Not just public speaking

26 September 2008

Training options: Public Speaking, PowerPoint or Effective Presentations?

The two critical factors for presentation success are keeping audience attention high and communication the concepts and ideas we want to transmit.

To improve as presenters, a useful option is to enroll in a “public speaking” course.
This type of training teaches how to improve presentations working on gestures, posture, movement, ability to create an emotional link with the audience through empathic communication, fac expressions, voice, ability to involve the audience and handling critical situations.

I have participated in several courses of this type in the past and I found them very interesting and useful, especially when they included an analysis of a video recording of each participant.

Nevertheless, the communication effectiveness can be increased or dimished by the quality of the slides, normally done with PowerPoint, that are accompany the presentation. This aspect, unfortunately, is often overlooked and its importance underestimated. It’s not enough to attend a PowerPoint course to prepare a quality presentation.  PowerPoint defaults are often not the most appropriate options, especially for charts that represent data.

That is why I have developed a training program called “Effective Presentations” which focuses on qualitative and organizational aspects and the content of the slides. Styles and methods are varied and in constant development. Knowing them and being able to use thiem can help to build each one’s unique presention style.

A good presentation can also get extra help from the Internet. This is a topic I cover in my training courses: what tools, especially Web 2.0 ones, can enhance a presentation and make it accessible on the Internet?

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