet there is Tom & Jerry about it), use a video as a break when your audience gets tired. Get their spirits up with something funny and relaxing.
4. Consider Diversity
When making a presentation, remember that half of your audience can’t wait to shower you with questions or participate in a workshop while the other half feels comfortable sitting quietly and listening.
This means that you’ll never be able to design an ideal presentation for 100% of your audience. So do “half and half”. This way everyone gets what he or she wants.
5. Be an Expert
If you are giving a presentation, you must be ready to answer all kinds of questions about the subject. It’s not enough to make a bunch of beautiful and jaw-dropping slides. When the Q&A time comes, you must be ready to face it heads on.
People expect the lecturer or the presentation giver to be an expert in her subject. Sometimes, you’ll be asked something you can’t answer. You must be prepped for such a situation. Come up with an answer which doesn’t make you look unprepared in advance.
Some examples are:
- I’m planning to look deeper into this after we finish the presentation since it’s a truly interesting subject.
- I’ve never thought about it this way before. Thank you for giving me a new point of view.
Women may have an easier time interacting with the audience due to their natural skills. However, they still need to put in a lot of work to create a perfect presentation. The above tips can help both men and women make big steps toward business presentation excellence.