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7 Things That Make Up The Best Presentation

7 Things That Make Up The Best Presentation

A presentation is a demo, or dialogue meant to inform, persuade, or construct good will. A presentation allows immediate interaction between all the participants like your clients, boss, management or colleagues. The success of a presentation is determined by the speaking skills, content selection, design of the presentation, self-confidence and many other things. A good presenter can attract the attention of the audience and forces them to take action.

I’ve written about having great presentations many times, but in this article I’ll discuss about the things that make up the best presentation.

1. Don’t deliver a speech.

You must be clear on the purpose of your presentation, don’t give a speech but always use a conversational tone while presenting. No one wants to listen to a boring presentation. Don’t just recite the information but deliver an engaging speech that connects with your audience. A best presentation demands more engagement and interaction. You have to provide specific knowledge to your audience that they can’t get anywhere else and deliver it in an interactive way.

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2. Get personal

Personalizing your speaking skills would allow your audience to perceive you as an individual, with a strong point of view. Generally, people respond to individuals who seem to speak as people. While giving a presentation, your objective should be engaging your audience, not to give a speech. Be self-confident and energetic to give the presentation in a conversational way. If your presentation failed to involve the audience, they will start to feel disconnected.

3. Use emotional appeals

Using emotional appeals in a presentation is one of the most effective ways to persuade an audience. The reason to use this tactic is; we all are driven by our feelings and thoughts, it is important to influence emotions and minds. Strong emotional appeals in a communication can help in changing attitudes and behaviors of the people. The emotions aren’t used to some reason, but they are always used to force an action. Best presentations are memorable. Use graphics, animations, images, and facts in your presentation to make it more understandable to your audience.

4. Telling Stories

The best speakers use stories and narratives to explain and strengthen the main points of the presentation. Stories are easier to remember and they make the presentation unique. People always tend to listen stories to perceive any information and hate lectures. Unlike facts and figures, stories speak to the heart, and a best presenter uses stories in his or her presentation to illustrate difficult points and to help people make an emotional connection to the message.

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5. Keep it simple yet attractive

Always try to keep the presentation simple, by examining the content on each slide. Make it attractive by building your presentation around the main idea and include related graphics and keep the formatting consistent. Identify the main three or four major points about your topic and illustrate them. The more you keep it simple the more easy your audience will perceive the information.

6. Use the 20/20 rule

Practice and time your presentation, to build more confidence and make a strong grip on it. Read your speech and watch your presentation at least 20 times or more. You should be familiar about next slide of the presentation and memorize your points to discuss the slide. Concise your presentation to 20 minutes or lesser. Practice your presentation to make sure you finish it within the allotted time, including questions at the end.

7. Use signposts

To make a presentation effective, attention-grabbing and easy to understand is to use signposts. ‘Signpost language’ is the words and phrases that a speaker use to guide the audience through the presentation. A good presenter usually uses a lot of signposts, which is usually fairly informal and relatively easy to understand.

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Here are some of the examples

To begin with, first of all, ‘secondly”, ‘finally’, ‘as you might know’, ‘that means’, ‘on the contrary’, ‘on the other side’, ‘moving on to’, ‘let us now turn to’, ‘furthermore’, ‘to sum up’, etc.

 

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Remember, a good presenter engages the audience and understands his topic. Use graphics, emotional appeal and signposts to reinforce your point. For your audience your slide show is not the presentation — you are the presentation.

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Tayyab Babar

Tayyab is a PR/Marketing consultant. He writes about work, productivity and tech tips at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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