Presentation planning form

by ltconsulting on July 17, 2011

Our presentation courses are planned to significantly improve presentation skills to allow delegates of all levels to be able to make powerful presentations.  The presentation seminars that we provide are packed full of presentation tips and techniques that demonstrate strategies which will show delegates how to reduce nerves in presentations and to allow them to present confidently when presenting to clients or colleagues. Our presentation skills workshops are designed not just to show delegates how to make a simple presentation: they are designed to show delegates how to create a successful presentation also maximising the applications of PowerPoint to make great presentationsPresentation training will allow delegates to build on their presenting skills; make better presentations; enjoy making presentations and teach delegates how to present successfully.  Delegates who have taken our Presentation Courses have expressed how much they enjoyed the variety in our presentation skills training and now feel confident to present in any situation.

Startling Statistics

One of the best ways to grab an audience’s attention at the start of a presentation is to deliver a startling statistic or fact. These need to be relevant to the presentation topic and back-up the point a presenter is trying to make. Some of the best sources for statistics are Sunday newspapers. Have a guess at filling in the answers to the statistics below. They were taken from the Observer newspaper on 2nd February 2003. The answers to these are at the bottom of this page.

In 1997 US citizens spent $……… billion on soft drinks.

One in ………. US citizens will visit a fast food restaurant in any given day.

In the UK the average teenager consumes ………litres of soft drink per year.

In the UK ……….. cars are left abandoned every year.

There are over …………….. million unwanted mobile phones in the UK

Viagra has a worldwide market worth of $……. billion.

Eskimos have over ………….. different words for water.

The makes of car most likely to break down in the UK are ………….. and least likely are ………………

Children in the UK receive an average of £ per week pocket money.

How to create a powerful opening

The purpose of an opening or introduction is to capture your audience’s attention and keep it. You have three objectives to accomplish:

  1. Make the audience sit up and listen to your presentation
  2. Introduce the subject of your presentation
  3. Establish your credibility quickly

Vital ingredients of an effective opening

  • Attention-grabbing statements
  • Key points highlighting the topic
  • Benefits to the audience (why should they listen to you?)

Here are some things you could include in your introduction to make it interesting

  • Quotations
  • Rhetorical questions
  • Interesting facts
  • Relevant statistics
  • Bold statements
  • Current events
  • Stories and anecdotes

Here are some examples of opening statements for the following topic:

Customer service is essential to the success of any organisation

“Recent studies by the University of Cardiff has highlighted that organisations who deliver high customer service have a 25% higher staff retention rate.”

“Congratulations are in order. Our new customer satisfaction programme has resulted in a 17% reduction in customer complaints and a 32% reduction in product returns. Well done!”

“I recently read ‘In search of excellence’ by Tom Peters. He researched the most successful companies in the US and found the only consistent factor amongst them was a committed effort by every member of staff to ensure all customers were satisfied when doing business with their organisation. Most companies only live for 49 years. Are we doing enough to ensure we live longer?”

Presentation planning

One of the biggest fears for presenters is ensuring that nothing is forgotten: It is not only content, but the logistics of giving a successful presentation need a keen eye and an attention to small details. The next two sections contain forms that both new and experienced presenters will find invaluable.

Presentation planning form

The objective of my talk is…..

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Who am I talking to? ………………………….………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

What does the audience need/want to hear?…………….…………………………..…………………………………………………………..…………………………..

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Opening words? (How am I going to get their interest?)

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Prevent objections? (What objections will there be. How will I identify, acknowledge, handle, answer them?)

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Close? (How will I end my talk?)

by summarising? …………………………………………………………………………….………..

by a quote, statistic etc? …………………………………………………………………………….

by directly asking for action? …………………………………………………………………………

by proposing/recommending?…………………………………………………………………………

by suggesting alternatives?……………………………………………………………………………

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Remember to:

  • smile – you may feel nervous but help you to look confident
  • keep eye contact with your audience
  • start well, get better as you end
  • end positively on a high note
  • write your talk as a check list with bullet points
  • keep your visual aids simple but effective
  • stand still and avoid distractions

A General Checklist For Making Presentations

  • What sort of audience do you expect? Numbers…………….
  • Type…………………
  • Date of the meeting itself
  • of rehearsals
  • of preliminary discussions
  • When must your cue cards be ready
  • By when are the handouts required
  • Visual aid details for preparation
  • Practical arrangements
  • Room(s) booked
  • Laptop and computer projector
  • Slide Projector
  • Overhead Projector
  • Different screens
  • Flip charts
  • Paper for Flip Charts
  • Pens for flip charts
  • Pens for Overhead Projector
  • Blackboard/white board
  • Chalks/Felt pens
  • Have we asked what other speakers may require?
  • Room layout agreed
  • Chairs, tables in place
  • Notepads, pencils, ball points, water, glasses, programme of the day, handouts, notes
  • Equipment: microphones and loud speakers tape recorder, video equipment, camera, TV monitor play back recorder (VCR) is this compatible? Cables long enough?
  • Lighting adequate? Controllable, by whom? Can the room be darkened?
  • Ventilation, air conditioning working? Noisy? Comfortable?
  • Coffee breaks, lunches, accommodation for delegates/for speakers

Delivering the Presentation: Your Visual Image.

Your voice never conveys your whole message, nor does your choice of words. A critical part of your presentation success is your visual image: your posture, eye contact, facial expressions, head movements, gestures and dress.

Three parts to a professional image

  1. Sound like a professional
  2. Speak like a professional
  3. Look like a professional

Avoiding distractions in your presentation is essential. Many times I have attended presentations where the presenter had annoying or distracting mannerisms that took my attention away from the ‘message’ and had me concentrating more on the ‘messenger’. Here are some examples:

  • Swaying or rocking motion
  • Pacing too much
  • Dress not appropriate to the situation
  • Thumping or tapping on lectern or flipchart
  • Staring at notes, floor or ceiling
  • Tugging at ear
  • Jingling coins in pocket
  • Pointing finger at audience
  • Slouching or slumped shoulders
  • Clinging for life to the lectern

Body Language Tips

  • The best way to eliminate negative body language is to be aware of what we do. We should try to be conscious at all times of using positive body language.
  • It helps to practise body language.
  • For example, practise your stance. Stand with your feet less than shoulder width apart. Don’t lean into the audience, but don’t turn your body away either.
  • Use an open posture. Stand upright and not slouched. Keep your shoulders back but keep them relaxed. Don’t fold your arms across your body, or put your hands across your face. Never put your hands in your pockets.
  • Make positive eye-contact. Keep regular eye-contact with the audience, but don’t stare at any one individual.
  • Practise smiling and using friendly expressions. Get a happy medium – you don’t want to scowl or look too serious, but you don’t want to look inane either.
  • Use open gestures. Hand gestures should be made with up-turned open palms.
  • Make sure your gestures, movements or facial expressions are natural. Nerves can make us exaggerate our body language which creates the wrong effect.
  • If you can, take the opportunity to see yourself perform on video. This is a useful way of getting a critical look at the body language you are using and practise improvements. Alternatively, practise in front of a mirror or in front of a trusted friend.

Body language – some simple rules

  • easy eye contact across the whole audience
  • relaxed posture
  • head up but not tilted at an angle
  • face the audience
  • arms comfortable
  • open gestures with arms/hands
  • smile/friendly expression

Answers to Startling Statistics

In 1997 US citizens spent $200 billion on soft drinks.

One in four US citizens will visit a fast food restaurant in any given day.

In the UK the average teenager consumes 200 litres of soft drink per year.

In the UK 250,000 cars are left abandoned every year.

There are over 100 million unwanted mobile phones in the UK.

Viagra has a worldwide market worth of $1.5 billion.

Eskimos have over 17 different words for water.

The makes of car most likely to break down in the UK are Jaguars and least likely are Hondas.

Children in the UK receive an average of £6 per week pocket money

Excellent presentation skills give you a platform to demonstrate your sales skills, leadership qualities, communication skills, influencing abilities and promotion potential. Our objective over the two days is to teach you the skills and techniques that will give you both the confidence and competence to enjoy making presentations in all situations. We will be giving action points to sharpen your image; reduce nerves; allow you to appear both confident and competent and increase your credibility in the eyes of colleagues and clients.

PowerPoint presentation skills, Advanced Presentation skills and Presentation skills are three of the courses trained by Total Success Training, a training consultancy specialising in communication training and management skills in London and throughout the UK. Other related courses include sales presentation skills, training the trainer, assertiveness skills, selling skills, negotiation skills and communication skills for managers. Click here if you need more information regarding presentation skills course information or contact Total Success who will be delighted to talk to you via e-mail.

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