What makes a successful presentation? When delivering a presentation, being a strong and confident speaker can help in engaging the audience.
The quality of your slides – the content and overall design – is another matter. You also have to consider other elements such as the venue and its effect on your delivery.
If it’s your first time to deliver a presentation, it’s okay to feel nervous. To help you overcome the jitters and ensure the success of your presentation, here are some tips that you may want to keep in mind:
Regardless of your topic, avoid making its scope too broad. Try to be specific by focusing on three or four important points. It would be great to tackle them in such a way that the first point flows logically to the next and so on.
Make sure that your information is clear and logical. Present what your audience is expecting to learn and stick to your agenda. In case they want to know more about your topic, they will ask for sure. Just be prepared for their questions, though.
Engaging Slide Design
Use appropriate colors when designing your slides. Avoid too many color combinations to maintain a clean and professional look.
The same goes for the text. Keep it to a minimum by aiming for one point for each slide. Be sure that the text is large enough to be read even by people at the back of the room.
To enhance readability, the slide’s background color and the text should have great contrast. Resist the urge to use fancy fonts. Plain and simple font types would do for better readability.
Don’t forget to use images. You can always use pictures or graphics to enhance your presentations, not to decorate the slides but to support your points. So make sure to use relevant and high-quality images.
When it comes to the venue, some variables can either enhance or reduce the impact of your presentation. If possible, visit the place in advance and check for the following:
Is the presentation going to be held indoors?
Will it be in a hall or a boardroom?
Will it be darkened?
Is the room carpeted? Or will the sound bounce off bare floors, instead?
To further get the feel of the place and be more confident on the big day, you may want to rehearse your presentation in the actual venue.
Your delivery can make or break your presentation. Make sure you have practiced your speech and the timing of your slides.
If possible, practice in front of a colleague and ask them to give genuine feedback. Recording your presentation using the record function in PowerPoint is also a great idea.
It can help you hear how you actually sound. If you notice anything off with your pitch or enunciation, make the necessary adjustments.