How to Boost Staff Confidence and Performace with Public Speaking

Public speaking builds confidence. When you experience the thrill of holding an audience in the palm of your hand and receive their appreciative applause your confidence soars.

Public speaking boosts your self esteem. When you see the audience relate to you as someone who really knows what you are talking about your self esteem increases. And we all can use an increase in self esteem.
People start looking at you in a more positive way. Even if you never use your public speaking skills in giving formal presentations, people will notice that you are more articulate and confident in expressing an opinion or sharing an insight. You will discover that they begin looking to you for advice and opinions on many issues.

It helps you become a more organized thinker.. Planning, writing and delivering a well researched , well organized presentation has an overflow effect in other areas of your life. You begin to plan and organize your thoughts more effectively. This is especially helpful in your career or business. When your manager or supervisor asks your opinion on some work related issue you are better able to express your ideas in a clear, concise and well organized manner.

Public speaking begins to alter your self perception. As you begin to use the skills involved in public speaking you will notice that you begin to start talking to yourself in a more positive way. You begin to see yourself as capable and confident.

By accepting the challenge to speak in public you begin to explore and actualize your own potential. Many of us go through life not realizing how much we are capable of achieving. Public speaking is an effective tool in the process of self discovery.

Public speaking gives you the courage to break out of your comfort zone. I believe that the comfort zone is the enemy of human growth. When we are too comfortable where we are we tend to become stagnant. Speaking in public pushes us out of the comfort zone and reveals to us our enormous capabilities.

9 Tips for Handling Public Speaking Questions

How you handle questions from an audience can often be the
deciding factor as to how your presentation is received. If
you’re pitching for business, then it’s absolutely vital to
handle questions well.

1. Be prepared for questions – When you write your
presentation, think about what you’re likely to be asked and
what your answer is going to be. Maybe you won’t want to
answer a particular question there and then, so think about
what you’ll say to satisfy the questioner.

2. Make it clear at the start – You may decide to take
questions as you go or at the end of your presentation.
Whatever you decide, make it clear at the start and don’t
change your mind. I would suggest questions at the end in a
short presentation; if you take questions as you go, then
your timing will get knocked out.
And always remember, an audience won’t forgive you for
taking half an hour when you were only scheduled to speak
for fifteen minutes.

3. Never finish with questions – Far better to ask for
questions five or ten minutes before the end, deal with the
questions and then summarise for a strong finish. Too many
presentations finish on questions and the whole thing goes a
bit flat – particularly if you don’t get any.

4. Listen – When asked a question, listen and look like your
listening. It may be something you’ve heard a million times
before. Treat the questioner with respect and don’t
trivialise their point.

5. Thank the questioner – It’s only polite, it shows respect
and it gives you a bit more time to consider your answer.

6. Repeat the essence of the question – Some people may not
have heard the question so your answer may not make any
sense to them. It can also be irritating for them not to
hear the question. Again, it gives you more time to think of
the answer and it makes you look so clever and in control.

7. Answer to everyone – Don’t fall into the trap of only
answering the questioner. If they happen to be near the
front then you could end up having a conversation with them
and exclude everyone else.

8. Keep it simple – Many speakers, when it comes to
questions, have become more relaxed and the fact that
someone is interested enough to ask them a question, leads
them to go on too long with the answer – DON’T.

9. Don’t bluff or bluster – If you don’t know the answer to
a question, say so and find out. Suggest to the questioner
that you’ll ‘phone them or come and see them with the
answer. It can even be a good way to make further contact
after the presentation.

As we all know, it’s possible that you may not be asked any
questions and you then have that awkward silence.
People may be thinking about what you’ve just said and may
need more time to ask. They may also be a bit shy and may
take a few minutes to speak out. Why not have a question of
your own prepared and say something like. “You may be asking
yourself………?”
If you still fail to get any questions then go straight into
your summary and closing statement.

Handling a question and answer session well, demonstrates
your professionalism and reflects on your message.

Making Yourself Memorable: Create A Stunning Powerpoint Presentation

Did you know that using a PowerPoint presentation can be one of the most effective ways to address a large group of people? With such a variety of learning styles, using a visual presentation allows you to reach a large group of people – particularly those who need to see it to believe it. What better way than to create a stunning PowerPoint presentation?

Have the data, but lacking that polished finish? A good way to start is to look at templates to get an idea of which style suits you and your presentation. By accessing numerous templates at http://Microsoft.com you be able to create stunning presentations. Looking at an individual slide or downloading an entire sample presentation can inspire you to be more creative with the content that you include in your own presentation. There are many charts and diagrams in different templates that can really spark your creativity and give you additional ideas to give your presentation a professional look. While looking through the samples, consider that if you are wowed by the slides, graphics, or charts, your audience probably will be too.

What works? There is no magic formula, but there are amazing presentations. With the ability to create almost anything imaginable, there is no limit to what can be included in your presentations. Vibrant colours, sleek graphics and stylish photographs all contribute to making a great presentation even better.

What does not work? Avoid the overuse of clip-art. Although there is some good quality clip-art out there, too much in a presentation can be distracting and give it an unpolished, unprofessional look. That is not to say that there isn’t a time and a place for a cleverly placed clip-art picture. Another thing to watch out for is wordiness – before adding a slide filled with text, consider adding the supplemental information in a handout.

Handouts are another great idea because you are providing your participants with additional information which adds value to your presentation. The added bonus of using handouts is that you are giving your participants additional information, which includes your contact information (a great instrument for making new connections and contacts).

Try to tie in visual cues that will help people remember and associate images with you or your company. The key is to make yourself, your presentation, and your information valuable and memorable.