Presentation skills

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Presentation Skills

Table of content
Chapter 1 A presentation in four steps Chapter 2 Visual aids Chapter 3 Using PowerPoint for presentations Chapter 4 Learning and communication Chapter 5 Body language Chapter 6 Nervousness Chapter 7 Feedback Chapter 8 Questions Chapter 9 Work in a duo Chapter 10 Tips Appendix A Checklist 3 9 12 19 23 25 27 29 30 31 32


Chapter 1 A presentation infour steps
Once you know that you have to give a presentation on a certain date, you have to start preparing. This is not as easy as it may seem. Is there a systematic approach? If you use the following four steps, you will cover all important aspects of your presentation. 1. 2. 3. 4. What and why Who How (contents and structure) When and where

What and why
When you are asked to give apresentation somewhere, two questions should immediately come into your mind: “what am I supposed to talk about, and why am I asked to talk about this?”

What are you going to talk about? First of all, you need a topic for the presentation. In some cases this topic is given to you, but in other cases you have to think of one yourself. In choosing a topic, keep in mind that it is easier to talk aboutsubjects that are familiar to you. The more you know about a topic, the more enthusiastically you can talk about it and the easier it is for the audience to listen to. Start brainstorming and write down possible subjects for your presentation. Brainstorm about people, places, things, events, processes, concepts, problems, policies or anything else. Wait another day before choosing your finalsubject from the list you made. After you have chosen your topic, define your: • General objective: to inform, persuade or entertain the audience, and • Message or purpose: what do you want the audience to know, feel, believe or do after your presentation? Even if you have a short presentation the audience will not be able to remember everything you say. As soon as you start preparing your presentationyou should therefore ask yourself the following: “What is the one thing you want your audience to learn from this presentation?” Try to formulate the essence of your presentation in one clear sentence. This statement will help you during the rest of your preparation, when you collect and structure the information. It will form the red line of your presentation; everything else is there to supportit. As a consequence you will have a clear outline that will help the audience to listen to you. They will remember the things you stress, the things you find the most important. When you are specific in defining what you want to achieve with your presentation you can be more confident about it in front of an audience. When you are not sure about it yourself,


you will have a very toughjob convincing the audience. When you yourself do not believe in your topic, why should the audience believe in it? Ask yourself the following: • Do I fulfil the requirements of the assignment? • What do I want to achieve, what is my message? • Is everything I want to say relevant for the topic and interesting to the audience? The more specific you define your message and the more you relate it tothe audience, the more likely you are to achieve your purpose

Why are you invited to give a presentation? It is important to know more about the occasion and why you were invited. What do they expect of you? What is the goal of the meeting? Are you the only speaker? Do they want you to warm up the audience with an amusing story? Or are you the key speaker of the day, the expert on the topic? Themore you know about the occasion and your role in it, the better you can tailor your presentation to the needs of the audience

The audience determines the content and structure of your presentation. To get and keep their attention you have to tell them why they should listen. You should answer the unspoken question that is in everyone’s mind: “What is in it for me? How can I benefit...
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