Polishing Your Presentations

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Presentation by Michael Rubinstein given at the IFPRI TGIF tutorial on August 1, 2008

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Polishing Your Presentations

  1. 1. Polishing Your Presentations August 1, 2008 Michael Rubinstein Tuesday, August 1, 2008
  2. 2. The Presenter’s Worst Nightmare… <ul><li>“ Well I thought my razor was dull until I heard his speech.” </li></ul><ul><li>--Groucho Marx, Horsefeathers </li></ul>Page
  3. 3. <ul><li>Preparing Your Presentation </li></ul>Page
  4. 4. First Steps <ul><li>Be clear about your main messages </li></ul><ul><li>Target your approach to your audience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>researchers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>donors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>policymakers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>NGOs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>mixed audience </li></ul></ul>Page
  5. 5. Engage your audience <ul><li>Pose a challenging question </li></ul><ul><li>Tell a joke (culturally sensitive) </li></ul><ul><li>Tell a story related to your research </li></ul><ul><li>Show a photo </li></ul><ul><li>Tell why you think this research is especially important </li></ul>Page
  6. 6. Body of the presentation <ul><li>Tailor your presentation to your audience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>tone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>content </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Do you need to talk about…? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>methodology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>program structure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>challenges </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>impact </li></ul></ul>Page
  7. 7. Closing <ul><li>Come up with a memorable closing </li></ul><ul><ul><li>photo </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>quote </li></ul></ul>Page
  8. 8. Practice Your Presentation <ul><li>Never give a presentation without practicing </li></ul><ul><li>Better to practice in front of colleagues </li></ul><ul><li>Time yourself </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of practice is the number </li></ul><ul><li>one cause of poor presentations </li></ul>Page
  9. 9. <ul><li>Delivering Your Presentation </li></ul>Page
  10. 10. Don’t Waste Time <ul><li>Avoid long introductory statements </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t say “I will be brief” </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t complain about the lack of time </li></ul>Page
  11. 11. Eye Contact <ul><li>Eye contact builds connection to audience </li></ul><ul><li>Fix your gaze on individual people </li></ul><ul><li>Look in all corners of the room </li></ul><ul><li>Never back look at the screen </li></ul><ul><li>“ Read” your audience </li></ul>Page
  12. 12. Speech <ul><li>Speak slowly and clearly </li></ul><ul><li>Use voice inflection </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasize key words </li></ul><ul><li>Speak directly into microphone </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t hide your passion for your subject </li></ul>Page
  13. 13. Body Language <ul><li>Use open positions </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t fold arms </li></ul><ul><li>Use hand gestures </li></ul><ul><li>Smile at beginning of presentation </li></ul><ul><li>Stand up straight – like Mommy always said </li></ul>Page
  14. 14. Distracting Movements <ul><li>Rocking from side to side </li></ul><ul><li>Scratching </li></ul><ul><li>Fidgeting </li></ul><ul><li>Playing with keys, rings, coins, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Putting hands in pockets </li></ul>Page
  15. 15. Dealing with Nerves <ul><li>Take a moment to focus </li></ul><ul><li>Take a few deep breaths </li></ul><ul><li>Concentrate on speaking slowly </li></ul><ul><li>Channel your energy into gestures </li></ul><ul><li>Practice increases confidence </li></ul>Page
  16. 16. <ul><li>Using PowerPoint </li></ul>Page
  17. 17. Using PowerPoint <ul><li>Assess whether you need PPt </li></ul><ul><li>You are the presentation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>PPt is only there as a guide </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Don’t read the slide content </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t look at the screen </li></ul>Page
  18. 18. Slide content <ul><li>6 words per line </li></ul><ul><li>6 lines per slide </li></ul><ul><li>36 words per slide </li></ul><ul><li>Bulleted text </li></ul><ul><li>One slide per minute </li></ul>Page
  19. 19. Graphics <ul><li>Use them! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>photos, graphs, movie clips </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Graphs & charts must be very simple </li></ul>Page
  20. 20. Templates <ul><li>Use an IFPRI template </li></ul><ul><li>Consistent fonts, formatting, color </li></ul><ul><ul><li>especially when importing from other sources </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Serif or sans serif </li></ul><ul><li>Light or dark? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>dark font on light background or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>light font on dark background </li></ul></ul>Page
  21. 21. Top Ten PowerPoint Misteaks <ul><li>Complicated graphics </li></ul><ul><li>Inconsistent fonts </li></ul><ul><li>Inconsistent font size </li></ul><ul><li>inconsistent formatting </li></ul><ul><li>Too many colors </li></ul><ul><li>Writing things out in complete sentences is a common mistake. </li></ul><ul><li>Too many slides per time allotted </li></ul><ul><li>Too much text per slide </li></ul><ul><li>Reading verbatim from slides </li></ul>Page
  22. 22. Parting Thought <ul><li>Groucho: Tomorrow we start tearing down the college. </li></ul><ul><li>“ But, Professor, where will the students sleep?” </li></ul><ul><li>Groucho: Where they always sleep--in the classroom. </li></ul>Page

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