The slides are up behind you. Your hands are getting sweaty. The audience is waiting for you to speak. You open your mouth, clear your throat, then completely forget what you were going to say. Oh crap how would I prepare presentation.

For the next few minutes you fumble through your presentation, praying to every god out there to get it over with. At one point the projector falls asleep. Not long after, so does half your audience.

So how do you avoid such a horror show? Simple! By properly preparing for your presentation. Here are four pointers to help you properly prepare for your presentation:

1 – Know what you’re saying inside and out

 

Did you know that Anthony Hopkins reads his scripts at least a hundred times before any performance? But the brain behind Hannibal Lecter doesn’t do this so he can perfectly repeat every line. It’s so he can understand the essence of what he’s saying, enabling him to improvise.

That sounds crazy, but it makes sense if you think of a script like a ladder. Every word in that script is a rung in that ladder. Miss a single word and you’ll struggle to stay balanced.

Instead of planning an entire script, prepare your key talking points. From there, all you have to do is practice elaborating on those points alongside your slides.

As you elaborate on your talking points, try making it as conversational as you can. Use everyday language, and inject your own personality into it. This will make you more comfortable with what you’re saying, and will help your audience engage with you.

2 – Triple-check your tech

 

Ever created a PowerPoint with custom fonts, only to have them convert to system fonts when you finally present? How about having your microphone cut out in the middle of a conference?

Technical hiccups can’t always be avoided, but they can be minimised. Here are a few things to check before you present:

  • Make sure your fonts, transitions, and so on export.
  • Ensure everything can be seen with the size and display of the screen.
  • Know how you can control the speed of the slides. If you can’t control them, consider a video.

 

3 – Don’t overdo your slides

 

We’ve written previously about how to simplify your PowerPoint presentations. The fact is, simplifying your slides is one of the easiest ways to prepare for your presentation. After all…

 

Prepare, 4 Ways to Prepare For Your Big Presentation

 

On top of that, elaborate slides can distract your audience. Without the attention of your audience, it’s easy to become nervous. The best way to prepare for this is to ensure your slides are simple.

As well as being a distraction, elaborate slides can become a crutch. After all, why elaborate on a few key points when you can just read blocks of text off each slide?

4 – Hire an onsite presentation designer

 

Think of how many years pre-presentation nerves take off your life. Now think how many years you’d get back by having someone take care of the whole thing for you.

By hiring an experienced presentation designer, you’ll have no reason to worry about tech not working on the day.

On top of that, collaborating with someone on your presentation keeps your work on track. They can even offer memorisation tips, and tricks to sway your audience.

To save yourself the stress of presentation preparation, speak to one of our professional presentation designers.

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