It’s that time again…the monthly meeting. You break out ina cold sweat just thinking about it. Whether you present toyour managers or your employees you are saying toyourself:What if I mess up?What if I repeat myself?What if the audience doesn’t like what I say?What if I forget a part of my speech?What if I look nervous?It’s okay! You’re not the only one feeling this way. TheBook of Lists states that the #1 fear is speaking in public.This fear is greater than the fear of death.Well, I have the answers to your fears and can help youbecome an outstanding presenter. These 10 tips will helpyou become more confident making presentations thatachieve results.1. Start with an End in MindAsk yourself, “Why am I speaking?” “What do I want theaudience to do after listening to my speech?” This will helpyou focus on the message you want to share with youraudience. It will help you focus on who is your audience,the key points, and what you want your audience to do afterlistening to you.2. Keep It SimpleKeep your presentation simple by learning to “speak toexpress instead of speaking to impress.” What I mean byspeaking to impress is when you see speakers using $5words for $2 situations during speeches and they lookuncomfortable doing it. Another example of this is whenpresenters overuse PowerPoint. Your audience will soonlose interest in what you are saying.Also keep it simple with the structure of your speech. Anopening, body with tree major points, and a closing will helpyou connect with your audience.Just be sincere, concise, and simple in your presentation andyou will always connect with your audience.3. Practice, Practice, PracticeMaster your presentation by practicing. Here’s the secret topracticing…first read your speech to yourself 2-3 times. Thisallows you to work out the majority of the rough spots inyour presentation before you start rehearsing.Then rehearse in front of a mirror or even better a videocamera or tape player. Also try to rehearse in front ofsomeone whose opinion you value.Then practice as close as possible to your speakingenvironment as possible. For example, if you will bespeaking behind a lectern, practice with your notes on anironing board.4. Visualize SuccessBefore going to sleep the night before a presentation I taketime to visualize the success of the presentation. The key tomaking visualization work for you is involving as manysenses (sound, touch, sight, smell, etc.) as possible in yourvisualization. Have you ever had a dream where it seemed soreal you awoke in a cold sweat (You don’t need to tell mewhat the dream was)? It was because you used all yoursenses and that dream became so real to you that youneeded to escape from it.Visualize yourself giving a successful presentation whereyou see yourself as a confident presenter, hear yourselfhandling questions, etc. Visualize successful presentationsso that it becomes real.5. Eat the ElephantI ask the timeless question, “How do you eat an elephant?”Piece by piece. The same answer applies to presenting to agroup. How do you present to a group? Person to person.Break the group into individuals.”How do I present to a large group?” is one of the biggestquestions people have when giving presentations. Getpersonal. Whenever possible, I will make sure I arrive earlyto the room I’m presenting in and plant myself by theentrance. I will then greet as many people as possible thatwalk through the door. I will shake their hands and let themknow I am glad they came. Here’s a tip for guaranteeing apositive audience:* As you greet, look for pleasant, upbeat people. Then saysomething like, “I’m especially glad you made it today. As amatter of fact there’s a sit in the front row with your name onit. Please enjoy!”The audience member will usually chuckle and you startedthe personalization process. Also this allows you to stack allthe friendly audience members in the front rows. It’s alwaysnice to see friendly faces in the front row.Remember, when giving a presentation, it’s not about yourneeds or concerns. It’s about the audience’s needs orconcerns. Make it personal and eat the elephant!6. Nail Your OpeningIt’s the first words your audience hears. Know your openinglike the back of your hand. Know exactly what you are goingto say. Once you get started and gain some momentum youwill start to gain confidence for the rest of your speech.It helps to pause for 3-5 seconds before you are about tostart your presentation so that can focus on what you areabout to say.7. Nail Your EndingIt’s the last words your audience hears and reminder aboutyou. You can have a great opening and body and have abad ending and your audience your always remember howyou ended.Ask your audience to take action, think about an idea, etc. sothat they understand why they are there.8. Backup if You ForgetIf you forget what you are about to say or lose your place inthe presentation do the following:* Stop speaking. Take two steps backward. Then take a deep breath. Collect your thoughts. Smile. Take two steps forward and proceed with your presentation.* Go back and repeat the last sentence. That will help trigger what comes next in your presentation.* If you really go blank, ask an audience member what was the last sentence you said. Also, if they have handouts of your speech, you can ask the audience what is the next subject we will discuss. You will be surprised how many people will volunteer this information to help you. This will give you time to collect your thoughts, involve the audience, and go forward with your presentation.Note: If you forget a piece of information, collect yourself,and then go forward. Never say, “I’m sorry.” Unless theaudience has a copy of every single word of your speechthey will never know you forgot something.9. Realize Nervousness is the Tool of Great PresentersBelieve it or not, all presenters, whether professional oroccasional, are nervous when presenting. The difference isthe best presenters use nervousness to their advantage byturning nervousness into positive energy. Here are sometips to control nervousness:* Whenever possible walk from the back of the room to burn some of the nervous energy.* Slow your breathing* Stretch10. Get ExcitedGet excited so that the audience is excited about hearingyour presentation.Some of the ways you can become excited is:* Remember what you say is important and can make a difference for your audience.* Every opportunity to present is a chance for you to succeed.* Every time you speak you become better than the last time.* Presenting will expose me to countless opportunities I wouldn’t have by not presenting.So the next time you have the opportunity to present applythe above techniques. You will have fun while presenting ona whole new level.Author: Ed SykesArticle Source: EzineArticles.comProvided by: Guest blogger

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