Week 8 & 12 - Presentation skills
Above was the image that I presented quickly in the session. Because it was a extremely short presentation, I have to pick the most important elements of the image to talk about. In my opinion, it is necessary to let audience to know about where the image come from. So, I remember what I said was “This image is from a Taiwan photographer who called Rui, she’s good at capturing the special moments in everyday life that others may miss.”
Because it was my first presentation in front of the whole class, I was a bit shy and nervous when I was doing the presentation. But after it, I realized it was not that scary as I thought; I think if I practice more and get more experience, I will do better on my presentation skills.
In order to have a successful,convincing, inspiring, entertaining and effective presentation, presentation skills is very important. Even though I have a great idea, if I don’t have good presentation skill to make people listen and remember of what I shared, then everything is useless.
First thing to do is to have a careful planning and preparation before giving out a presentation; Pick a good topic, list all of the task, place in priority and have a clear structure to help audience to understand and build up the presentation easily; Then is time management, it is a very major element in a presentation, allocating the needed time. From ‘Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds’ by Carmine Gallo, there is a chapter ‘Stick to the 18-minute rule’. It is about the famous Ted talk, each TED talk is limited to 18 minutes, scientists are beginning to identify how long most people can pay attention before they tune out, and TED organizers reached the conclusion that 18 minutes works best.
Then is find relevant and interesting contents, as it is very important that the presentation can inspire people and get resonance from audience instead of put them to sleep. Therefore, a good research can help to identify what should include and what to exclude in the limited time of presentation. Also, provide examples to bring interest and improve understanding, and allow audience to have their imagination and assumption; provide links and references for audience to have a further sources of information.
Last but not least is have a good communication skills. Before the presentation, speaker should well-known of the purpose, there is nothing more important than this; what is it that need to communicate in the presentation and also the current knowledge level of the audience. Speaker should deliver something that is suitable for the participation of the audience. Other than that, speaker should also decides the most effective way to deliver the speech, add multi-sensory elements; present with pictures, models, sound or statistics to support the presentation. Also keep eye-contact with the audience in the presentation, as the eyes are the window to the soul; show confidence when speaking, as body language is the most important part in a speech.
TED is an excellent learning platform to learn presentation skills and also for brain storming. Like their mission: Ideas worth spreading. They believe passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and, ultimately, the world.
I found a TED talk delivered by Julian Treasure, “How to speak so that people want to listen”.
Below is the conclusion of what I learnt after I had listened to his talk.
There are four really powerful cornerstones, foundations, that can stand on to deliver powerful speech, the word is ‘Hail’.
- H, honesty, being true in what you say, being straight and clear.
- A, authenticity, just being yourself, standing in your own truth,
- I, integrity, being your word,actually doing what you say, and being somebody people can trust.
- L, love, wishing people well with love and honesty.
An amazing toolbox, skills which will increase the power of speaking.
- Register: Locate the voice, talk down to the chest with lower voices, people associate depth with power and with authority.
- Timbre: Everyone prefer voices which are rich, smooth, warm. Breathing, with posture, and with exercises can improve the timbre of voice.
- Prosody: Speak with tone instead of monotonic (all in one tone).
- Pace: The speed of talking; say something quickly to show excitement, speak slow to emphasize and silent to catch attention.
- Pitch: An indication of arousal in questioning with high pitch and low pitch will have different meaning.
- Volume: Speak in appropriate volume in different intention. Adjust the volume that is going to work on.
To conclude, practice makes perfect. I think practice is the most important thing to do before deliver a presentation. Nothing is impossible, as with good preparation, it won’t be a hard thing to do.