Students’ Hub: 5 Pointers for the Perfect Presenter

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Written by Alaa (aka Lols)

 

...and he grew up to be the best presenter ever!
…and he grew up to be the best presenter ever!

Hello everyone! It’s been quite a long time since I “nagged” you guys into reading college-related articles. But hey, a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do! Well, I’m fine thank you very much for asking. I hope you’re all doing well, especially since it’s finals season (praying hard for you!). A couple of months back, I talked to you about how to prepare a stunning and well executed presentation. But displaying the material won’t be enough without the actual presenting of it.

Here are a few pointers of how to explain and relay the message behind your material on screen, in a PowerPoint presentation:

 

"Good Job, Henry" - said the parrot.
“Good Job, Henry” – said the parrot.
  • Rehearse your presentation a lot of times and by a lot, I mean A LOT! You’ll get to figure out the weak spots of your presentation – aka the parts that you didn’t get very well – and you’ll be able to configure them to your comfort. By rehearsing, you’ll be more familiar with your work (as if you haven’t already but this will strengthen it) and it’s very recommended that you rehearse in front of people, whether friends or family, so that you have an audience’s perspective and feedback.

 

Look at all the cue cards he's not going to use!
Look at all the cue cards he’s not going to use!
  • Use cue cards as reminders; not a book you read out loud while presenting. Having many cue cards will only distract you from what you’re supposed to say. Cue cards are there to remind yourself in tiny points of what should be said. Reading off of cue cards will make your presentation sound bland, make you look unprepared and will definitely bore your audience and make you lose points.

 

Sir with the paper airplane...yes, you!
Sir with the paper airplane…yes, you!
  • Look up at your audience. They’re not going to bite, I promise. Be yourself while presenting, move around (it will distract you in a good way), and fix your sight on a certain corner of the room (usually having someone you trust or friends sitting there will make you feel more comfortable, especially for those who have a fear of speaking in public) to look back at whenever you feel like you’ve lost concentration or feel like you need to rapidly recollect your thought.

 

"Santa Clause is coming to town!"
“Santa Clause is coming to town!”…what!?
  • Break the ice with a joke or a nice little pre-presentation chat can really help. That’s what we usually call “attention getters” in the presentation world. Other than a joke or pre-chat, you could start things off with a question about the topic you’re presenting, a video that somehow sheds some light on the topic or a small act that could help make your presentation more captivating. As much as it helps you relax a bit (and gets you more points), it loosens up the audience as well.

 

More like a "cringer" if you ask me!
More like a “cringer” if you ask me!
  • Clinchers will wrap your presentation in a nice way. Aside from your concluding points (to wrap up your presentation in a way that your audience actually knows what went on), you could use a “clincher”.  “Clinchers” are simply put, a quote or phrase (or quite frankly anything) that gives a nice closure to your presentation and could have your audience satisfied and your grades intact.

 

That’s all for now! I think the most important piece of advice I can give regarding this subject is to just be yourself, to loosen up because it’s just a presentation after all and above all, prepare your material well. Best of luck on your exams! Later!

 

Any other pointers?

It would be really helpful for myself as well as others if you could share with us your own pointers on how to present and basically “kill it”. If you have any comments on the pointers I’ve shared with you or any special ones of your own, you could write them in the comments section or send them my way at alaa@cairocontra.com

 

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