Why Presentation is Important
How you present yourself for your speech will leave a lasting (or forgettable) impression. Apart from ensuring your speech is relevant and stirring, your visual aids are working and up-to-date and you have practiced your delivery, you need to think about your appearance. Here are some points to keep in mind for a top-drawer presentation:
- You have practiced your presentation so it is familiar and you are comfortable with how you deliver it.
- You are passionate about the speech topic so you can present with energy. Your audience will feel your passion and be moved into action.
- You have researched your audience and you can relate your material to their circumstances.
- Your facts are backed up with relevant statistics and anecdotes. You have checked that all visual aids are in order and working.
- When you step on stage to present your speech you are prepared to give a performance. You want to be remembered as a powerful speaker, so each time you will ‘perform’ to the audience.
- Your voice intonation is interesting. You vary the pitch and loudness of your delivery. This will again enhance the presentation and help the audience to stay with you.
- Making eye contact with your audience will personalize your presentation. They will feel that you are personally talking to them.
- Smile! Use your facial expression to deliver your speech, but above all remember to smile in appropriate places. This makes you more personable and smiles are infectious.
- Think carefully about the clothes you wear. No matter what the occasion you are speaking at, over dressing is far better than under dressing. A suit gives you credibility. Make sure your hair is neat and your suit is clean and pressed. If you show up to the venue and feel over dressed can you remove your jacket to feel more comfortable? Assess the situation, but always maintain your image as a credible speaker.
- Try not to appear too nervous. This is difficult if your hands are shaky and your voice quavering. Do some deep breathing and relaxation exercises before you take the stage. Voice exercise such as ‘mooing’ not only warm up the vocal chords but relax you.
- Think about how you stand and move around the stage. Don’t slouch, but don’t be too stiff. You want your audience to relax and not be intimidated by you, but you also want them to respect you. Practice your stage stance before you present your speech.
How you present yourself will go a long way to selling your message. Not only will the audience remember your message, they will remember you. Presentation of self and material are equally important – make sure you have covered them both.