Monday, March 3, 2014

Presentation Skills

After being in corporate world for 5 years, I know for sure that being presentable and presentation skills are of utmost importance.

This is not limited to power point presentation. Presentation skills cover presenting yourself to your team mates, manager, client. It also involves presenting your documents, plans, review comments to the audience.

I learned its importance the hard way :(

Imagine, I was presenting one document to client on projector. This document was prepared jointly by my colleague and myself. Both the parts were independent of each other and we had to present them individually (however, in a single document). Booom.... somehow my colleague was absent on the presentation day and I was supposed to present the entire document. Although, I could explain the contents of my friend, QA session for his section was almost Greek to me. To top it, I was sitting like a potato on the chair and delivering my contents.

I learned 2 things from this episode:
  • You have to be sure in and out of each section of the document that you are presenting
  • You simply cannot give presentation sitting at one place. That was so monotonous and stupid of me
Following are few things which I then eventually learned about presentation. I hope these things help each one of us to be better at presentation

  1. Always make sure you dress as per the occasion. Casuals on Friday on usual day is perfect. However, casuals on Friday when there would be demo or client meeting would be inappropriate. At max, you can wear business casuals like cotton trousers, half shirts, collar tshirts, etc.. Sandals would be strict no in such meetings.
  2. At client location, dress as the clients would do. When in Rome, do as the Romans do.
  3. Be 100% acquainted with the contents of material you would be presenting.
  4. Try to know the rooms, projector and mic arrangements before hand. This would save time and last minute embarrassment
  5. I have to improve on my standing position. I do not stand erect. I tend to shift my weight from one leg to another and back to the first one. Avoid this.
  6. Knowing level of understanding of audience is also good practice. Example: Senior managers would hardly be interested in technical architecture and technical know hows. They are more interested in solution being found.
  7. Ignore designations while presentations. You are presenting and so you are the expert.
  8. Few body language disasters: holding too many things in your hand (like pen, marker, duster, book, laser, etc) and do circus with them. Do not touch belt, nose, hairs, lips unnecessarily.
  9. Finally, open up. Be energetic, sound humorous, praise someone, doubt them and engage them.
Let me know how did you find it and would it make any difference to you.


  1. Viren - bro overall its nice but i disagree with you on point no 2) No client want their service provider or vendor to be dressed like them and moreover its comfortability to every one example- If we dress like OMANIEs its not comfortable to us, our concentration might get distracted. rather it should ge Genral ( Formal Clean Shirt, Tie, Leather Shoes and a Trousers).
    To be precise on point no 3) further we can say we must have to less data on PPT and more to deliver in speech. One must have to prepare with atlist one example on points meantioned in PPT.

    If we are not sure about the word that we wanted to use please take a help of some one who knows better english than us or take help of google dictionary.

    Try to aviod long Sentences.

    1. Kaustubh - That Omanie example made me smile :) ....
      Yes, that would be true... but i was giving a general view.....
      Your both points are valid and true :-)

  2. One more thing i forget to ask you to include - Please check voice rechability and audiability right after we connected to call , if its conference call or Skypee Presentation.

    1. Yes, I forgot to add this... Now that you have commented on the same page itself, I need not edit my post :-)
      Thanks ....