Being a great worker in an office setting isn’t about meeting deadlines and being able to crunch out the numbers, it’s about the innate social skills that you’ve had your entire life. If you remember your school days, you either loved or hated going up in front of the class for show-and-tell or to present a project. This usually doesn’t change once you enter the working world.
Presenting for your job with a business presentation is more or less the same, only the stakes are a little higher. Even though that sounds like there’s plenty of pressure riding on you, there are a lot of easy ways to nail your next presentation and wow the room, including your boss. Here are some top tips on creating a perfect business presentation.
First and foremost, you need to know what kind of audience you’re going to be talking to. If it’s management, you want to air a little more on the professional side. But, if you’re presenting to younger employees or it’s a more casual affair, then you can kind of bend the rules and be a little less formal to really connect with them. It’s good to know who you’re talking to so you can cater your approach better.
You’ll likely be presenting a slideshow as per the basics of a business presentation, but that doesn’t mean it has to be bland. Using the right templates with diverse color themes and different style options is the first step, but you also want to be conscious of the content. Bullet points are better than big blocks of text because people don’t want to read lecture slides in a presentation. Cue cards are great so you can talk about reference points on the slides. Additionally, include visual aids like photos or videos to keep people engaged.
Along with an attractive and aesthetically pleasing slideshow, you want to make sure that you have interactivity too. Getting the audience involved will heighten their energy which helps you actually get your points across. Standing up in front of the room and droning on for half an hour to an hour is boring. You’ve sat through presentations like that, so do more to keep them entertained and invested in what you’re saying. Use them for examples and to help you get your point across.
The majority of a business presentation revolves around your oratory skills. Speaking is key to winning over a room. You need to know how to speak at the right volume, how to keep them engaged with proper inflections, and to avoid stammering or saying “um” too much. Practice this skill over and over and over again until it comes off as natural. This can help turn even a bad presentation into a good one if you can talk to the audience well.
It’s also good to write down answers to questions you expect to get. Practicing your answers to these questions will make it really easy to help navigate the Q&A section. This also helps you come across as very knowledgeable. The hardest thing to remember is that you will likely get some unusual questions, but preparing your material will allow you to hopefully figure out the proper responses without stumbling too much. You don’t need to prepare for everything, but you do need to know what you’re talking about.
This goes back to the part about speaking skills. If you can speak passionately, you can win a crowd over. Being passionate isn’t just about the technical parts of your presentation like the slideshows, the material, the graphs, or whatever it is you’re showing people. And, it’s not just about how well you can engage in public speaking. It’s about reading the room and talking like storytelling and you’re captivating the crowd. You also want to spend time researching what it is that you’re going to be presenting so that you can actually get a good grasp of what it is so you can engage the crowd.
There are all kinds of ways to impress at your job. Showing up on time, dressing well, getting work done quickly, all of these are good, but one skill is the ability to do a bang-up job on a business presentation. Using these tips, you’ll be sure to win over the room next time you have to do a presentation.