Presenting in front of a large audience can be a nerve wrecking event for many people. Below are some tips to present better and appear more confident in front of a large crowd?
Establish your credibility the moment you start your presentation
Your audience will only listen to you if they know who you are, what you do and give your audience a reason why they should listen to you.
Speakers without experience usually speak fast during their presentations. Remind yourself to slow down and have pauses in between your speech.
Let your audience know the purpose or aim of your presentation from the start
Do not let your audience second guess what is your presentation about. Let them know from the onset what is your aim or goal of your presentation.
Use of materials to support what you are presenting
It is good to have supporting materials (facts and figures) from research, institutions or authority figures to establish credibility in what you have said.
Eye contact with your audience is imperative. Try to match your eye contact with everyone in the room as this wil make them feel important and continue to remain attentive and supportive on what you are presenting.
Project Your Voice
Nothing can be worst than a presentation you can’t hear. If the room is big, make sure you use a microphone. Many speakers make the mistake of insisting that they use their natural voice in a big room. Projecting your voice doesn’t mean yelling, but rather standing up straight and letting your voice resonate on the air in your lungs rather than in the throat to produce a clearer sound.
Do not use or minimise fillers
Moments quite often happen when the speaker is temporarily ‘lost’ and need to use fillers like ‘um,’ ‘ah,’ or ‘you know’? Instead of doing so, replace the fillers with a pause. The pause may seem a bit strange, but the strange thing is the audience will usually not notice it.
Be familiar with the training room equipment and do not get caught up with hooking up the powerpoint and/or projector when participants are waiting for you to speak. Come early, run through your slideshow, dry run your presentation and make sure there won’t be any glitches. Preparation is one of the most crucial tips in helping you to remove your speaking anxiety.
Rehearse your speech as many times as you can before the event. Better still, join Toastmasters and practice your speaking skills regularly in front of a large audience. Not only you will have fun, you will also pick up tips along the way to make yourself a better speaker and build your confidence and competence when you need to approach the stage.
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