Read This Article If You Want to Give the Best Presentation of Your Life

By giving the best presentation of your life you will expand your skills and abilities in public speaking. The expectations you have of yourself will be increased. Your progress towards greater confidence, a broader network base and a widened field of potential clients will be realized. Winners stand out from the pack. They are looked up to and people who are looked up to become leaders. You will be viewed as a leader. People follow leaders.

If you are reading this article then obviously you want to improve your presentation skills. You realize that these skills are important not only in business but in other walks of life as well. You’re not content with your present status quo; you seek improvement, growth and positive change. You are to be congratulated. Just be prepared to work for that improvement – hard work, and lots of it. Paradigms are not broken and reset by slackers.

Do you need to excel? To continually improve and develop? Would you relish change or do you harbor a certain uneasiness about it? Improvement means growth. Growth means change. Approaching change often triggers apprehension. Apprehension though, is not necessarily a bad thing. It can cause us to pause, think and reflect on a course of action we’re about to embark on. Jesus Christ himself said, “Who of you that wants to build a tower does not first sit down and calculate the expense, to see if he has enough to complete it?” (Luke 14: 28) That is, consider in advance the outcome(s) of what you’re planning. Embrace the positives. Minimize the negatives, if there are any. Then proceed.

America’s 16th president, Abraham Lincoln said, “Whatever you are, be a good one.” You should be proud that you aspire to be the best. But giving the best presentation of your life goes far beyond that. You want to exceed all now established limits – to break the mold so completely that a whole new standard is set. Your paradigms will be forever changed to a new and higher level. Be proud that you want to be skilled at such an important level. “Have you beheld a man skillful in his work? Before kings is where he will station himself, he will not station himself before common-place men.” (Proverbs 22:29) You’re now headed for higher ground. It’s time to get “gussied up”.

The challenge of giving the best presentation of your life will involve work and preparation on your part. How to speak in public and presenting well requires attention to aspects such as:

o Poise and grooming

o Natural use of relevant language

o Application of quotes, anecdotes and humor

o Overcoming any fear of public speaking

o Knowledge of presentation programs and techniques

o Mastery of your presentation topic material

With proper preparation and perseverance there is little you cannot accomplish in time. If you genuinely think you’ll succeed, you will. It’s up to you and you alone. In upcoming articles we will discuss things you can do and techniques you can apply to ultimately give the best presentation of your life – again and again and again. You have my backing and support.

Presentation Tips From an Expert

Have you ever felt you needed a ‘booster shot’ of confidence for that important business presentation coming up? Or perhaps, you’d like a quick ‘refresher’ of some proven success strategies to get you off on the right track?

As a full-time speaker and presentation skill instructor, I’ve often been asked at parties and social gatherings “What tips would you suggest for an upcoming presentation I have?”

Here are 4 Quick Tips that I’ve shared more than once in the past with individuals at social gatherings:

  1. Focus on your Audience Not on Yourself! Take the heat off of yourself. The AUDIENCE & the MESSAGE are what is most important.
  2. Be Crystal Clear about your message! If you had to summarize the main point of your talk in one sentence, what would it be? I know it seems like a challenge but it’s critical. Your Audience does it all the time – with or without your help. Wouldn’t you like ‘their sentence’ to match ‘your sentence’?
  3. BE CONVINCED that your message will benefit the audience! They either WANT to know this, NEED to know this, or your message is somehow going to BENEFIT THEM. If you’re not sure that the message has value, what could you add to insure that it does? Confidence in the message and its value translates into speaker confidence. MORE VALUE FOR THE AUDIENCE = MORE CONFIDENCE FOR YOU! It’s a simple equation that works.
  4. Explain the numbers!… Especially if you are a technical or financial speaker. Don’t just report the numbers, explain what they mean. Is a 20% increase a good thing or a poor showing? Is $50K a high number or a low number relative to your context? Also, PAINT WORD PICTURES. It will help your Audience really grasp the significance of your data. For example, if I simply made a factual statement that 25,000 American men died annually of prostate cancer, almost everyone would say they ‘understood’ the information. But, simple understanding is NEVER the entire goal. We want people to REMEMBER what we say and TAKE ACTION on the information they receive. What if I could explain the same number in a way that connected at a deeper level of understanding?… one that would help the audience retain the information, or, perhaps, even motivate them to take action?

“Imagine a jumbo jet with 500 passengers crashing into the side of a mountain. The following week another plane crashes, with no survivors. The third week, another… for 52 weeks in a row! How many weeks would it take before we were all ‘up in arms’ demanding that the aviation industry do something to fix this? Yet, that is how many American men die each year from Prostate Cancer – a curable disease.”

Don’t just tell the numbers, find ways to explain the numbers and your audience will listen, understand and, perhaps, actually remember long enough to take action. Now, there is a GOAL worth having!

So the next time you are reflecting on your own upcoming presentation, pretend we just met last night at a party and chatted. Take a deep breath and relax knowing that any one of these tips can help you deliver your presentation with more confidence knowing that you are providing VALUE to your audience.

How To Review a Friend’s Video Presentation Part 1

OK, so your friend or co-worker has asked you to review a video she’s made of herself. She wants you to give her honest feedback about how she’s presenting.

You’ve said yes–hey, maybe she’s promised to treat at the movies.

So, here are some quick tips so that you can place yourself in the best “reviewing frame-of-mind” before you sit down to watch her video.

Part One of helping your friend review her video presentation is to make sure you’ve asked her the old boring Who, What, Where, When slew of questions. These questions are kind of like filling your car with gas–mundane but you can’t go far without it.

Oh, and please grab a piece of paper to jot down her answers; it’s not cheating to refer to some notes while you watch the video she’s made. Go ahead and ask her:

Who is her audience? Is your friend into poetry? Is she presenting a reading of her original work at a slam? Or is she entering an Oral Interp competition? It matters.

It matters because you need to be able to put yourself, at least mentally, in the audience’s shoes. Ministers preside over weddings and funerals and Sunday Service, but they are discrete audiences and the sermon needs adjusted accordingly. It’s the same with nearly every presentation. You need to know just a bit about her audience and the setting she is presenting in.

So not only do you need to know “who” she is talking to, but you need to also know where they are at–are they in a small bar, in a church, in a tent-revival setting, in a conference room, in the person’s home? The preacher adjusts the message for the setting and for the audience. Salespeople do the same. You have to adjust your attitude based on where your friend is presenting. Only then can you judge if her style and body language and tempo are appropriate for the atmosphere.

Ask her for the size of the audience. If it’s a small gathering, a presentation that mixes both standing and sitting may be appropriate. Plus you’ll be able to tell if her voice is too loud or if she’s speaking too fast.

Next, ask her when she’ll be delivering her talk. Evening? Morning? Near a certain holiday? Again, based on her answer you’ll be able to imagine yourself feeling like the person watching your friend would feel during the pitch. Is your friend on just before lunch? Picture your stomach growling, and that your mind is starting to think about lunch. Is your friend engaging enough to make you want to put off a bite to eat for five more minutes, or is she droning on redundantly?

Next: Don’t Blink, because first impressions count.