No matter what business you’re in, at some point in your work you’ll probably have to give a presentation. It might be to potential customers, investors, partners or new employees.The bad news is most of us hate talking to groups. The good news is, these are golden opportunities to deliver a powerful message and strengthen your business.
And, even better news is that anyone can make a great presentation, even if you hate doing them. Here are a few quick tips to get you going in the right direction.
It’s okay to be nervous. Get over it. (Rule #32)
Unless you’re an android, you probably get nervous before you speak. It’s no big deal. It’s part of being human. Understand, if you are truly prepared (like you know you should be) then your nerves are there to help you. They keep you sharp and focused.
Vary your voice (Rule #26)
Be excited and show it. Let the beast out. Don’t hold back. Lift up your voice and your energy level. When you do, you’ll also lift up your audience. You’ll get their attention and you’ll keep it.
If you want to make a point, lower your volume. Speak in a hushed whisper. It forces people to focus 100% on you and it gets their attention. We’re conditioned to pay attention when someone speaks in a hush or a whisper.
Keep your hands at your sides (Rule #42)
When you’re speaking to a group, let your hands rest naturally at your sides. That way, when you need them you’ll know where they are. You’ll look more natural and you’ll feel more relaxed. (Don’t clasp them in front of you or behind you it doesn’t look natural.)
Don’t use PowerPoint – Or any other visuals (Rule #22)
Visuals take the audience away from you. They become focused on the visual. But you want them to connect with you, not a PowerPoint slide. So, keep them focused on you by avoiding visuals.
You can find all 45 of my “New Rules of Public Speaking” here.