We all give presentations in our work and lives, whether it’s a one-on-one meeting with your boss or a lecture to a room full of people. Psychology Today offers a great guide to giving a successful presentation.
Photo by James Jordan.
I’m presenting a panel at SXSW this year, and the fact is, as is the case with many people, public speaking still rankles my nerves. Psychology professor Nancy Darling offers some great suggestions for giving a good presentation, and reminds us nervous speakers that it’s really not about us:
There are five main components to pulling together a good presentation:
- Choose a goal;
- Find a storyline that will help the group reach that goal;
- Develop a series of activities or a method of presentation that allows you to develop your storyline. Don’t let your media determine your storyline!
- Remember that your role is to facilitate the group reaching its shared goal. This is your primary responsibility!
- Remember that it’s not about you. All that matters is the experience of the other people in the room.
It’s easy to get caught up in nerves when you’re giving a presentation, but try to remember that the focus of the presentation is really on the information you’re trying to get across, not on you. If you’re confident in your information, let that boost the confidence you’ve got in your presentation.
Even if you’re not a nervous presenter, I’d recommend giving Darling’s guide a read through. It’s full of solid suggestions for improving your presentations.
I like to repost speaking tips that don’t come from obvious sources; this one combines SXSW, Lifehacker, and a psychology professor. Lifehacker also includes a link to its original source.