Improve your presentation skills as you are no doubt aware, public speaking ranks up there with death and taxes in terms of things people would rather avoid, but it’s one of the most effective ways to increase your influence and lead your organization to succeed in today’s competitive business landscape.
Despite how nerve-wracking it may be, it’s important to work on improving your presentation skills in order to help you boost your career prospects and advance your goals within the company. Here are nine simple tips that will help you instantly improve your presentation skills for business presentations and more.
1. How to Stand
One of your biggest jobs as a presenter is to keep your audience engaged. In order to do that, you’re going to need more than just words—you’re going to need some body language. Stand in an open area, avoid hiding
behind a podium, and use animated gestures and facial expressions. The easier it is for your audience members to read you, the easier it will be for them to absorb what you’re saying.
2. Eye Contact
Most people don’t make enough eye contact during a presentation. It’s a simple thing, but good eye contact can help you connect with an audience and build credibility. Practice your delivery in front of a mirror or with trusted
colleagues. This will help you monitor and adjust your body language as you go.
Gestures are an important way for you to express yourself when speaking. While some gestures might be appropriate in certain professional settings, others may not be perceived as positive (or even rude). It’s important to understand what kinds of gestures are generally accepted in your industry, and which ones aren’t.
If possible, practice with a friend before giving your presentation—this way you can ensure that no inadvertent gesture is going to give away too much information or do more harm than good.
If you are not quite as confident in public speaking, and you want to become more so, practice is the key to success. Every time you step up to the podium or speak with a group of people, don’t go in thinking about what may go wrong; focus on what can go right instead.
You already possess the desire to gain more confidence by giving a presentation—what you need now is more positive thinking. And don’t let yourself get bogged down by your anxiety over making a small mistake (as we’ve said, these things happen). Instead, give your best effort and remember that no one expects perfection—only sincerity.