Now once you have prepared and rehearsed your content, the day comes.. yes yes your day. You will be the star of the evening. But let me tell you very clearly, preparation and presentation are two completely different things. No one cares about how much preparation have you done. No one will ever give damn about how hard you worked on your research. People (audience ) only see what are you presenting, how you presenting.
HARDWORK V/S SMART PRESENTATION
Unfortunately If you fail to be a star of the evening. There wont be a single person to consider your hard work. I know you definitely don’t want this. So please make sure to present well. You deserve to be a star presenter. I will help you to look confident and get all the attention on your content. Read and execute these points.
1. Clothe color contrast
I am sure you don’t want to blend into the backdrop. Try to go to the venue well ahead of time to know that which color of backdrop will be used on stage, so that you wear exactly opposite of that color. If you cant find out the backdrop colour beforehand, bring multiple outfit choices. suppose the backdrop is black in colour then consider wearing something light.
If the backdrop is light in color you must wear something dark , So that you are completely visible to the audience.
2. Attention on content not on you
You want to wear something with visual interest that is fine, but not so much that it detracts people from your presentation. Suppose after you are done with your speech every one is applauding and when you ask about feedback they just don’t remember what you spoke.
Would you like that? Would that be a happy part for you? I don’t think so. So try wearing something decent which shows your personality and it should be relevant to the event. Don’t wear something very funky. Stick to basic accessories.
3. Don’t look like audience
Consider dressing one level up from your audience. Psychology says we only listen to them who look superior to us, same applies to your audience. If you look one of them why will they care about the knowledge you have, you must look superior to them so that they accept your opinion and your knowledge within respect.
If you think your audience will wear casual then you must consider wearing business casual.
4. Comfort is important
You might be walking around on stage and you should not look uncomfortable in what you are wearing.
You should avoid high heels, tight pants. Think about preventing sweaty underarms as you select your outfit. Even if you look good in uncomfortable clothes it will show on stage.
Never try to fake. Personality matters a lot and it doesn’t only depend on good clothes but also comfort factor.
5. Wear make-up
Applying makeup depends on type of presentation. Stage makeup should always be dark than what you wear normally. For males and females both use foundation and setting powder. Under the light you will look very pale so consider applying colors like blush and contour. Make your eyes look open by applying liner.
In the event, camera might be used. in few shots you will be captured closely. So your makeup should be on point. Don’t overdo it. But don’t ignore also
6. Entry – the first impression
A great entry will define how your audience will react. Will they take you seriously? Or they will start checking their mobile phones. Will they listen to your experience or they will think you are just bluffing around. Will they want you to continue Or they will wish you to end the boring presentation. Yesss all this reaction and audience’s behavior depends on your entry. You must have heard that first impression is last impression, though I don’t agree, because sometimes people change the game in the ending. buttttt yes first impression is really very powerful impression. And I am sure you don’t want to take a chance. Entry = first impression .
When you walk to the stage with that confident and relaxed body language your aura should speak. Darling you are going to grab the eyeballs. How? Let me tell you. Walk to the center of the stage with good posture, head held high. Once you reach the center point, stop, look and smile. Look around the room look into the eyes of the audience.
Always remember, a relaxed open face and body tells your audience that you are confident and very sure about the message you going to talk about. We have already talked about outfit selection and now we know how to make a good entry. Trust me if you carry out both these factors perfectly you are going to give an amazing first impression.
7. Effective opening
Opening of the presentation should be interesting enough to leave the audience waiting for the main message. Always remember, opening often determines how long the audience will
“tune in” to your presentation. If you bore your audience right from the start there is no chance that your message will be effectively get across.
How do you effectively open the speech or presentation to prevent this from happening?
- Quote – opening with a relevant quote Can help set the tone for rest of your speech. You can google few quotes related to your topic, Or if you are interested in writing then you yourself can write amazing shayaris, quotations, gazal or anything that you think is suitable.
If your speech is about country and civilization then you can consider Patriotic quotes. If its for motivation you can consider any famous goal setting line. Same way for every topic there is different quote.
- Question – immediately drawing your audience into your speech that’s what we all want. In this scenario a question can make wonders. Asking a “what if” question can make your audience suddenly follow your thought process and they will definitely start imagining. For example – what would happen if we say what was on our minds all day every day.
You can also ask a rhetorical or a literal question. When someone is posed with a question whether a answer is called for or not that person intitutively answers. For example – who wouldn’t want to live in exotic islands.
- Statistic – use a powerful, effective, personalized statistic that will resonate with audience to get your message right away. Let me tell you a secret my darling reader, statistic sounds very boring but if used in right situation you will see that nothing can be a better option to trigger the audience’s emotional appeal.
For example – in this room 90% of us are going to……….
- Story – you can use any relevant story in the beginning of speech to let your audience know what your message is going to be. Story is really a good way to make people understand a particular concept. You must have heard messages like a friend in need is a friend indeed or greed is bad anything of that sort. Every message has a back story. This is the reason why saints and gurus tell stories and enlighten people. You can apply the same method you can start with a success story or a failure story and then make people understand about your perspective and opinion about the concept.
8. Sound superior
People listen and execute every word of a person who sound superior. As I mentioned in above points that you should not look one of your audience you should look superior than them, more knowledgeable, more confident. Same applies on your talk. You can include any personal experience in your speech to show that your presentation is not based on bookish theory but your own real life experience. It will give them a reason to trust on what message you delivering. Always remember, personalization is best way to connect. When you share about your struggles, your failures, challenges that you faced, your success you become a speaker who can connect to audience emotionally. People will execute your points effectively because now they respect you and your journey.
9. Nonverbal communication – magic
Oh so now you must be thinking, that you looking good, you planned your effective opening and you connecting to people with your personal story, so your work is done. Right? Darling let me tell you a fact” CONTENT MAKES YOUR SPEECH, BAD DELIVERY BREAKS
YOUR SPEECH “effective communication consists of two factors first is verbal and second is non-verbal. Both the factors are equally important. Verbal communication includes your words and nonverbal communication includes facial expression, tone and pitch of the voice, your gestures. Trust me your words need to coordinate with your expressions and gestures. Imagine how awkward it will look if you crack a joke with serious facial expression, or you are singing national anthem with blushing cheeks. How bad it will sound if I am talking about confidence and continuously looking down.
I hope you understand how important it is to involve right kind of expression and gestures to your presentation. How you going to do it? ..
- Power pose – : 1)stand straight with your shoulders back and feet shoulder width apart.
- Imagine your shoulders opening up from one another so that they rest centrally.
- Place your hands either side of body so that you can easily make gestures when needed.
- face the audience as much as possible. If you are in a large room, tilt your whole body towards different parts of audience so that everyone feels involved.
- Eye contact -: 1) when talking to large number of people maintain eye contact with one audience member for four seconds before moving to next audience member.
- make eye contact in z formation, make sure you don’t repeat that z formation with same members.
- in one-on-one setting, maintain eye contact for 9 to 10 seconds, and break away to save yourself from coming across as intense person, the other person should not think that you are staring. Same applies when some audience member is asking a question.
- Hand gestures -: 1) begin in a neutral position with your hands either side of your body, so that your hand gestures flow smoothly.
- don’t overdo it.
- use emotional gestures to communicate feelings.
- use symbolic gestures to address numbers and position.
- Movement -: 1) don’t pace around the stage in every 30 secs, this is distracting to your audience.
- wait at least for 3 to 5 minutes before taking the next move on stage.
- move towards the audience while making an important point or answering questions.
- avoid turning your back towards audience while moving on stage.
10. Powerful ending
End your speech with an attitude not a platitude.
Well you can end your speech with a thank you too. But my darling reader, I would suggest you to end your speech with a bang. Well beginning and ending of speech depends upon the topic. I personally feel thank you is not effective, its very dull.
You can end your speech with some statement or quote which provides relevant value. also ask for feedback. You can promote yourself with word of mouth strategy.
Always remember feedback is important for improvement, and also it will make your audience feel valued.