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The Art of Making Professional Presentations

Making Business PresentationsDoes the way you present imbue your audiences with confidence, or do they automatically begin to doubt your skill the instant they hear you speak informally or get an eyeful of your disorganized slideshows? It’s not necessarily what you say but, the way you say it and present it that matters.

Regardless what sphere of the business world you operate in, your mode of communication is the first thing that people focus on. While all business skills are important, making professional presentations is paramount in determining how your are viewed by others in your trade and how far your career path takes you.

Why Presentation Matters

Most humans have an inherent stubborn streak that resists change at some basic level. Even if everyone seemed like they were in complete agreement with your ideas during an informal discussion, they’ll certainly bring their apprehensions to bear in formal settings such as boardrooms.

This may be a simple psychological reality due to the fact that the presenter is doing all the talking while the listeners have to save their concerns until later. Nonetheless, it’s your task to overcome doubts and short attention spans, and you can’t rely on your ideas to do the job for you.

Choosing an Approach

Of course, there are many ways to present information, but not all methods are sufficiently professional or even effective. For instance, flashy slides and fonts that grab people’s attention via sheer visual impact also tend to make things harder to follow in the long run.

We’ve all seen presentations that could have toned down the text effects in favor of more relevant content, and the informal nature of some of these elements is decidedly out of place within client pitches and meetings with new partners.

On the other hand, presentations that are extremely dry are often so boring that it’s hard to keep people engaged. The secret lies in finding a happy middle ground that allows you to create a lasting impact.

Fortifying Your Skill Set

Don’t fool yourself into believing that your personal charisma or ability to get along with others will suffice for business skills training. Making professional presentations is a completely unique experience, and it requires you to reach far beyond the boundaries of your comfort zone. While you may be able to coast on charm and your trade-specific skills during one-on-one interactions, you’ll need to adapt your methodologies to communicate with groups.

Consider the fact that you’re effectively stepping into the role of a classroom teacher when you present things in front of a group. Here are three vitals steps you must take when making presentations:

  • Prepare your content for timely dissemination
  • Formulate responses/answers to anticipated questions
  • Organize and deliver information to accommodate unique learning styles and thought processes

If you can succeed at these deceptively complex concepts and give an effective presentation, you’ll find that your value increases dramatically. Of course, you’ll have to begin from somewhere, and it may be that specialized business skills training is the first step.

Ashford Global IT staff has trained major firms, startups and professionals. Their ability to teach others to do the same is uncontested, and they’re well-versed in imparting vital skills in a timely fashion. Learn how to make your next presentation more professional by contacting us today about training opportunities.


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Mary is a leading trainer in Microsoft® and Business Applications.

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