"The goal of your presentation must be to inform rather than to impress."
When you attend any presentation and find it so good that it makes you feel inspired, that presentation needs all the applause. After all, it needs confidence, technique, knowledge, and patience to present in front of an audience. It looks pretty challenging, but some people make it seem like the easiest thing to do.
Well, everybody wants to know the secret of that confidence level? Preparation! Yes, you read it right. No matter how calm and peaceful the presenters look, they spend endless hours creating slides, writing thoughts of speaker's notes, and practicing every now and then. Because they are also in the same pressure as you do but yes they practice to overcome the fear of presenting in front of an audience.
Want to become that person who inspires others with his/her presentations? Use the checklist below to make sure that you are prepared:
Build Your Presentation
It is possible that you may be creating your presentation from scratch. Make sure you develop the slides in advance. Planning and preparing in advance is what is going to give you the time to practice. Spend an hour in presentation outline, another hour preparing the speaking notes, and the third hour in design work. This is how you will be able to successfully build a presentation. Staying calm and strategizing is going to help you in the process.
Oh!! Doesn’t it feel like a lot of work? let's break it down:
Out of your topic research, find the daylights. If You are working on a sales pitch presentation, then gather some data to support your presentation. If it is a large group audience, you need to work more on your talking points with research-based information. This might look tough and difficult for you, but a clear outline will make your life easier and your presentation a success.
The Speaking Notes
Here you need to understand what sort of speaking notes you require. During the talk, some speakers need short reminders to reference. Those who may like to write down entire presentations are not wrong. You just need to figure out how you will present the information correctly to your audience.
Developing and designing the presentation slides look very difficult, but they actually are not. Even if you don't know much about design, you can still make it look cohesive by selecting templates, color schemes and choosing simplicity.
Take Feedback on Your Slides
Contact a few of your honest and responsible team members and ask them for feedback on your presentation. This can include the design and layout of your presentation as well as how you are presenting it.
Bonus Tip: make sure you know How to hide desktop icons for presentations when using Mac. This is important because they will appear on your screen, and sudden push notifications and active apps can break your concentration. You can check out this blog post - https://setapp.com/how-to/hide-icons-on-mac for instructions on how to do it.
Now let's come back to the feedback part. Presenting it in front of your teammate will give you the feel of the audience, and when they respond to your presentation, you will be able to understand the audience's mindset. Add a little humor in between if you think it will match with what you are presenting. Your teammates can guide you regarding where you are lacking, which will help you correct the presentation on time.
Nail Down the Logistics
In case you are the one who needs to book a conference room, then do figure out the tech in the room. Know for how long it is going to take, and should you leave some time for questions?
To get the answer to all these questions, you need to dial people in and get the answers. Make sure you even book the conference room a day before so that you get some time to practice in the actual setting.
Select an Outfit for Yourself
This may look funny, but the process of selecting an outfit will give you some time to take a break from all that stress. Make sure when you are choosing one, it should not be formal, mainly if your office is not at all formal. Pick something that boosts your confidence and makes you feel more you. This is important because the more minor things you have to sort out things that morning, the more you will focus on the presentation.
Make Final Edits to Your Slides
From the design and speaking perspective, you have received a lot of feedback. Now is the time to edit the slides as per the feedback and make them look more presentable. After editing the last slide, make sure you take that editor’s pen and start scrutinizing it to make the final changes.
And make sure that final means final. Don’t tweak your presentation too much; otherwise, you will get confused when it is time to showcase the masterpiece.
Presenting any information about your opinion is not at all easy. People start shaking when they have to face the audience. But when you follow a pattern and pre-plan in advance, then you get a lot of time to practice and rectify the errors. This strategy will boost your confidence and will make your present efficient.