The Elements

By Judith Bowman   |   May 23, 2017

Be Prepared: 11 Tips on Giving a Top Presentation

Categories: Speaking

We all ‘present’ ourselves every day, and as we know, “The Presentation is everything!”

Preparation in life is key and integral to being well-perceived and well-received by others. It helps you own your material and remember your goal: to convey your message by relating to your audience while remembering that every audience is different. Your ability to adapt, relate and successfully convey information is key.

tips on presenting

As always, we emphasize preparation as a pre-requisite to any successful presentation.

When Presenting, Pay Special Attention to the Following:

• Know your audience. Identify your client need and fulfill that need.

• Own your material; forwards and backwards, inside and out.

• Obtain a copy of attendee list in advance to familiarize yourself with who is coming and practice pronouncing names so you can use (perfectly pronounced) names during your program.

• Craft your compelling message… “what’s in it for them?”

• After you are introduced, shake hands with your introducer which sets the tone for your professional presentation.

• Dismount the stage as soon as possible, eliminating the stage as a “barrier.” You want nothing to interfere with the relationship you endeavor to engender between you and your audience.

• Voice is a powerful medium; use your voice to your advantage. Articulate clearly. Be careful of the “non-words,” “um,” “you know,” “you know, like, I mean,” etc.

• Body language conveys or betrays powerful information. Be aware of your stance, as well as use of hands and over-gesturing.

• Thank people for their question versus saying “that’s a great question” which suggests you are somehow grading or rating their question.

• Make eye contact with the person at the furthest point in the room; complete the thought. Do the same thing with each person as you work and wend your way up the aisles and through the room with your eyes until you have made eye-contact with everyone in the room, making each person there feel acknowledged.

• Walk participants to door, shake hands, use their name and thank each for coming and for your interest in your topic.

How we play the game of life lies within each and every one of us. How we conduct ourselves in our own dealings and interactions with others at home and work is key. My hope is this article will serve as an opportunity to raise the bar and heighten awareness of the importance of preparation, showing leadership and demonstrating respect in life.

Remember: what you are giving off, others can feel.

“The price for success is always paid in advance.”

– Bill Belichick, on Preparation


Judith Bowman
Business Protocol

Judith Bowman founded Protocol Consultants International in 1993 and has prospered to become an established Business Protocol expert, educator, corporate speaker, and renowned authority in the field of Professional Presence, Dining Savvy, International Protocol Awareness, and personal and professional development. Ms. Bowman also provides Protocol Certification. She is a graduate of Boston College and has pursued studies in Effective Business Communication at Harvard University.

Ms. Bowman speaks to critical interpersonal communication skills and shares specific nuances advantageous to exemplary conduct in today’s fast-paced and highly competitive global work environment. She showcases everyday business situations and shows professionals how to leverage these as opportunities to demonstrate respect while earning respect – while showing you know “the difference” while making a difference to stand apart and outclass the competition!

Ms. Bowman has authored two business protocol books: “Don’t Take the Last Donut…” (Career Press) presently sold in 16 countries, translated in 14 languages, and her new book, “How to Stand Apart @ Work …” She has authored a weekly Everyday Etiquette column syndicated throughout New England for ten years by the Pulitzer Prize winning Eagle Tribune Publishing Company. Internationally, she authored a Business Protocol column for the prestigious Noblesse Magazine, China. She presently writes a weekly Business Protocol column for Boston Herald newspapers and has a coordinating weekly radio segment, “A Protocol Moment” on Herald Radio.
She also writes a monthly Fabulous Woman series which features truly fabulous women who have shattered the glass ceiling and has been featured in Leader to Leader, March, 2015.

Bowman has produced a series of support products which include: Executive Etiquette/First Impressions DVD, DINING 101 DVD and Protocol Training DVD – from her on-line How to Stand Apart series.

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