A Geek’s Guide to Presenting

Public speaking and presenting can be terrifying to all types of people, especially when they are dealing with business people. Geeks, however, especially struggle when it comes to speaking out in front of business personnel. There is a struggle to make a connection between the two and business people usually do not like and or understand the way geeks present information. So, in order for a geek to succeed in the circumstance that is presenting information, it is ideal that they follow a simple tips. To see a list of things not to do, click here.

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Step one is to clarify your goal. This is important for all people to do, not just geeks. First, you must identify the problem that the presentation is trying to solve. Having a clear image of the task at hand is important for the structural and organizational process of presenting. If you are unable to clarify the goal of the presentation, you should reschedule for another time when you know the answer. If you cannot identify the goal, you will not be able to deliver a successful presentation. Successful presentations can lead have many benefits, like leverage opportunities the ability to influence decisions. This is something I always prepare for and deliver in the title slide of my presentations (considering all of my presentations are PowerPoint based).

Step two is to get into the their heads. In order to make sure your goal is met, it is important understand what the audience needs out of it. You should ask yourself three main questions. What is their starting point? What do they really need to know? What do they need to feel? to put this in perspective, when preparing my presentations I try to tailor them to the needs of the audience. I frequently debate how I can move the audience, in a positive way, and what I can do to keep their attention and strongly deliver my point across. Putting yourself in their shoes can definitely help you in your presentation creation process and delivery.

Step three is to craft the audience. What I mean by this is you need to mold your presentation in a way the elicits emotion out of both you and the people you are presenting to. A good way to accomplish this is through telling stories. Telling stories can trigger memories and bring out the emotional appeal in a presentation. They can also help show the importance ,on a human level, of its essence. I love telling stories in presentations. I believe they are a good way of keeping pace and showing the audience how much you care about what you are telling them.

The final step is to connect with your audience and end with a call to action. In order to successfully connect with the audience, you must pause at the right times, and make sure you are present and aware of what you are trying to portray. Pauses are a great tool used to give the audience time to reflect or time to take in a dramatic statement. One should end their presentation with a call to action. Instead of asking the crowd of they have any questions, ask them a question. As them something relating to leveraging or try to influence a decision. The end of the presentation should be memorable and interactive.

Conclusively, presenting can be a struggle for many people, especially geeks. They take a lot of practice, nerves, and time in order to perfect. I personally hate presentations, I may not be bad at them, I just hate them. However, if you are one who struggles to impress an audience and you need help properly forming a presentation, see the tips above for assistance.