Successful presentations that are powerful,
dynamic, innovative, and inspired the listeners to action, have one thing in common, they
are well organized. Everything the presenter used during their presentation was carefully
organized and checked and rechecked.
For you to obtain the same results, you must
pay the same attention to details. This includes checking and rechecking everything that
you will use during your presentation also:
- Handouts - Workbooks
- Overheads, Flip charts, Charts, Slides
- Audio/Visual equipment
The organizational details of your
presentation are "critical" to your "success." The first time you fail
to ensure that everything is organized . . . you will know it instantly and so will your
The instant that you discover something is out
place during your speech or presentation, commonly and more often than not, it forces you
to stop your presentation to correct them. Who suffers while you are quickly attempting to
correct the immediate problem? You do!
You start by making little excuses as you
ad-lib to kill time, while fumbling around looking for the right workbooks, charts, or
overhead transparency to use. Or discover that your 35 mm slides are in upside down or
backwards or out of sequence.
To further compound the problems you're
having, during all this, you start becoming a little bit more nervous and frustrated,
losing track of where you were in your presentation. Your confidence level suffers, and
your image as a skilled speaker, trainer, or presenter takes a big hit and suffers more.
Been there done that! . . . It has happened to
the best of us at one time or another. The point being, is do everything within your
power to prevent it from happening in the first place.
That's why it is so critically important to
you as a speaker, trainer, or presenter. After all, your image is on the line here,
as you stand in front of your audience. You want to project yourself as a skilled
professional with an authoritative source of knowledge, and being "organized" is
just another way of maintaining that credible image.
As you begin to develop and organize your
presentation, an important consideration to consider is it's format or outline.
I think it would safe to say, there must be a
1,000 ways to do a presentation plan. There also must be at least 10 different ways to
format each one of them. The point here is, there is a means to an end. The best
constructed presentation plan on paper will not make you a great presenter, nor will it
make your listeners motivated or retain the information your presenting, or for that
matter even like you. There is a whole lot more to being a good presenter than your
presentation format or outline.
Please, do not get wrapped up around a presentation plan format. This is merely a roadmap
for you to follow when presenting your information to your listeners, ensuring you
cover everything, and do it within your allotted time frame.
The contents and outline/format of your
presentation should be developed and written in a simple standard outline format. Using
this format will help you in organizing and the sequencing of everything occurring during
your presentation session in a logically flow of events, within the outline of the
presentation there are normally theses heading or titles and there sub-titles:
- Introduction (build interest, motivate, and
outlines purpose of presentation)
- Body (core of subject material or information)
- Closing statements (wrap-up, ending
Again, remember to check everything. I
mean everything that you have direct control over, handouts, flip charts, overheads,
charts and slides leave nothing unchecked. The only thing that you don't have direct
control over is your Audio/Visual support equipment. We will discuss how to deal
with those problems during the course.
To help you keep to track of where you are at
during your presentation, be sure to label and number each overhead transparency, chart,
or flip charts used. And also remember to make them large enough so that you can read them
clearly in less than perfect light conditions. It is also a good idea, if possible, to
write their number or name in the margin of your notes, lesson plan, presentation guide,
or whatever format you use. This will help you keep your presentation organized, and in
sequence, as you present it, and transition from one topic to the next, by telling you
what's coming up next.
Next let's go look at your Visual aids, go there
now or go back to the top! It's your choice!