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6 tips to present like a professional

My friend, let’s call her Mary, was presenting to a group of 60 senior people.

The event was to be recorded and shared widely.

The topic of the panel was meaningful to her personally and professionally as she had led the program.

“Give me PRACTICAL tips, Louise!”

Speaking with impact to large or small groups is in the prepyou don’t do a massive workout without a warm-up first, do you?

So here they are: my 6 tips for communicating like a pro.

1. Do the design work

What do you want the audience to think, feel and do as a result of what you say? Reverse engineer your session from that.

2. Maximise your appeal

Some people gravitate to stories. Others like data and facts. Some need top lines only. And others luxuriate in detail.

Hit all of these notes and throw some analogies or metaphors in there too. You’ll light up everyone’s brain this way.

3. It’s about them, not you

“What if I stuff up?”

“What if they think I don’t know what I’m on about?”

“What If I can’t answer their questions?”

These thoughts and worries keep your focus on yourself… away from your audience. Not helpful.

Here’s my favourite quick and easy exercise to unhook from unhelpful thought – a technique from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

4. Your state is everything. Get into the right one.

Do you need to be inspirational, confident or reflective? Play music that deliberately puts you into this state beforehand. When I’m presenting from home, I do this by muting myself.

5. Warm up the pipes

Drink water with lemon. Do vocal exercises (Sound of Music, anyone?). Do powerful poses.I like to ground myself. If I’m home, I’ll put my bare feet on the grass and open my arms, like I’m connecting to something bigger than little old me working from home in my gym gear.

6. Delivery

Worried you’ll forget what to say or have a blank? Look at the audience and smile.

Plan your starting point so you can start strong.

So how did ‘Mary’ go?

“It went really well! Lots of engagement from the audience… The parts that people connected with me the most was when I was sharing something about my journey.

It also helped that I was passionate about the subject.”

Give these tips a go at your next meeting or presentation.


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