November 26, 2014, by Jennifer Scott

Presentation Skills

My ideal title page for any presentation!

My ideal title page for any presentation!

I don’t like to admit this, but I’m actually a bit shy. I hate public speaking and find it awkward talking about myself (blogging is a bit of a trick, since I can’t actually see people reading it). This afternoon, I have to present myself to a group. No Powerpoint, no big theme to focus on, just talking about myself and why I’m employable.

A few weeks ago, I mentioned that I had to present my ideas to Boots employees as part of an Advantage Award module. I felt very, very nervous. Throughout my time at uni I have given a few presentations, so I’ve learnt a few tricks and I’m here to share them with you (and myself!) before this afternoon.

1. Know your stuff. There’s nothing worse than a presentation going well and then being unable to answer a question afterwards, but if you know what you’re talking about in advance you’re sure to succeed.
2. Don’t learn a script. This is a sure-fire way to not be able to pick up if you lose where you are. Just remember that nobody but you knows if you forget one point, so knowing what you want to talk about without memorising it word for word is a good technique. I tend to organise by certain topics rather than scripting.
3. Stand tall! Body language tricks the audience and yourself, so if you look like you’re confident you might just turn out to be.
4. Take a break right before. Heading for a coffee with a friend always helps me to relax a bit beforehand.
5. Finally, don’t overthink it. You can do it! You’re a student at a bloomin’ great university and you’ve worked hard, so it’s going to go well.

Fingers crossed this afternoon goes well! If you’ve got any extra presentation tips that you rely on, I’d love to hear them in the comments.

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