10 Simple Tips to Improve your Presentation Skills Easily
A quick primer on persuasive speaking by Think.Story.Speak, a Singapore-based company that provides expert presentation training in Singapore.
Does your throat dry up, and your heart start racing when you give a presentation? Glossophobia, also known as the fear of public speaking, is one of the most common phobias, affecting up to 75% of the population.
In Singapore’s competitive school and work environments, public speaking is still a common fear that affects everyone, from young adults to established professionals, hindering their true potential to succeed. The good news is that there are simple tricks you can use to add flair and engagement to your speeches, whether you’re speaking to your fellow students or delivering a high-stakes presentation to senior management.
1. Set a Clear Persuasive Goal
Take some time to reflect on what you hope to accomplish with your presentation and how it will benefit your audience. Do you wish to share vital information with your peers? Do you need to sell a new product to potential clients? Whatever your assignment, always ensure your objective is clear, specific, and persuasive. If you try to achieve too much in a single presentation, chances are you’ll make it harder for the audience to understand what’s important.
2. Project Passion
When you speak with genuine enthusiasm, your audience will find it much easier to listen. While developing your presentation, identify what facets of your work inspire passion and actively include them in your content. And if that sounds too difficult, think about a successful outcome you care about that your presentation might help you achieve.
Speaking with passion can also help you overcome nerves because you’ll be more focused on what you’re saying and less self-conscious about your performance.
3. Share a Personal Story
For a successful presentation, good public speakers understand the importance of storytelling. However, talking about yourself, such as using personal tales to explain your views, can be even more effective. Personal stories can help your audience understand you better, and they can also help you relax because you are talking about something you know better than anyone else.
4. Add Humour
Humour can quickly endear you to an audience because it shows you don’t take yourself too seriously. If you can make your audience laugh a few times, they will be more attentive to your main points, which will help you relax. However, avoid making obvious jokes, as they can come out as forced. Instead, try to include a few amusing insights about your work or the topic you’re discussing.
5. Provide Key Takeaways
Make sure your audience doesn’t question what your presentation was about once you’re finished. Your take-home points are the concepts and messages you want your audience to remember, the things you hope will stick with them for a long time. When you’re winding things up at the end of your presentation, conclude by summarizing your main points and adding a related call to action.
6. Audience Participation
Ensure your presentation isn’t one-sided. By asking your audience questions and encouraging them to participate, you can engage with them better. That said, be sure your audience can address your inquiries; rather than respond with a wall of silence. Similarly, if someone asks a question while you’re speaking, it’s often better to answer it immediately rather than waiting until the end of your presentation.
7. Be Prepared
Unexpected difficulties can throw even the most experienced presenter off, especially when technology is involved. If you’re using audio-visual aids, be sure you have a backup plan if your computer breaks or your internet connection goes down. Having a tech contingency plan is like an insurance policy for your confidence.
8. Practice Makes Perfect
If you have the opportunity, practice your presentation as much as you can. Rehearse until you feel comfortable with your subject matter. Aim to deliver your presentation naturally as if you were talking with a close friend. Deliver at least one practice run in front of a friend or family member.
9. Visualize Success
Besides practice, visualizing yourself presenting a terrific presentation can also enhance your confidence. Before your presentation:
- Take some time to relax, quieten your mind, and practice deep breathing to slow your heart rate down.
- Once you’re relaxed, picture yourself speaking with confidence to a receptive audience.
- Tell yourself: “I will deliver a great presentation today.”
10. Avoid Speaking on an Empty Stomach
Before delivering your presentation, eating something is advisable; even small bites are better than nothing. If you’re apprehensive, having a snack before your speech may be the last thing on your mind, but it can help you stay attentive and minimize physical distractions. Alternatively, consider a burst of physical exercise. Exercise helps your body burn stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol, so go for a brisk walk or engage in some energizing stretches before speaking; you’ll feel a lot better.
Need some extra help?
It’s no secret that excellent presentation skills are an asset for anyone looking to make a great impression. Think.Story.Speak is a company that offers bespoke presentation training in Singapore. We work with all budding presenters, entrepreneurs, and professionals who want to enhance their communication skillset!
We guide you each step of the way by offering in-depth preparations and rehearsals for high-stakes presentations. Whether you want to cinch a prospective client or prevent your upcoming speech from sending people to sleep, we also provide personalized coaching in all the essential elements of presentation delivery, from personal styling to voice work.
If you want to enhance your charisma and credibility, talk to Think.Story.Speak. Our presentation skills courses give you the chance to work with some of the best public speaking coaches in Singapore, helping you become the best version of yourself.
And our customized presentation skills courses in Singapore give professional teams a persuasive edge. Contact us for a consultation; it’s obligation-free.