Friday, 31 January 2014

Top Tips for Preparing for your Presentation

Presentations are horrible, aren't they? You stand at the front of a room full of people gawping at you with open mouths, struggling to get your words out, wondering why on earth you've been put through this completely unnecessary ordeal.

Yep, no-one likes doing them. We've established that. But presentations definitely are important, and (depending on the career you choose) are likely to form a significant part of your future working life. Whether you end up working in advertising, law, TV or accountancy, it is highly probable that you will be required to give or assist with a presentation on a semi-regular basis.

Think of doing a presentation as a small child being asked to eat up their green vegetables. It isn't fun, they don’t like it, but it's definitely good for them in the long run. And you never know, given enough time you may get a real taste for it!

With all this in mind, here are a few tips on giving the perfect presentation.

Practice makes perfect

While other commitments – namely society socials, nights out and napping – often mean assignments get finished within seconds of the deadline, try to avoid the last minute rush with presentations. Getting it done well before the deadline gives you plenty of time to practice and make amends.

Slow down

When all eyes in the room are on you, it’s tempting to rush through your meticulously prepared presentation with the intention of getting back to your seat as quickly as possible. However, speaking slowly gives you time to breathe and helps you stay calm. Speaking too fast is a common mistake which can impact on the quality of presentation and your grade.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

Asking for help is anything but a sign of weakness; on the contrary, it can leave you with a much stronger presentation and a great grade. If you’re struggling with the content or delivery of your presentation, ask more confident housemates to help you out or book an appointment with your tutor. Alternatively, look into companies such as Ivory Research which can provide the help you need to create a top notch presentation.

Enjoy it!

Yes, really – think about it, how often do you have the attention of everyone in the room, all hanging onto every word you say? Okay, so there may be the odd nap in progress as you present your work, but try to enjoy being in the limelight. Thinking this way might even boost your confidence.

That said, you don't have to enjoy giving a presentation – but you do need to recognise their importance and the amount of difference they can make to your degree. Take the necessary steps and make it one that counts.


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