Does today's market dictate your need for superior presentation skills?

In a word, "YES." Superior presentations skills help give you the needed edge in today’s market. Everyone needs to put their best foot forward when presenting business ideas or proposals. You may have the greatest product or service in the world but if it is not communicated in a positive way it could end up looking like and sounding like everyone else’s solution. You want to stand out and one way to differentiate yourself is to present professionally.

Here are some basics to make sure you stand out in the crowd:

1) Arrange to arrive early so you can be assured all media is working properly. Don’t wait until the last minute to set up. Be ready before the appointed time and welcome participants into the meeting space. Own the room. As others arrive on your "turf" it will be a confidence builder.

2) If you are using PowerPoint or Keynote, position your computer so the monitor faces you and you face the audience. You will be able to see your slides without turning your back to the audience, a big no-no.

3) Know your material! Don’t wing it. Reading your slides is a guaranteed way to lose the attention of your audience. Potential clients like their suppliers to be confident so remember: there is no such thing as too much practice. You are the presentation, not the slides.

4) For business meeting presentations, imagine a 4 foot square box around you and stay in this general area. Pacing back and forth indicates nervousness and a lack of self confidence. You may think your audience is paying attention because they are watching you. They are watching…just not listening.

5) Every slide does not have to be a list of bullets. Use graphics, photos and quotes to help support your message. There are lots of great sites out there to help you communicate the benefits of your solution. Some sites are free and some are pay as you go.

Large selection, not free, nominal charge or pay as you go:

Free:

Other resources:

  • www.quoteland.com - useful/motivational quotes
  • Smart Art Graphics on PowerPoint 2007 and 2010 - use graphics vs. bullets to communicate information
  • www.yousendit.com - send large files

"There are always three speeches, for every one you actually gave. The one you practiced, the one you gave, and the one you wish you gave." — Dale Carnegie

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