Successful presentation skills can make or break your career. Speaking in front of a group of people can be difficult but there are simple ways to help yourself build confidence and your career.
*Many people get very nervous during a presentation and can forget to breathe. While talking it is important to remember to take regular breaths. Before starting take a few deep breaths to help you to relax.
*When you start your speech find a focal point in the room. It may be something in the back of the room, a window, someone in the audience or even the podium. If you lose you place or find yourself stumbling a bit, pause and lock in on your focal point. This helps you collect your thoughts without going into a panic.
*Look people in the eye while speaking, if you can, but don’t stare! If this is difficult for you, one trick is to look at their forehead. From a distance the audience will never know the difference and the effect is still the same.
*Plan what you are going to say but do not memorize it. Try writing down keywords or key subjects on paper in outline form in case you need to look at it. This ensures you do not forget what you want to say and also allows opportunity to ad lib which always sounds more natural.
*I always like to start off a talk or presentation with some humor, sort of an ice breaker. I participated in a presentation years ago at Virginia Tech University. We were proposing to construct an addition to their football field. My job was to present the price. My opening comment was, ‘I won’t keep you in suspense. Let’s get the price out on the table right now!’ upon which I proceeded to pull the estimate out of my pocket and, upon examination, and while putting my glasses on, said, ‘Whoa, this price is SO LOW I have to get my glasses out to read it!’ It was not much of a joke however a couple of people did laugh and it gave me a huge confidence boost.
*Finally, I advise you to talk a bit slower than normal. Often times, because you are nervous, words tend to come out of your mouth entirely too fast. I hope this article helps you to deliver a quality public speech.
Allen Jossim is a freelance writer and blog master of Public Speaking – You Can Do It
Allen Jossim has sold stamps and collectibles on ebay for 12 years. He also is a successful
freelance writer. Allen is a retired executive from a major international commercial
construction firm who enjoys living in rural north Georgia with his wife, dogs and cats!