How to Avoid Bad Presentation

No one willingly gives a presentation when they don’t believe in their presentation skills, but a lot of people are forced to in their every day lives. Sometimes these presentations are required through school or work or some other event but most people do have to give one sometime in their life. No one wants to have bad presentation skills either, but sometimes they just can’t get it right and none of the instructions on what to do is working for them. Too often guides to becoming a good presenter focus only on what to do and what are good presentation skills and they don’t even mention what bad presentation skills are. Sometimes the traditional style of learning doesn’t work for people and knowing what not to do helps them more than anything else. Because of this need for information about bad presentation skills, below is a detailed explanation of everything done wrong in a presentation and why it’s bad.

There are always two steps to giving a presentation, and because of that there are two steps in which poor choices are made. The first is always going to be the organizational phase. The organizational phase is when all the information for a presentation is gathered, sorted and processed into a presentation. The number one mistake here is that it is done too late. Procrastinating to the night before can be hard not to do, but even giving yourself an extra day can help improve the presentation drastically.

The next example of bad presentation skills is poor ordering. Simply throwing together all the information will create a hard to deliver and hard to understand presentation. Along with the technical aspects of the organization phase, it’s often viewed in bad light when you don’t write anything down at all. Some people can naturally organize things in their head, but all people will benefit from putting it down on paper, even if it takes a little more time. These are the bad presentation skills that you should avoid during the organizational phase.

The next phase, delivery, has just as many poor presentation skills. The first and most common is muttering or speaking softly. While many people are shy in front of crowds, muttering and speaking quietly will only draw more attention to you than if you were to speak in a reasonable manner in the first place; on top of that it makes your presentation impossible to understand. The next example of bad presentation skills is ignoring the audience. Without acknowledging they are there or making eye contact the audience usually loses interest in what you have to say fast, and that will make your entire presentation wasted. Finally, don’t acknowledge mistakes during the presentation. It’s fine to discuss and reflect on how you could have done better afterwards, but don’t interrupt the flow of the presentation to dwell on a mispronounced word or mistake, simply correct yourself and move on; often times an audience won’t even realize that you had made a mistake, so acknowledging it in this fashion only makes it more pronounced. These are the bad presentation skills related to delivery.

There you have it, the worst and most prominent presentation skills. Often time’s people won’t realize they are doing any of these and while they’re actively utilizing the good presentation skills, they are oblivious to the bad ones and are unable to fix them. Becoming a good presenter is a two step process, the first is to cease using the bad presentation skills and the second is to start using the good ones. Usually being aware of not to do will be just as useful as knowing what to do. Knowing this is half the struggle to become a great presenter.

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