Improve Your Presentation Skills at Work

Presentation skills are primary career skills for some people, like sales representatives. What's not usually recognized is that presentation skills are also important workplace and career social skills for everybody. It's common for otherwise highly competent people to consider themselves under recognized, without realizing that their presentation is the problem. In some cases, people are promoted primarily because their presentation is better than others, rather than because their work is better.

Lack of presentation skills is a serious disadvantage when competing for jobs, or even attention, in the workplace. Some people are anything but confident when making presentations, and that, inevitably, detracts from their performance.

Presentation Performance Questions and Answers

Depending on your position, you'll have certain areas where you're required to present your work to a manager, colleagues, or clients. You may just be discussing your work, or making an actual presentation. These are the primary issues for presentation performance:

Do you feel tense or insecure, doing presentations? These are classic weak spots. In most cases, being self conscious is the major issue. Remember you know you stuff. It's your call what's being presented, and how it's presented. Treat your presentation like a conversation, not an ordeal.

What are you good at, when you're doing presentations? Everyone has a style of presentation. If you're good at monologues, or showing interesting graphics with commentary, consider how you approach these elements of your presentation. Wouldn't it make sense to use similar methods for the rest of your presentation? Something simple, like a slide show, can be managed quite easily to fit your presentation style.

Do you have problems with audiences? This is very common, and it's a result of inexperience, combined with natural shyness. We'll deal with this in the next section, but believe us, it's easily fixable.

Do you go blank, doing a presentation? This is pure nervous reaction, usually meaning lack of experience. There's a way of permanently fixing this problem, but remember to use notes, and you'll find it stops being an issue.

Do you have difficulty putting together your presentations? This is partly professional, and partly personal. It's a mental block, created by using the wrong approach. Try lateral thinking, working backward from the intended goal.

Solving the presentation problems

All of the above problems are very easily fixable. There's a pattern here, and it relates to these factors:

  • Lack of experience
  • Lack of self confidence
  • Using the wrong methods of presentation
  • Self defeating mental states

These are all psychological barriers. Everybody has these problems. The best professional presenters have had years of experience.  They're so used to doing presentations they barely notice they're doing them. Their presentations are unforced, fluent and natural. 

The answer is training

You can get training in a variety of forms of presentation. Each can help immensely in removing the mental barriers to performing well.

These are some of the choices:

  • Public speaking courses
  • Performance based arts
  • Special remedial training through professional trainers
  • Personal coaching

These forms of training give intensive experience in presentation on many levels. Experience creates reflexes and self confidence. You'll find that your presentation become masterpieces in a few months.