Presentations and Public Speaking in English
A presentation is a formal talk to on
Can you name the 3 most imp
Number 1 is . . . Preparation
Number 2 is . . . Preparation!
Number 3 is . . . Preparation!!
Preparation is everything!
With good preparation and planning you will be totally confident and less nervous. And your audience will feel your confidence. Your audience, too, will be confident. They will be confident in you. And this will give you control. Control of your audience and of your presentation. With control, you will be in charge and your audience will listen positively to your message.
Before you start to prepare a presentation, you should ask yourself: "Why am I making this presentation?" Do you need to inform, to persuade, to train or to sell? Your objective should be clear in your mind. If it is not clear in your mind, it cannot possibly be clear to your audience.
"Who am I making this presentation to?" Sometimes this will be obvious, but not always. You should try to inform yourself. How many people? Who are they? Business people? Professional people? Political people? Experts or non-experts? Will it be a small, intimate group of 4 colleagues or a large gathering of 400 competitors? How much do they know already and what will they expect from you?
"Where am I making this presentation?" In a small hotel meeting-room or a large conference hall? What facilities and equipment are available? What are the seating arrangements?
Time and length
"When am I making this presentation and how long will it be?" Will it be 5 minutes or 1 hour? Just before lunch, when your audience will be hungry, or just after lunch, when your audience will be sleepy?
How should I make this presentation?" What approach should you use? Formal or informal? Lots of visual aids or on
"What should I say?" Now you must decide exactly what you want to say. First, you should brainstorm your ideas. You will no doubt discover many ideas that you want to include in your presentation. But you must be selective. You should include on
A well organised presentation with a clear structure is easier for the audience to follow. It is therefore more effective. You should organise the points you wish to make in a logical order. Most presentations are organised in three parts, followed by questions:
Beginning Short introduction welcome your audience
introduce your subject
explain the structure of your presentation
explain rules for questions
Middle Body of presentation present the subject itself
End Short conclusion summarise your presentation
thank your audience
Questions and Answers
When you give your presentation, you should be - or appear to be - as spontaneous as possible. You should not read your presentation! You should be so familiar with your subject and with the information that you want to deliver that you do not need to read a text. Reading a text is boring! Reading a text will make your audience go to sleep! So if you don t have a text to read, how can you remember to say everything you need to say? With notes. You can create your own system of notes. Some people make notes on small, A6 cards. Some people write down just the title of each section of their talk. Some people write down keywords to remind them. The notes will give you confidence, but because you will have prepared your presentation fully, you may not even need them!
Rehearsal is a vital part of preparation. You should leave time to practise your presentation two or three times. This will have the following benefits:
you will become more familiar with what you want to say
you will identify weaknesses in your presentation
you will be able to practise difficult pronunciations
you will be able to check the time that your presentation takes and make any necessary modifications
So prepare, prepare, prepare! Prepare everything: words, visual aids, timing, equipment. Rehearse your presentation several times and time it. Is it the right length? Are you completely familiar with all your illustrations? Are they in the right order? Do you know who the audience is? How many people? How will you answer difficult questions? Do you know the room? Are you confident about the equipment? When you have answered all these questions, you will be a confident, enthusiastic presenter ready to communicate the subject of your presentation to an eager audience.
Easily your most imp
it can be used in daylight
the user can face the audience
the user can write or draw directly on the transparency while in use
The whiteboard (more rarely blackboard or greenboard) is a useful device for spontaneous writing - as in brainstorming, for example. For prepared material, the OHP might be more suitable. The duster is used for cleaning the whiteboard. It is essential that the duster be clean to start with. You may consider carrying your own duster just in case. Markers are used for writing on the whiteboard (delible - you can remove the ink) or flipchart (indelible - you cannot remove the ink). They are usually available in blue, red, black and green. Again, it s a good idea to carry a spare set of markers in case you are given some used on
Delivery refers to the way in which you actually deliver or perform or give your presentation. Delivery is a vital aspect of all presentations. Delivery is at least as imp
Most speakers are a little nervous at the beginning of a presentation. So it is normal if you are nervous. The answer is to pay special attention to the beginning of your presentation. First impressions count. This is the time when you establish a rapport with your audience. During this time, try to speak slowly and calmly. You should perhaps learn your introduction by heart. After a few moments, you will relax and gain confidence.
You need to build a warm and friendly relationship with your audience. Enthusiasm is contagious. If you are enthusiastic your audience will be enthusiastic too. And be careful to establish eye contact with each member of your audience. Each person should feel that you are speaking directly to him or her. This means that you must look at each person in turn - in as natural a way as possible. This will also give you the opportunity to detect signs of boredom, disinterest or even disagreement, allowing you to modify your presentation as appropriate.
Your objective is to communicate!
What you do not say is at least as imp
Because English is so widely used around the world, it is quite possible that many members of your audience will not be native English-speakers. In other words, they will not have an Anglo-Saxon culture. Even within the Anglo-Saxon world, there are many differences in culture. If we hypothetically imagine a German working for an Israeli company making a presentation in English to a Japanese audience in Korea, we can see that there are even more possibilities for cultural misunderstanding. You should try to learn about any particular cultural matters that may affect your audience. This is on
It is, of course, imp
speed: you can speak at normal speed, you can speak faster, you can speak more slowly - and you can stop completely! You can pause. This is a very good technique for gaining your audience s attention.
intonation: you can change the pitch of your voice. You can speak in a high tone. You can speak in a low tone.
volume: you can speak at normal volume, you can speak loudly and you can speak quietly.