But I Like Reading From My Slides
We have all had the instructors or have been to a presentation where the professor/presenter read from the screen. I cannot say enough about how horrible this is. It is especially horrible if you have something important to get across. I also find this disrespectful to my audiences time and energy. If they took the time and expended the energy to get here I can at least put some thought into my presentation.
Here are three tips to help you with presentations even if you like reading from your slide deck.
Realize Your audience wants you to succeed - When I first entered into training this was the first thing my mentor/manager told me. I found this to be powerful. When you really “get” this it is liberating. Here is an example… Have you been in a presentation where the presenter made a blunder? I bet you felt uncomfortable and maybe even squirmed in your seat a bit. That is because you wanted them to succeed.
Throw away your presentation mode - Be you. You have a unique style. If you haven’t discovered that style then it is time to just practice presenting without being in presentation mode. Presentation mode is that almost robotic look and feel that some people get when they are about to present. We see this a lot in academia (sorry colleagues but it happens a lot in our fields). I think there are classes in how to give bad presentations...I digress. When you present as you rather than a presenter people find it to be genuine. This can be a little difficult because you have to put yourself out there rather than your presenter self. Take that step and remember, the audience wants you to succeed.
Show your passion - In order for you to show your passion the first two tips usually need to be accomplished. This of this as the third step in the process. Showing passion is
sometimes easier said than done. One thing that helped me to show my passion when presenting is… this may sound stupid… I gave myself permission to make mistakes. Once I did this I felt more comfortable to take some chances and try different ways to show my passion for the topic. Let me tell you it is fun to show your passion in a genuine way. Let me also tell you that you will make plenty of mistakes along the way. I made a blunder just a couple of days ago. When I make a blunder of it I embrace it, realize the audience wants me to still succeed, learn from it, and let it go. Holding on to mistakes and blunders just makes things to heavy to learn and grow.
If you think reading from the screen is a good way to go...you might be a presentation killer.