Good presentation skills enable you to excel in your studies and professional career. Make a good impression by improving your public speaking skills as a student, at work meetings, media functions or on special ceremonious occasions. Here are some useful instructions.
Write or type your speech neatly and memorise some or all of it. If your presentation is on a laptop and projector or any other technical devices, make sure that you know how to use all the equipment and that they are functioning properly. If it’s possible, do a mic-check and rehearsal before the main event.
What you wear is very important, your outfit should reflect the nature of your presentation. Stick with corporate attire or adhere to the event’s dress-code, select clothes that make you look neat and presentable. Black, navy blue, grey and white are excellent colour choices for official gatherings. Wear comfortable shoes, especially if you will be standing for a long time.
Keep your head up, shoulders relaxed, back straight and smile appropriately. When you look confident, it makes people pay closer attention to you. Avoid pacing around and stand in one spot, unless you are presenting on a large platform. Use your hands to form subtle gestures and make random eye contact with some people in the audience.
Warm up your voice by drinking a soothing beverage such as herbal tea with lemon. Don’t talk too much before your appearance as this could strain your vocals. During your presentation, speak at an audible level that is not overly loud or soft and make sure to articulate your words for better emphasis. Breathe naturally and stay calm, rushing will only make you appear nervous and you might lose your focus.
Ask a few guests or colleagues who witnessed your presentation to give you an honest evaluation of what they think you did right or wrong and where you need to improve. Presenting is a skill that is learned, so keep developing it and soon you will become an expert.