Do you get the shakes, the queasies, or the heebie-jeebies when it’s time to get in front of people and give a presentation? If so, you are not alone. In fact, there’s a good chance that “stage fright” is way up there on the list of most people’s fears – somewhere between “heights” and “creepy crawly things.”
The thing is, no matter much you hate (or fear) giving presentations, there are probably times when you just have to do it. Professionals in a variety of job fields routinely give presentations of some sort, whether they’re in business, social work, medicine, or university teaching. Seriously, even poets – you know, the shy, reclusive types – end up having to give public readings on book tours and such.
Public speaking can be a challenge for most people. To help you keep calm and focused during an important presentation, you can call on mindfulness as a tool. “Mindfulness” is a fancy word for paying deep attention to this very moment, rather than dwelling on the past or fretting about the future.
Here are the top three mindfulness techniques that can turn you into a confident speaker. They won’t cost you anything, and you can do them almost anywhere (although a little privacy is helpful).
Most people have a hard time with public speaking, due to stage fright or worries about being seen as incompetent. Women presenters tend to carry even more baggage into their presentations, thanks to generations of cultural messages about being “ladylike.”
Here are three of the most common ways that women allow this cultural baggage to prevent them from making powerful, effective presentations. (Note: These mistakes are commonly seen in women presenters, but plenty of men make them, too. Readers of any gender might find helpful tips here.) Read more
What is it about PowerPoint that turns intelligent and articulate people into droning robots? We’ve all been there—trapped in a deadly dull presentation where a guy in a suit is reading his PowerPoint slides aloud to the audience, bullet point by painful bullet point.
If you want to avoid being “that guy,” there’s one thing—and only one thing—that you need to know.
The secret to avoiding this presentation-killing mistake is this: Put the focus on the audience, where it belongs. Read more
The human brain is not designed for bullet points.
Let’s face it, bullet points are boring—and they’re the number-one reason that PowerPoint audiences lose interest in your presentations.
A better strategy is to use compelling visual aids instead of bulleted lists. Here’s the good news: PowerPoint 2013 has a great feature called SmartArt that can help you transform those boring bullet points into a visual aid. Read more
Ever wished that you could learn just one guaranteed, like-magic trick for wowing an audience, every single time?
You’re in luck—this one trick does exist. It combines three key strategies that work together to produce an unforgettable presentation that gets results.
Ready to get the lowdown on masterful presenting? Read on…
We’ve all been subjected to mind-numbingly boring PowerPoint presentations. In fact, so-called “Death by PowerPoint” is so common, one group of psychologists even conducted a study on the key psychological flaws of ineffective PowerPoints.
One interesting finding of that study: most people can’t even pinpoint what it is that makes a presentation a bad one – they just know a bad presentation when they see it. The researchers concluded that presenters in any field could use some training in psychological factors that influence presentation effectiveness.
Want to create a great PowerPoint presentation? Streamlining your content should be your top priority, but you can also rely on built-in PowerPoint tricks to make your slide design sizzle.
Keep reading for five essential PowerPoint tricks that will make your presentation memorable.
You have probably sat through more than one poor PowerPoint presentation – the kind where you start checking your emails or texting someone (anyone!) just to keep yourself awake.
When it’s your turn to be the presenter, the last thing you want to do is bore your audience to tears. So the big question becomes, “How can I make a good PowerPoint presentation??” Read more
It’s a debate that’s been brewing since PowerPoint was born (around 1987, that is). Is PowerPoint a better presentation tool than the old-fashioned flip chart?
The answer to the flip-chart versus PowerPoint question may depend on the audience type and what you’re trying to convey. A flip-chart could be the obvious winner in a small group or a low-tech environment. (Wilderness retreat, anyone?) On the other hand, PowerPoint may be the visual aid of choice when you need to convey a lot of information to a very large crowd.
In an important presentation, the very worst thing you can do is overload your PowerPoint slides with text—and then read the slides to the audience.
Why would a presenter do this to his or her audience? Usually, it’s based on fear. If you don’t know your material thoroughly inside and out, or if you’re expecting difficult questions from your audience, then you might be tempted to dump every possible piece of data onto your slides so you can access it easily.
Fortunately, there’s a tool built into PowerPoint 2013 that will prevent you from committing this deadly presentation sin. It’s called Presenter View.