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18 effective strategies to improve your communication skills


Communication skills are some of the most utilized and the most sought after in the workplace. They’re essential for leaders and individual contributors to hone. Looking at our largely remot and hybrid work environments, great communication skills make the difference between connected, agile teams, and teams who fail to collaborate, stay aligned, and achieve common goals. 

The good news is that improving communication skills is easier than you might imagine. Here are some basic principles worth following in order to communicate better.

5 types of communication to develop

You and members of your team may have been working remotely for some time now. Whether you are in an office daily, at home managing from afar, or in a hybrid workplace between the two, you’ve likely leveraged more than one communication type.

For businesses to thrive long-term, it is important to develop communication skills that span each type. Here are the five most common communication types to focus on improving.

  • Oral communication: Thoughts are shared through speech. Examples include presentations, one-on-one meetings, and virtual calls.
  • Written communication: Thoughts and ideas are shared via the written word. This can be with emails, hand-written notes, or signage.
  • Non-verbal communication : Information is shared without the use of written or spoken words. Examples include facial expressions, tone of voice, body language, and gestures.
  • Active listening: Unlike the examples above, active listening is about receiving information. When someone is listening actively, they might ask questions to understand the information better, but refrain from focusing on their response so much that they fail to hear the speaker.
  • Contextual communication: Information i s s hared with mutual, potentially un s poken, under s t anding s of variou s factor s s uch a s interper s onal relation s hip s and the environment.

What is effective communication?

The most effective communicators clearly inform others and actively listen to them at the same time. They can accept input – both verbal and non-verbal – while also expressing their thoughts and opinions in an inclusive way.

Regardless of the communication style , effective communication involves a connection with others. It is a dance with a partner that moves, at times, in ways we did not predict. This means the most powerful skill you can leverage is being in sync with your audience. It involves understanding and speaking to its needs, and then responding to real-time feedback. It means having the conversation that your audience wants to have.

But achieving all of that can take some practice.

Below are some effective communication strategies to help you listen and communicate better.

How to improve communication skills

The best messages are often simple.

There’s no value in delivering any kind of communication, whether written, verbal, formal, or casual, if the message doesn’t come across clearly.

Communicating concisely — while maintaining interest and including everything your team needs to know — is a high-level communication skill.

Here are some ways to communicate better.

1. Keep your audience in mind

Your audience will naturally be more interested and engaged when you tailor your communications to their interests. Piquing their interest by speaking directly to what matters to them will naturally engage their desire to understand and interact with the information.

2. Don’t use 10 words when one will do

Even the most engaged and committed audience will eventually get bored. Keeping your message simple and concise will make it easier to understand and retain. Remember, you already know what you’re going to say, but they’re hearing it for the first time. Keep it simple.

3. Consider the best method to deliver your message

If the information you’re conveying isn’t urgent, consider sending an email or a memo. This is especially important when communicating expectations . Written communication will give your audience more time to review it, think it over, and follow up with questions. It will also give them a handy record to refer back to.

4. Get them involved

If you’ve ever worked as an instructor, manager, trainer, or coach, you’ll know that there are few better ways to learn new information than to teach it. Ask them for their input or to take a role in explaining new concepts and policies to their colleagues.  

5. Leverage face-to-face communication when possible

Communicating face-to-face adds multiple layers of information to an exchange, whether between two people or two hundred. Often, there’s a synergy created with in-person communication that’s difficult to replicate elsewhere. Here are some tips to make the most of face time with your team:

6. Make eye contact

If you’re wondering whether or not your message is getting across, few metrics provide as much feedback as eye contact . You can easily tell if the person you’re speaking to is understanding you, is distracted, worried, or confused — much of which is lost in digital communication.

7. Ask for feedback 

Not sure they got it? Ask! A powerful technique is to ask people to repeat back their version of what you just said. Often, this can improve retention, immediate understanding, and minimize misunderstandings later on. You can also ask them to reach out to you with helpful ways that you can improve your delivery in presentations and other forms of communication.

8. Read non-verbal cues

There are various types of nonverbal-cues . Yawns, fidgeting, and looking around the room are usually clear signs that your audience is thinking about something other than what you’re trying to convey. If you notice this, don’t take it personally. Try asking them to share what’s on their mind, recap previous points they may have missed, or adjourn for a later time.

9. Minimize distractions

If you’re chatting with someone (or a group) face-to-face, keep distractions at bay by leaving unnecessary electronic devices out of the space. Keep the attendance limited to just those who need to be there, and avoid scheduling at a time when people are likely to focus on something else (like just before the end of the day or right before lunch).

How to improve online communication:

Online communication is rapidly replacing office spaces as the primary location of doing business. Especially if you’re used to working with in-person teams, it may be challenging to adjust to having meetings, conversations, and even people that collaborate with you or report to you digitally . Since online communication presents a unique way to interact, here are some things to keep in mind: 

1. Stick to a time limit

Online meetings can be even more difficult to focus on, since they incorporate the distractions of a nearly-unlimited number of settings. Keep the meetings short and to the point, and be especially vigilant about minimizing (potentially) marathon Q&A sessions. If needed, follow up through asynchronous communication methods to protect everyone's time.

2. Be mindful of the other person

Generally, the person presenting is the only one who can give the meeting their full attention. Especially when working from home, assume that participants have multiple demands for their attention and structure the content accordingly.

3. Recap important details

A lot of nonverbal and interpersonal cues can be lost over a digital connection. Ensure understanding by recapping the key points. You can either do a quick review in an online meeting or a brief summary at the end of a lengthy email.

4. Don’t forget to respond

Be sure to respond to each communication with a quick acknowledgment, even if it’s an informal one. Although you may have received the message, it’s likely that the person on the other end will have no way of knowing unless you let them know. A couple words or even a “like” will usually do the trick.


5 extra tips to sharpen your communication skills

In general, if you’re looking to strengthen your communication skills , the following tips will help you succeed no matter the situation you find yourself in (or the audience you find yourself with):

  • Be approachable. If your teammates feel intimidated or worried that you may not respond well, they’re less likely to come to you with information.
  • Be patient. Not everyone communicates the same way. Taking the time to be sure you’ve understood the other person and communicated clearly can pay dividends.
  • Be self-aware. It’s okay if you’re still developing your communication skills, nervous, or having a bad day. It takes time — and practice — to become a skilled communicator.
  • Check for understanding. Don’t be afraid to invite feedback or ask questions to ensure that everyone’s on the same page.
  • Switch out the messenger. Allow other team members or leaders to develop their communication skills by empowering them to lead discussions and meetings.

How to be a better active listener

There is much talk about the beauty of active listening , but many people aren’t sure how it translates into actual behaviors. One of the main challenges to active listening is the preoccupation with a response. Many people are busy formulating a perfect answer, which leaves no bandwidth to engage with the input. To get out of this habit, which is not really in service of the speaker, consider the following steps.

Rethink how to add value

You may think that adding value to an exchange is mostly about what you say. But that is not always how others perceive it. Most of us value responses that help us think through our own ideas, that clarify our assumptions or point out possible blind spots. We often don’t need a listener to be brilliant or impress us with their own data. Instead, we may value most how they helped us sharpen our thoughts.

Paraphrase without judgment

If you find yourself preoccupied with responding, try changing the focus of your response. Instead of aiming to add your own thoughts, task yourself with giving a summary that withholds your opinion or judgment. As you listen, make it your goal to give a concise summary, perhaps clarifying the speaker’s initial language.

Bonus points for repeating sticky language that the speaker recognizes as their own (“so you were frustrated with the project because the deadline was an uncomfortable high ?”)

Ask questions that help speakers think

The next step from paraphrasing is to ask questions that move the needle. Much like the way a coach listens, these questions push speakers to go deeper into their own thinking, to clarify their expression or consider possible concerns. You can play devil’s advocate by pointing out inconsistencies or language that seems unclear. All of these are true gifts to a speaker and help you stay focused on listening.

Interrupt politely

Active listening isn’t mindless indulgence, and not all interruption is rude. Sometimes speakers get lost in the weeds, providing depths of detail you don’t need. Interruption can help them stay relevant – and be rewarded with more engagement.

Most speakers don’t mind being cut off by a question that lets them keep talking. Much harder, especially for introverts, is to interrupt someone in a meeting and end their floor time. Be sure to:

  • Validate the speaker (“Thank you for bringing that up.”)
  • Use a warm and polite tone. Get feedback from others on how you sound and come across.
  • Refer to shared interest (“I’d just like to make sure we get to hear from everyone about the project.”)

Tips to keep audiences engaged when you speak

Be relevant.

As we are flooded with information, many audiences will not be impressed by data. In fact, the desire to cover all bases or anticipate all possible questions is a common reason for wordiness.

To keep listeners engaged, especially in virtual meetings, you should carefully curate content for relevance. Ask yourself: How does this information affect my audience? How may it help them with their work? Is this level of detail helpful to understand my main message?

If you have no clear answers to these questions, consider cutting the content.

A hallmark of executive presence, concision is the ability to express your ideas in as few words as possible. Listeners appreciate this, as it shows your preparation and respect for your listeners’ time. In addition, concision signals confidence: the confidence to do less, to say something once, and trust that it lands.

Especially in virtual meetings, where the feedback loop can be flat, many speakers struggle with being concise. They may repeat themselves “just to make sure” or use more examples to make a point clear. But this kind of “more” can often be less, as audiences disengage, having gotten the point the first time.

Concision is a leap of faith. The faith in your own preparation and that your delivery is clear. In virtual meetings with cameras turned off, it becomes harder to keep this faith. For your own self-care as a speaker, you may want to ask your audience to be fully present and turn cameras on — and then reward them with your confident delivery.

Leave spaces for the audience to fill

One way to slow yourself down and check in with audiences is to pause after making a point. Not just a second to catch your breath, but an actual space for silence. Both virtual and in-person, it leaves an opening for your listeners to fill, providing you with real-time feedback as to what they need next. How granular do they want you to get? Do they actually have the questions you were going to answer? Or are they taking your ideas in a whole new direction?

We often feel wary about silence, as if it means that something is wrong. But things happen in silence, and you may be surprised what your listeners offer when given the chance to jump in. However they fill the space, you may get valuable hints as to how to sync and proceed. And that is when communication becomes dancing.

Treat pushback as openings, not obstacles

You may believe that by making a compelling case, you should be rewarded with instant buy-in. Which of course, almost never happens. As your proposals are challenged you get frustrated, perhaps even defensive, as you try to explain why you are right. Soon lines are drawn and both sides double down, and you find yourself stuck in a rut.

To avoid such a shutdown of your ideas, you may want to rethink how you experience pushback. Most new ideas aren’t embraced the way they are initially proposed, and your audience may not need you to have ready-made answers to all their questions. Try to view your pitch as an opening volley, and the pushback as guidance to have the talk that you need to have. Instead of reflexive defense, ask follow-questions to validate and explore the concern.


Final thoughts on effective communication strategies

As a leader and manager, you have tremendous power to set the tone for how your team communicates. While it can be easy to fall into bad communication habits, especially when transitioning to an increasingly digital interface, a shift in the way one individual communicates can open the doors for a radical shift throughout an entire workplace. Building effective communication skills takes time, but the effects are worth the effort at every level of your organization.

Enhance your communication skills

Discover tailored coaching to master effective communication for professional growth.

Nicolas Gattig

Better Up Fellow Coach

Feedback in communication: 5 areas to become a better communicator

Foster strong communication skills to enjoy professional success, improve your interpersonal communication skills with these 6 tips, upward communication: what is it 5 examples, the 5 business communication skills worth perfecting, member story: developing communication skills and owning the spotlight, communication is key in the workplace. here's how to improve, we need to talk (about communication styles in the workplace), what is nonverbal communication 10 different types (with examples), similar articles, reading the room gives you an edge — no matter who you're talking to, active listening: what is it & techniques to become an active listener, effective communication in relationships: 10 tips to improve it, 11 communication skills every leader should have, your guide to what storytelling is and how to be a good storyteller, empathic listening: what it is and how to use it, 6 presentation skills and how to improve them, stay connected with betterup, get our newsletter, event invites, plus product insights and research..

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14 Practical Tips to Improve Your Presentation Skills

  • The Speaker Lab
  • May 11, 2024

Table of Contents

Ever felt complete dread and fear at the thought of stepping up to deliver a presentation? If so, you’re not alone. The fear of public speaking is more common than you might think, but with the right presentation skills , it’s a hurdle that can be overcome.

In this article, we’ll help you master basic confidence-building techniques and conquer advanced communication strategies for engaging presentations. We’ll explore how body language and eye contact can make or break your connection with your audience; delve into preparation techniques like dealing with filler words and nervous habits; discuss tailoring content for different audiences; and much more.

Whether you’re prepping for job interviews or gearing up for big presentations, being prepared is key. With adequate practice and the proper attitude, you can crush your speech or presentation!

Mastering the Basics of Presentation Skills

Presentation skills are not just about speaking in front of a crowd. It’s also about effective communication, audience engagement, and clarity. Mastering these skills can be transformative for everyone, from students to corporate trainers.

Building Confidence in Presentations

Becoming confident when presenting is no small feat. But fear not. Even those who feel jittery at the mere thought of public speaking can become masters with practice and patience. Just remember: stage fright is common and overcoming it is part of the process towards becoming an effective presenter.

Taking deep breaths before you start helps calm nerves while visualizing success aids in building confidence. Also, know that nobody minds if you take a moment to gather your thoughts during your presentation—everybody minds more if they cannot understand what you’re saying because you’re rushing.

The Role of Practice in Enhancing Presentation Skills

In line with old wisdom, practice indeed makes perfect, especially when improving presentation skills. Consistent rehearsals allow us to fine-tune our delivery methods like maintaining eye contact or controlling body language effectively.

You’ll learn better control over filler words through repeated drills. Plus, the extra practice can help you troubleshoot any technical glitches beforehand, saving you the sudden panic during your actual presentations.

Remember that great presenters were once beginners too. Continuous effort will get you there sooner rather than later.

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Body Language and Eye Contact in Presentations

The effectiveness of your presentation can hinge on more than just the words you say. Just as important is your body language .

Impact of Posture on Presentations

Your posture speaks volumes before you utter a word. Standing tall exudes confidence while slouching could signal nervousness or lack of preparation.

If there’s one lesson to take away from our YouTube channel , it’s this: good presenters know their message but great ones feel it through every fiber (or muscle) of their being. The audience can sense that energy when they see open body language rather than crossed arms.

Maintaining Eye Contact During Your Presentation

Eyes are often called windows to the soul for a reason. They’re communication powerhouses. Making eye contact helps build trust with your audience members and keeps them engaged throughout your speech.

Avoid staring at note cards or visual aids too much as this might give an impression that you’re unprepared or uncertain about your chosen topic. Instead, aim to maintain eye contact between 50% of the time during presentations. This commonly accepted “50/70 rule” will help you exhibit adequate confidence to your audience.

If stage fright has gotten a hold on you, take deep breaths before you start speaking in order to stay calm. Make sure that fear doesn’t disrupt your ability to maintain eye-contact during presentations.

If body language and eye contact still feel like a lot to manage during your big presentation, remember our golden rule: nobody minds small mistakes. It’s how you handle questions or mishaps that truly makes a difference—so stay positive and enthusiastic.

Preparation Techniques for Successful Presentations

Presentation skills are like a craft that requires meticulous preparation and practice. Aspects like visual aids and time management contribute to the overall effectiveness of your delivery.

The first step towards delivering an impactful presentation is research and organization. The content should be well-researched, structured logically, and presented in simple language. This will make sure you deliver clear messages without any room for misinterpretation.

Dealing with Filler Words and Nervous Habits

Nervous habits such as excessive use of filler words can distract from your message. Luckily, there are plenty of strategies that can address these issues. For instance, try taking deep breaths before speaking or using note cards until fluency is achieved. In addition, practice regularly to work on eliminating these verbal stumbling blocks.

Avoiding Distractions During Presentations

In a digital age where distractions abound, maintaining focus during presentations has become an even more crucial part of the preparation process. This video by motivational speaker Brain Tracy provides insights on how one could achieve this level of focus required for effective presentations.

Maintaining Confidence Throughout Your Presentation

Confidence comes from thorough understanding of the chosen topic combined with regular practice sessions before the big day arrives. Make use of note cards or cue cards as needed but avoid reading from them verbatim.

Taking control over stage fright starts by arriving early at the venue so that you familiarize yourself with the surroundings, which generally calms nerves down considerably. So next time you feel nervous before a big presentation, remember—thorough preparation can make all the difference.

Engaging Your Audience During Presentations

Connecting with your audience during presentations is an art, and mastering it can take your presentation skills to the next level. Making the message conveyed reach an emotional level is essential, not just conveying facts.

Understanding Your Target Audience

The first step towards engaging your audience is understanding them. Tailor the content of your presentation to their needs and interests. Speak in their language—whether that be professional jargon or everyday slang—to establish rapport and ensure comprehension.

An effective presenter understands who they’re speaking to, what those individuals care about, and how best to communicate complex ideas understandably.

Making Complex Information Understandable

Dense data or complicated concepts can lose even the most interested listener if presented ineffectively. Breaking your key points down into manageable chunks helps maintain attention while promoting retention. Analogies are especially useful for this purpose as they make unfamiliar topics more relatable.

Audience Participation & Questions: A Two-Way Street

Incorporating opportunities for audience participation encourages engagement at another level. It allows listeners to become active participants rather than passive receivers of knowledge.

Consider techniques like live polls or interactive Q&A sessions where you invite questions from attendees mid-presentation instead of saving all queries until the end.

This gives you a chance not only engage but also address any misunderstandings right on spot.

  • Treat each question asked as an opportunity—it’s evidence someone has been paying attention. Even challenging questions should be welcomed as they demonstrate an engaged, thoughtful audience.
  • Encourage participation. It can be as simple as a show of hands or the use of interactive technologies for live polling during your presentation. This keeps your audience active and invested in the content.

Remember, your presentation isn’t just about putting on a show—it’s about meaningful interaction.

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Presentation Skills in Specific Contexts

Whether you’re nailing your next job interview, presenting an exciting marketing campaign, or delivering insightful educational content, the context matters. Let’s take a look.

The Art of Job Interviews

A successful job interview often hinges on effective communication and confidence. Here, the target audience is usually small but holds significant influence over your future prospects. Body language plays a crucial role; maintain eye contact to show sincerity and interest while open body language communicates approachability.

Bullet points summarizing key experiences are also helpful for quick recall under pressure. This allows you to present your chosen topic with clarity and positive enthusiasm without relying heavily on note or cue cards.

Pitching in Public Relations & Marketing

In public relations (PR) and marketing contexts, presentations need to capture attention quickly yet hold it long enough to deliver key messages effectively. Visual aids are valuable tools here—they help emphasize points while keeping the audience engaged.

Your aim should be highlighting presentation benefits that resonate with potential clients or partners, making them feel as though ignoring such opportunities would mean missing out big time.

Educational Presentations

An educational setting demands its own unique set of presentation skills where deep understanding trumps flashy visuals. You must make complex information understandable without oversimplifying essential details—the use of analogies can be beneficial here.

Keeping the audience’s attention is critical. Encourage questions and participation to foster a more interactive environment, enhancing learning outcomes for all audience members.

Tips for Becoming a Great Presenter

No single method is suitable for everyone when it comes to speaking in public. However, incorporating continuous improvement and practice into your routine can make you an exceptional presenter.

Tailor Your Presentation to Your Audience

Becoming an excellent speaker isn’t just about delivering information; it’s also about making a connection with the audience. So make sure that you’re taking setting, audience, and topic into consideration when crafting your presentation. What works for one audience may not work for another, so be sure to adapt your presentation styles according to the occasion in order to be truly effective.

The Power of Practice

The art of mastering public speaking skills requires practice —and lots of it . To become a great presenter, focus on improving communication skills through practice and feedback from peers or mentors. Try to seek feedback on every speech delivered and incorporate those pointers in your future presentations. Over time, this cycle of delivery-feedback-improvement significantly enhances your ability to connect with audiences and convey ideas effectively.

If you’re looking for examples of good speakers, our speech breakdowns on YouTube provide excellent examples of experienced presenters who masterfully utilize speaking techniques. Analyzing their strategies could give you great ideas for enhancing your own style.

Finding Your Style

A crucial part of captivating any audience lies in how you deliver the message rather than the message itself. Developing a unique presentation style lets you stand out as an engaging speaker who commands attention throughout their talk. Through — you guessed it — practice, you can develop a personal presentation style that resonates with listeners while showcasing your expertise on the chosen topic.

Your body language plays a pivotal role here: open gestures communicate confidence and enthusiasm towards your subject matter, two qualities essential for keeping audiences hooked. Similarly, using vocal variety adds dynamism to speeches by emphasizing points when needed or creating suspense during storytelling parts of your talk.

Cultivating Passion & Enthusiasm

Showcasing genuine passion for the subject helps keep listeners engaged throughout even lengthy presentations. Sharing stories related to the topic or expressing excitement about sharing knowledge tends to draw people in more than mere data recitation ever could.

Recognize that everybody is distinctive; don’t expect identical results from every speaker. The path to becoming a great presenter involves recognizing your strengths and working tirelessly on areas that need improvement.

FAQs on Presentation Skills

What are good presentation skills.

Good presentation skills include a clear message, confident delivery, engaging body language, audience understanding, and interaction. They also involve effective preparation and practice.

What are the 5 steps of presentation skills?

The five steps of presenting include: planning your content, preparing visual aids if needed, practicing the delivery aloud, performing it with confidence, and finally post-presentation reflection for improvements.

What are the 5 P’s of presentation skills?

The five P’s stand for Preparation (researching your topic), Practice (rehearsing your talk), Performance (delivering with confidence), Posture (standing tall), and Projection (using a strong voice).

What are your presentation skills?

Your personal set of abilities to deliver information effectively is what we call your presentation skill. It can encompass public speaking ability, clarity in speech or writing as well as visual communication talent.

Mastering presentation skills isn’t an overnight process, but practice and perseverance will put you well on your way to becoming an effective speaker.

You’ve learned that confidence plays a crucial role in effective presentations, so take deep breaths, make eye contact, and keep your body language open. As always, preparation is key. Tackle filler words head-on and get comfortable with visual aids for impactful storytelling.

Remember the importance of audience engagement — it’s all about understanding their needs and tailoring your content accordingly. This way, complex information turns into digestible insights.

Above all else: practice! After all, nothing beats experience when it comes to improving public speaking abilities.

  • Last Updated: May 9, 2024

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What It Takes to Give a Great Presentation

  • Carmine Gallo

draft a presentation on effective ways to improve communication skills

Five tips to set yourself apart.

Never underestimate the power of great communication. It can help you land the job of your dreams, attract investors to back your idea, or elevate your stature within your organization. But while there are plenty of good speakers in the world, you can set yourself apart out by being the person who can deliver something great over and over. Here are a few tips for business professionals who want to move from being good speakers to great ones: be concise (the fewer words, the better); never use bullet points (photos and images paired together are more memorable); don’t underestimate the power of your voice (raise and lower it for emphasis); give your audience something extra (unexpected moments will grab their attention); rehearse (the best speakers are the best because they practice — a lot).

I was sitting across the table from a Silicon Valley CEO who had pioneered a technology that touches many of our lives — the flash memory that stores data on smartphones, digital cameras, and computers. He was a frequent guest on CNBC and had been delivering business presentations for at least 20 years before we met. And yet, the CEO wanted to sharpen his public speaking skills.

draft a presentation on effective ways to improve communication skills

  • Carmine Gallo is a Harvard University instructor, keynote speaker, and author of 10 books translated into 40 languages. Gallo is the author of The Bezos Blueprint: Communication Secrets of the World’s Greatest Salesman  (St. Martin’s Press).

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Presentation Skills Pro

Effective Communication Presentation 101: Everything You Need to Know to Deliver a Great Presentation

  • Post author: Adi Wadjdi
  • Post last modified: September 18, 2023

effective communication presentation


Effective communication presentations can help you achieve personal and professional success in various situations, such as giving a speech, pitching an idea, teaching a lesson, or delivering a report. Have you ever wondered how some people can captivate their audience with their words and gestures? How they can persuade, inform, educate, or entertain with ease and confidence? How they can make a lasting impression with their presentation skills?

In this article, you will learn effective communication presentation skills, how to improve them, and how to apply them in your presentations. You will also find some practical and actionable tips that will help you enhance your confidence, clarity, and credibility as a presenter.

Table of Contents

What are effective communication presentation skills.

effective communication presentation

Presentation skills are the combination of verbal and non-verbal communication skills that you use to deliver your message to your audience. They include aspects such as:

  • Verbal communication: The words you choose, the tone you use, the pace you set, and the questions you ask.
  • Body language: The gestures you make, the eye contact you maintain, the posture you adopt, and the facial expressions you show.
  • Voice projection: The volume you use, the pitch you modulate, the intonation you vary, and the pauses you insert.
  • Visual aids : The slides you create, the images you select, the charts you display, and the videos you play.

Effective communication presentation skills are presentation skills that help you achieve your specific goals for your presentation. Depending on your purpose, your goals may be to:

  • Persuade your audience to adopt your point of view, support your cause, or take action.
  • Inform your audience about a topic, a problem, or a solution.
  • Educate your audience about a concept, a skill, or a process.
  • Entertain your audience with a story, a joke, or a performance.

Effective communication presentation skills can help you in various situations where presentation skills are required or beneficial. For example:

  • Giving a speech at a wedding, graduation, or conference.
  • Pitching an idea to a client, an investor, or a boss.
  • Teaching a lesson to a class, a workshop, or a webinar.
  • Delivering a report to a team, a committee, or a board.

How to Improve Your Presentation Skills

Improve Your Presentation Skills

Improving your presentation skills is something that takes time to happen. It requires practice, feedback, and continuous learning. However, there are some practical and actionable tips that can help you improve your presentation skills in the short term and in the long term. Here are some of them:

  • Define your purpose and scope for your presentation.
  • Identify your target audience and their needs and expectations.
  • Gather relevant and reliable information from various sources.
  • Evaluate and organize the information according to its relevance and importance.
  • Cite your sources properly and avoid plagiarism.
  • Start with an introduction that hooks your audience’s attention , explains what effective communication presentation is, why it is important, and provides an overview of the main points.
  • Follow with the body that covers the main points in detail, such as what practical communication presentation skills are, how they can help you achieve various goals, how to improve them, etc.
  • End with a conclusion that summarizes the main points, restates the benefits of effective communication presentation, provides a call to action for the reader, etc.
  • Use headings and subheadings to organize your content into logical sections.
  • Use bullet points or numbered lists to present multiple items or steps in a concise way.
  • Use transition words or phrases to connect your ideas and guide your audience through your presentation.
  • Rehearse your presentation several times, preferably in front of a mirror, a recorder, or a camera.
  • Simulate the actual presentation environment, such as the venue, the equipment, the audience size, etc.
  • Time yourself and adjust your content and pace accordingly.
  • Get feedback from someone you trust, such as a friend, a colleague, or a mentor.
  • Incorporate the feedback and make improvements.
  • Anticipate the most likely or common questions or challenges that may arise from your audience.
  • Prepare clear and concise answers or responses for each question or challenge.
  • Acknowledge and respect the questioner or challenger and their point of view.
  • Address the question or challenge directly and confidently.
  • Redirect the question or challenge to the audience or to another topic if necessary.
  • Choose visual aids and tools that are relevant, simple, and attractive.
  • Use visual aids and tools that are compatible with your presentation format, such as slides, images, charts, videos, etc.
  • Use visual aids and tools that are easy to see, hear, and understand for your audience.
  • Use visual aids and tools sparingly and strategically to avoid cluttering or distracting your audience.
  • Explain or describe your visual aids and tools when you introduce them.

How to Apply Effective Communication Presentation Skills in Your Own Presentations

Effective Communication

Now that you have learned what effective communication presentation skills are and how to improve them, you may wonder how to apply them in your own presentations. Here are some steps that can help you apply effective communication presentation skills in your own presentations:

  • Identify the purpose and goal of your presentation. What do you want to achieve with your presentation? What do you want your audience to do, know, or feel after your presentation?
  • Analyze your audience. Who are they? What are their backgrounds, interests, needs, expectations, etc.? How can you tailor your message to suit them?
  • Select and research your topic. What is the main topic of your presentation? What are the subtopics or aspects that you want to cover? What are the sources of information that you can use?
  • Plan your presentation structure and outline. How will you organize your content into an introduction, a body, and a conclusion? What are the main points that you want to convey in each section? How will you transition from one point to another?
  • Create your presentation content. What are the words, sentences, and paragraphs that you will use to express your ideas? How will you use verbal communication techniques such as tone, pace, questions, etc.?
  • Design your presentation delivery. How will you use non-verbal communication techniques such as body language, voice projection, etc.? How will you use visual aids and tools such as slides, images, charts, videos, etc.?
  • Practice your presentation and get feedback. How will you rehearse your presentation? How will you simulate the actual presentation environment? How will you time yourself? How will you get feedback and make improvements?
  • Deliver your presentation and handle questions and challenges. How will you start and end your presentation? How will you engage and interact with your audience? How will you handle questions and challenges?

effective communication presentation skills

Effective communication presentation is a skill that can help you deliver your message with confidence and clarity to your audience. It can help you achieve personal and professional success in various situations where presentation skills are required or beneficial.

To improve your effective communication presentation skills, you should:

  • Research your topic and know it inside out.
  • Plan your presentation structure and outline.
  • Practice your presentation and get feedback.
  • Prepare for possible questions and challenges.
  • Use appropriate visual aids and tools.

To apply effective communication presentation skills in your presentations, you should:

  • Identify the purpose and goal of your presentation.
  • Analyze your audience.
  • Select and research your topic.
  • Create your presentation content.
  • Design your presentation delivery.
  • Deliver your presentation and handle questions and challenges.

We hope this article has helped you learn more about effective communication.

draft a presentation on effective ways to improve communication skills


What is an effective communication presentation.

Effective communication presentation is the ability to convey your message clearly, concisely, and convincingly to your audience. It is a skill that can help you achieve personal and professional success in various situations, such as giving a speech, pitching an idea, teaching a lesson, or delivering a report.

Why is effective communication presentation important?

Effective communication presentation is important because it can help you persuade, inform, educate, or entertain your audience. It can also help you enhance your confidence, clarity, and credibility as a presenter.

What are some examples of effective communication presentation skills?

Some examples of effective communication presentation skills are verbal communication, body language, voice projection, and visual aids. These skills can help you express your ideas, engage your audience, and support your message.

How can I improve my effective communication presentation skills?

You can improve your effective communication presentation skills by researching your topic, planning your presentation structure and outline, practicing your presentation and getting feedback, preparing for possible questions and challenges, and using appropriate visual aids and tools.

How can I apply effective communication presentation skills in my own presentations?

You can apply effective communication presentation skills in your own presentations by identifying the purpose and goal of your presentation, analyzing your audience, selecting and researching your topic, creating your presentation content, designing your presentation delivery, practicing your presentation and getting feedback, and delivering your presentation and handling questions and challenges.

How long should my presentation be?

The length of your presentation depends on your purpose, topic, audience, and format. A general rule of thumb is to allocate one minute per slide or one minute per main point. However, you should also consider the time limit, the attention span, and the expectations of your audience.

How should I start and end my presentation?

You should start and end your presentation with a strong and memorable statement that captures your audience’s attention and reinforces your message. You should also include a hook, an overview, a summary, and a call to action in your introduction and conclusion.

How should I deal with nervousness before or during my presentation?

Nervousness is a natural and common reaction to presenting in front of an audience. However, you can overcome it by preparing well , practicing often, breathing deeply, smiling confidently, focusing on your message, and enjoying the experience.

How should I use slides in my presentation?

Slides are a useful tool to enhance your presentation by adding variety, interest, and clarity to your message. However, you should not rely on them too much or use them as a script. You should use slides that are relevant, simple, and attractive. You should also explain or describe them when you introduce them.

How should I handle questions or challenges from my audience?

Questions or challenges from your audience are an opportunity to interact with them and demonstrate your knowledge and expertise. You should acknowledge and respect the questioner or challenger and their point of view. You should also address the question or challenge directly and confidently. You should redirect the question or challenge to the audience or to another topic if necessary.

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21 Ways To Improve Your Presentation Skills

Bailey Maybray

Published: April 07, 2023

You know the feeling of sitting through a boring presentation. A text distracts you. A noise outside pulls your gaze. Your dog begs for attention. By the time the presentation ends, you question why you needed to sit and listen in the first place.

Presentation Skills: A woman speaks before a crowd.

Effective presentation skills can stop you from boring an audience to oblivion. Delivering strong presentations can help you stand out as a leader, showcase your expertise, and build confidence.

Table of contents:

  • Presentation skills definition
  • Importance of presentation skills
  • How to improve presentation skills
  • Effective presentation skills
  • Presentation skills for executives

→ Free Download: 10 PowerPoint Presentation Templates [Access Now]

Presentation Skills Definition

Presentation skills include anything you need to create and deliver clear, effective presentations to an audience. This includes creating a compelling set of slides , ensuring the information flows, and keeping your audience engaged.

Speakers with strong presentation skills can perform the following tasks:

  • Bring together different sources of information to form a compelling narrative
  • Hook audiences with a strong beginning and end
  • Ensure audiences engage with their content through questions or surveys
  • Understand what their audience wants and needs from their presentation

Importance of Presentation Skills

At some point in your career, you will present something. You might pitch a startup to a group of investors or show your research findings to your manager at work. Those in leading or executive roles often deliver presentations on a weekly or monthly basis.

Improving your presentation skills betters different aspects of your working life, including the following:

Communication: Improving your presentation skills can make you a better communicator with your co-workers and friends.

Confidence: 75% of people fear public speaking. By working on your presentation skills, you can gain confidence when speaking in front of a crowd.

Creativity: You learn to understand how to use imagery and examples to engage an audience.

Management: Presentations involve pulling together information to form a succinct summary, helping you build project and time management skills.

How To Improve Presentation Skills

1. create an outline.

Before designing slides and writing a script, outline your presentation. Start with your introduction, segue into key points you want to make, and finish with a conclusion.

2. Practice, Practice, Practice

Almost 8 in 10 professionals practice their presentations for at least an hour. So, practice your presentation in the mirror or to a close friend.

3. Start With a Hook

When presenting, grab your audience with a hook. Consider starting with a surprising statistic or a thoughtful question before diving into the core information.

4. Stay Focused on Your Topic

You might want to cover everything under the sun, but information overload can overwhelm your audience. Instead, stay focused on what you want to cover. Aim for key points and avoid including unnecessary details.

5. Remember To Introduce Yourself

At the beginning of the presentation, introduce yourself. Kill any tension in the room by mentioning your name, your role, and any other helpful details. You could even mention a fun fact about yourself, putting the audience at ease.

6. Work on Your Body Language

55% of people look to nonverbal communication when judging a presentation. Straighten your back, minimize unnecessary gestures, and keep your voice confident and calm. Remember to work on these aspects when practicing.

7. Memorize Structure, Not Words

You might feel better knowing exactly what you want to say. But skip the script and stick to memorizing the key points of your presentation. For example, consider picking three to four phrases or insights you want to mention for each part of your presentation rather than line-by-line memorization.

8. Learn Your Audience

Before crafting a killer outline and slide deck, research your audience. Find out what they likely already know, such as industry jargon, and where they might need additional information. Remember: You're presenting for them, not you.

9. Reframe Your Anxiety as Excitement

A study conducted by Harvard Business School demonstrates that reframing your anxiety as excitement can improve performance. For example, by saying simple phrases out loud, such as “I’m excited,” you then adopt an opportunity-oriented mentality.

10. Get Comfortable With the Setting

If you plan to present in person, explore the room. Find where you’re going to stand and deliver your presentation. Practice looking into the seats. By decreasing the number of unknowns, you can clear your head and focus on the job.

11. Get Familiar With Technology

Presenting online has unique challenges, such as microphone problems and background noise. Before a Zoom presentation, ensure your microphone works, clean up your background, test your slides, and consider any background noise.

12. Think Positively

Optimistic workers enjoy faster promotions and happier lives. By reminding yourself of the positives — for example, your manager found your last presentation impressive — you can shake off nerves and find joy in the process.

13. Tell a Story

To engage your audience, weave storytelling into your presentation — more than 5 in 10 people believe stories hold their focus during a presentation. Consider ways to connect different parts of your slides into a compelling narrative.

14. Prepare for Questions

At the end of your presentation, your audience will likely have questions. Brainstorm different questions and potential answers so you’re prepared.

15. Maintain Eye Contact

Eye contact signals honesty. When possible, maintain eye contact with your audience. For in-person presentations, pay attention to each audience member. For online ones, stare at your camera lens as you deliver.

16. Condense Your Presentation

After you finish the first draft of your outline, think about ways to condense it. Short and sweet often keeps people interested instead of checking their phones.

17. Use Videos

Keep your audience’s attention by incorporating video clips when relevant. For example, videos can help demonstrate examples or explain difficult concepts.

18. Engage With Your Audience

Almost 8 in 10 professionals view presentations as boring. Turn the tide by engaging with your audience. Encourage audience participation by asking questions or conducting a live survey.

19. Present Slowly and Pause Frequently

When you get nervous, you talk faster. To combat this, remember to slow yourself down when practicing. Place deep pauses throughout your presentation, especially when transitioning between slides, as it gives you time to breathe and your audience time to absorb.

20. Start and End With a Summary

A summary at the start of a presentation can pique your audience’s interest. One at the end brings everything together, highlighting key points your audience should take with them.

21. Ask for Feedback

You will never deliver the perfect presentation, so ask for feedback. Talk to your managers about where you could improve. Consider surveying your audience for an unbiased look into your presentation skills.

Effective Presentation Skills

Effective presentation skills include communicating clearly, presenting with structure, and engaging with the audience.

As an example, say a content manager is presenting a quarterly review to their team. They start off with a summary. Their introduction mentions an unprecedented 233% growth in organic traffic — numbers their team has not seen in years. Immediately, the presenter grabs their team’s attention. Now, everyone wants to know how they achieved that in one quarter.

Alternatively, think of an entrepreneur delivering their pitch to a group of investors. They start with a question: How many of you struggle to stay awake at work? They then segue into an exciting product designed to improve the sleep quality of working professionals. Their presentation includes videos demonstrating the science behind sleep and surprising statistics about the demand for their product.

Both examples demonstrate effective presentation skills. They incorporate strong attention grabbers, summaries, and attempts to engage the audience.

Think back to strong presentations you viewed as an audience member. Ask yourself: What made them so memorable, and how can I incorporate those elements into my presentations?

Presentation Skills for Executives

Presentations take up a significant portion of an executive’s workload. Executives regularly showcase key company initiatives, team changes, quarterly and annual reviews, and more. Improving your presentation skills as a leader can help with different parts of your job, such as:

Trust: Delivering great, effective presentations can build trust between you and your team.

Confidence: Most people dread presentations — so a strong presenter projects the confidence needed by a leader.

Emotional intelligence: A great presentation taps into the audience’s perspectives, helping executives improve their emotional intelligence .

Expertise: Presentations help executives display their subject-matter expertise, making employees safe in their hands.

Delegation: At times, executives might need to pull information from different sources for a presentation — improving their ability to delegate as managers.

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12 Crucial Tips To Develop Effective Presentation Skills

12 Crucial Tips To Develop Effective Presentation Skills

Learn how to create and deliver presentations that inspire and captivate an audience!

Crafting effective presentations is challenging. But growth happens by applying key effective presentation tips around strong narratives, visuals, speaking skills and adapting to listeners. With practice, lacklustre slideshows transform into inspiring speeches that captivate and motivate audiences powerfully.

Specifically, winning over people happens quickly if your introduction grabs their attention seamlessly. Suppose you compared graduation to a butterfly emerging, still learning to fly despite inexperience. Imagery around this common vulnerability connects groups emotionally . Or you could highlight recent workplace statistics that show the tough road ahead for graduates. This data underscores the urgency to prepare. Either approach engages minds to hear more. Classic storytelling does that powerfully.

Whether facing sceptical executives or colleagues hoping for fresh inspiration, applying proven frameworks leads to increased clarity, resonance and collective unity between all involved in forwarding constructive dialogues ultimately. That represents true presentation mastery in action.

Let’s explore effective presentation skills and what you can do to make your future presentation more effective.

1. Set the Stage

The opening moments of a presentation set the tone and capture the audience’s interest. Employing strategic techniques here makes an impactful first impression.

Engage listeners instantly by starting with a relevant anecdote, surprising statistic, quote, or rhetorical question focused on the idea behind the talk. Share an illustrative story showcasing why the subject matters. Use visual aids like images, videos, charts, or diagrams to complement your words. Structure the introduction crisply around three key points to convey the purpose rapidly.

Creating momentum from the start, emphasising significance, and establishing expectations keep the audience attentive and ready to hear more. Whether launching a 5-minute lightning pitch or a 2-hour seminar, the same principles enable any presenter to shine from their opening sentence. Wield these start techniques to command focus from the first slide.

Presentation Skills Immersive Five Days

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2. Tell a Compelling Story

Audiences emotionally connect with narratives . Blend personal stories into presentations to make points memorably. For example, open with an anecdote showcasing the idea’s genesis or share a customer’s experience illustrating pain points.

Choose illustrative examples featuring real people when possible. Vet anecdotes beforehand to hone timing and phrases, avoiding rambles. Practise fluid storytelling transitions tying narratives back to core arguments.

Weaving personalised accounts makes effective presentations that are relatable and engaging. Integrate facts with anecdotes using a narrative structure that focuses on relatability, emotional connection, challenges, solutions, and positive outcomes. This approach amplifies the impact by allowing audiences to see aspects of their own experiences reflected in the stories you tell. Use this method to create a strong bond and resonance with your audience.

Does your team need more support in storytelling? Then our Storytelling for Business In-House Training could be the right learning method for you.

3. Engage the Audience Psychologically

Even before taking the stage, get inside the hearts and minds of attendees . Ask – why are they here? What outcomes do they want? What objections or questions might they have?

Customise messaging and examples to resonate with given audiences’ backgrounds and knowledge levels. Weave in shared context around cultural events or local flair. Display empathy, addressing inherent needs and pain points. Feature diverse cultures representative of viewers in visuals to foster psychological safety.

You can also pepper strategic questions throughout presentations to continually re-engage listeners. Alternatively, have audience members introduce themselves or share relatable stories upfront to form connections. Or orchestrate small group discussions on key topics between segments.

Keeping presentations mentally stimulating enhances retention and impact. Structure content to feel like a captivating conversation rather than a sterile lecture. Lifting these psychological engagement techniques consistently yields more attentive, receptive crowds.

Presentation Skills In-House Tailor Made Training

If you are looking for In-House Presentation Skills Training for a group or teams, please see our

4. Visualise Beyond Slides

While slides provide helpful talking point anchors , creative visuals fully immerse audiences, and infographics simplify complex data relationships. Product photos and video clips demonstrate functionality clearly. Customer journey maps reveal pain points.

Tailor visual formats to best communicate ideas, not just software defaults. Hand sketches’ rawness profoundly impacts. Physical props allow hands-on engagement. Printed design canvases facilitate notetaking. Whiteboard in real-time for flexibility.

Creatively transition between design elements and visuals , keeping viewers actively engaged. Thoughtfully displaying key concepts taps into visual learning styles, boosting comprehension. 

5. Optimise Timing and Pacing

Commanding an audience’s attention span hinges upon meticulously optimising cadence. Savvy presenters first gradually quicken the pace during opening passages, steadily building momentum before diving deeper into weighty details. This pulls listeners in rather than overwhelming them initially. Next, provide recaps highlighting key takeaways when transitioning between topics. Briefly summarising core concepts realigns focus, acting as a mental anchor point amidst churning tides of information.

Additionally, strategically sculpt the speech’s very rhythm over the presentation’s arc to further facilitate sustained engagement. Notably, quicken tempos during urgent sections to viscerally convey their immediacy but then slow back down while unpacking emotional moments, letting their subtle profundities fully resonate before advancing the underlying agenda. Regularly oscillating between such faster-paced peaks and contemplative valleys sustains active mental engagement, whereas monotonously rambling on in a steady state risks losing participants to daydreams.

Finally, establish consistent structural patterns within sections through judicious use of parallelism devices. State a problem, then smoothly bridge into unveiling its corresponding solution. Present a cause first, briefly building anticipation, then dramatically reveal the ensuing effect. Repeating key phrases refrains echoes concepts, drumming home core ideas through repetition’s power. Ultimately, words divorced from their delivery lack impact. Master not just the statements themselves but also the punctuated pacing applied to narrate ideas with intention.

6. Master Effective Body Language

Even speeches flawlessly scripted shall ring hollow, lacking authentic presentation delivery spark. Speakers must master subtle nonverbal elements projecting genuineness that captivates crowds. Frequently recording practice sessions allows for diagnosing body language, movement and facial expressions. Refining vocal tonality, strategically making eye contact and tailoring pace to reactions connect intellectually and emotionally.

Cascading one’s gaze evenly across full audiences signals engagement intimacy. Pausing amidst weighty statements affords gravity space to land impact. Leaning slightly forward telegraphs sharing mindspace up on the stage. Open palms foster inclusive energy when gesturing participating listeners to join imaginative journeys. Nodding along profound contributions validates two-way dialogue, building bonds.

Internalising advanced techniques sculpt ether until presentations themselves feel like conversations, mutually sparking both passive spectators and presenters alike into active idea exchanges to advance collective consciousness. Briefly expose obstacles overcome, demonstrating grit and tenacity, so speakers seem approachable as fellow travellers. Ever refine pacing and tone continuously based on listeners’ real-time responses using the crowd’s energy, arcing it back towards critical concepts. Polished nonverbal dynamics exponentially amplify intellectual and emotional resonance.

7. Embrace Silence and Pauses

Though counterintuitive initially, strategic silence profoundly punctuates ideas better than many words strung together might, giving audiences reflective space. Savvy presenters have long mastered employing intentional pauses, deftly drawing listeners inward to lean closer before resuming carefully crafted speech .

Pauses grant gravity time needed preceding pivotal revelations, building delicious anticipation. Subtly smiling throughout sustains atmospheric composure, conveying nonverbal confidence until unveiling impactful truths once tension peaks. Silent countdowns stretching to five landing punchlines create comedic peaks of mirth echoing louder for the contrast conjured.

Next-level techniques utilise the open canvas of silence to insert post-punchline comedic breathers. Allowing certain jokes spatial room for laughter cements organic engagement unspoiled by prematurely bursting in overly eager with next agenda items hustling onwards. Masterfully balancing the ebb and flow of rushing speech versus letting well-placed pauses land finds that golden ratio, keeping even restless listeners perpetually riveted.

8. Create Interactive Experiences

Beyond linear speeches, participation expands impact. Orchestrate think-pair-share discussions debriefing key topics in small groups. Distribute simple surveys polling perspectives on issues. Engage volunteers in roleplaying scenarios.

Further, captivate modern groups accustomed to entertainment rushes by gamifying interactivity. Set exciting countdown timers introducing friendly concept review competitions. Reward speedy, accurate responses publicly, praising high scorers’ impressive grasp. Empower crowds steering direction through unpredictable real-time voting pivots.

Moreover, recognising attendees themselves represents vast wisdom. Respectfully elicit personal stories or professional backgrounds contextually relevant. Validate and bridge diverse reactions into unified takeaways rather than judging binary rights or wrongs. Leaning into authentic dialogue fosters human connections impossible through rigid scripts alone.

9. Navigate Q&A Sessions Expertly

Savvy presenters wield post-speech Q&As , advancing agendas through audience-sourced questions. First, tactfully repeat inquiries aloud ensuring whole rooms hear exchanges. Validate curiosity before artfully bridging queries back towards key messages.

When facing irrelevant tangents, politely pivot proceedings by finding common ground. Note Interesting perspectives before redirecting groups. If asked overly advanced queries given contexts, offer a meeting separately later or commenting below articles online.

For combative remarks, defuse tensions through empathy and openness. Paraphrase objectors’ views non-judgmentally before gently noting seeming disagreements. Finally, conclude sessions positively highlighting progress made towards shared goals . Frame takeaways are lifting all towards wisdom.

10. Structure Presentations Effectively

Beyond sharp slides , structure proves paramount. The first limit points to three maximum per section, enabling simplicity. Next, strategically sequence arguments, building dramatic tension towards conclusions. Finally, end where you’ve begun circling back, bookending stories with palpable symmetry.

Conceptualise narrative flows mirroring fables, rising actions crescendoing into climatic pivots before denouements tie residual threads back into coherent tapestries. Early subtle setups allow insights to manifest naturally when pieces cascade together into collective comprehension within groups’ minds. Incrementally guide audiences along ever more intellectually rewarding journeys toward impressive finales, facilitating satisfying closures.

Also, balance coverage evenly across factors when viable to avoid lopsidedness skewing understanding. Paralleling sections foster illuminating juxtapositions underlining salience. Interconnecting commentaries smoothed between standalone segments unifies talks through elegant consistency, momentum and rhythm felt intrinsically from section to section.

11. Conclude with Impact

Final memorable impressions are formed in closing moments. Wrap up by deliberately employing impactful concluding tactics. First, restate the opening hook that originally grabbed interest while reminding audiences of the key ground covered. Echo meaningful phrases and examples shared earlier exhibiting perspectives collectively gained.

Next, clearly summarise 2-3 key takeaways, reinforcing core messages and insights for audiences to retain. celebrating any progress made so far. Encourage groups by applauding their time invested towards shared goals achieved up to this point. Outline beneficial next steps aligned with awakened potentials going forward beyond the presentation’s scope.

Then, unveil clear calls-to-action aligned with the shared vision promised early on. Outline possibilities awaiting activation by willing and ready participants committed to courageously enacting conferred wisdom as empowered changemakers.

12. Continuously Adapt and Refine Your Approach

Even experienced presenters should keep honing effective presentation skills, embracing an iterative growth mindset. Routinely request qualitative feedback from audiences on what resonated, including nonverbal dynamics noticed. Ask which sections are connected best and why.

Reviewing behind-the-scenes preparations often reveals impact optimisation opportunities. Analyse where pacing dragged, language confused, graphics missed the mark, or transitions lost listeners. Contrast weaknesses and strengths to reinforce positives while targeting areas for improvement.

Experiment with tailored delivery across mediums like intimate physical events or large-scale broadcasts. Consistently refine personal presentation style to channel messages powerfully.

Remember, presentations represent conceptual vessels, not destinations. Spotlight purpose and content rather than perfection. Value constructive feedback for incrementally mastering flexibility over time through openness and discernment, separating signal from noise constructively.

Impact Factory’s Presentation Training

Impact Factory spotlights years of delivering bespoke virtual, in-person, online or hybrid coaching unmatched transforming presenters worldwide. Experienced trainers employ engaging person-centred approaches, guiding many clients annually to commanding stage presence across diverse presentation contexts, from speeches to high-stakes boardroom pitches.

Specific courses include the classic Presentation Skills course (also available as tailored training ), Advanced Presentation In-House Training or course for refining sophisticated delivery, Storytelling for Business focused on impactful narrative, and PowerPoint for supplementing talks visually. Expert trainers transfer decades of field experience, distilling techniques that facilitate memorable speeches.

Reach out to our world-class team to learn more about current offerings matching your specific presentation goals and skill level needs.

Why should you not crowd your slides?

Cluttering slides is akin to overstuffing a suitcase: it becomes hard to find what you need. When slides are overloaded, key messages get lost in the shuffle. A minimalist approach focuses the audience’s attention on what truly matters, ensuring your main points stand out and are remembered.

What are the biggest mistakes people make when giving presentations?

Many presenters fall into traps like speaking to the slides instead of the audience, losing track of time, or wandering off-topic. Another common error is not rehearsing, which can lead to a lack of confidence or fluency during the presentation. Tailoring the content to resonate with your audience’s interests and background is crucial for a successful presentation .

Should you read slides when presenting?

Slides are a visual tool, not a teleprompter. Reading them word-for-word can make your presentation feel scripted and disengage your audience. Instead, use slides as a cue for discussing key points more expansively. This approach keeps your delivery natural and engaging, encouraging a more interactive and dynamic presentation experience.

Further Reading:

Here are resources to guide you in the right direction on your journey to effective presentation skills mastery:

  • 5-Day Presentation with Impact Immersive – Are you serious about improving your skills and want to dive deep into proven techniques? Find out more about our intensive presentation skills training course.
  • The Reason Why Your Workplace Presentation Skills Are So Important – Effective presentation skills are necessary in any modern workplace. Let’s explore all the ways they can be beneficial to you and your career.
  • Benefits Of Presentation Training Courses – Do you want to build more effective presentation skills but are hesitant to join a course? Here’s how the training can help you.

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draft a presentation on effective ways to improve communication skills

How to Improve Communication Skills: 10 Tactics

Effective communication is vital for success in both personal and professional spheres. It

enhances your ability to connect with others, resolves conflicts, and leads to better relationships and career growth.

In this article, our experts at Better Speech will break down ten key tactics to refine and improve your communication skills. By understanding and implementing each tactic, you can not only improve the quality of your communication but also your relationships and life as a whole.

Maintain Clarity and Conciseness

Leverage Non-Verbal Communication Express Empathy Ask Questions

Understand your Audience

Embrace Feedback

Display Confidence

Practice and Learn

Getting Started on Your Journey to Confident Communication

Communication Skills

1: Listen Actively

Active listening is essential for effective communication. It involves fully concentrating on the

speaker, understanding their message, responding thoughtfully, and remembering what is being said. You can practice active listening by focusing entirely on the speaker, avoiding distractions, and confirming understanding through nodding or paraphrasing their words.

2: Maintain Clarity and Conciseness

Being clear and concise helps in delivering messages that are easy to understand and quick to grasp. Plan your communications carefully to stay on point, use straightforward language, and avoid unnecessary details that might cloud your main points. The goal is to convey your

message in as few words as possible, without sacrificing clarity.

3: Leverage Non-Verbal Communication

Non-verbal cues significantly affect how your messages are received. To communicate

effectively, ensure your body language, facial expressions, and eye contact match your words. For instance, maintaining eye contact shows confidence and helps engage your audience, while appropriate gestures can emphasize your points.

4: Express Empathy

Empathy involves understanding and sharing the feelings of another person, which enhances

communication by creating a stronger connection. To express empathy, listen to understand

rather than reply, acknowledge others' feelings, and respond in a way that shows you appreciate their perspective.

5: Ask Questions

Asking questions not only clarifies your understanding but also engages your conversation

partner. Use open-ended questions to invite expansive answers, and ask clarifying questions

when details are unclear. This tactic helps deepen conversations and fosters better

understanding between all parties involved.

6: Understand your Audience

Effective communicators adjust their message based on who they are speaking to. Consider the knowledge level, interests, and expectations of your audience. This personalization makes your message more relevant and engaging, thereby increasing the likelihood of a positive reception.

7: Embrace Feedback

Feedback is a powerful tool for improving communication skills. Offer constructive criticism that focuses on specific aspects of the communication, not the person. When receiving feedback, view it as an opportunity to grow and improve your skills. Engage in discussions about feedback to clarify points and develop strategies for improvement.

8: Display Confidence

Confidence influences how your messages are perceived. Build your confidence by preparing thoroughly, practicing regularly, and focusing on positive outcomes. Confidence grows with experience, so seek out opportunities to communicate in various settings.

9: Practice and Learn

Communication skills can always be improved. Engage in continuous learning through

workshops, seminars, and relevant reading materials. Practice your skills regularly in both

professional and personal settings, and be open to feedback to help refine your approach.

10: Seek Speech Therapy

If you find certain aspects of communication particularly challenging, consider professional help such as speech therapy. Speech-language pathologists, like our experts at Better Speech, offer tailored programs that address individual needs, from stuttering to voice modulation, ensuring that each person can achieve their communication potential.

Embrace Clarity with R Sound Speech Therapy Today!

Better Speech Affordable Prices

Improving your communication skills is a worthwhile endeavor that can enhance almost every

aspect of your life. By implementing these tactics, from active listening to seeking specialized therapy, you'll find that you can communicate more clearly, confidently, and effectively.

Remember, the path to better communication is marked by continuous practice and openness to learning. To get started, find your speech therapist today. At Better Speech, we know you deserve speech therapy that works. Our team specializes in diagnosing and treating a variety of speech and language disorders. Reach out to our skilled Speech-Language Pathologists for guidance on managing and improving communication skills. At Better Speech, we offer online speech therapy services convenient for you and tailored to your child's individual needs. Our services are affordable and effective - get Better Speech now.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should i practice these techniques to see improvement.

Regular practice is crucial for improvement. Daily exercises, such as engaging in conversations with diverse groups, practicing speech exercises, or reflective journaling about your communication experiences, can yield noticeable results over time.

How can I measure improvement in my communication skills?

How does sleep affect my ability to communicate effectively, what are the most common barriers to effective communication, what should i do if i feel nervous about receiving feedback, how can speech therapy specifically help improve professional life.

About the Author

Aycen Zambuto

Aycen Zambuto

I’m a seasoned educator in speech therapy with over six years of experience helping people navigate challenges in communication. Throughout this time, I’ve found joy in guiding individuals through a variety of therapeutic journeys, from toddlers with apraxia to seniors with dysphonia.

I’m passionate about demystifying this complex world of speech therapy and helping readers around the globe achieve clear and effective communication. When I’m not writing about speech, you’ll often find me reading, traveling or spending time with friends and family.

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Communication Strategies: Presenting with Impact

Gain skills and techniques to engage, inform and inspire others, improving your ability to communicate as a leader.

All Start Dates

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM ET

2 consecutive days

Registration Deadline

June 30, 2024

November 24, 2024

Communication Strategies Program Overview

Communication strategies: presenting with impact, a public speaking course.

Public speaking—whether delivering a presentation, making a pitch, or leading a group discussion—can cause even the most confident leader to break a sweat. Yet communicating your message with poise, confidence, and conviction is an essential leadership skill. Mastering your public speaking and presentation skills will enable you to inspire your audience as well as build trust and credibility.

Through oral presentations and small group activities, you will put proven public speaking techniques and tools into practice, test out new approaches, and learn to communicate clearly and confidently. Discover the powerful impact of storytelling and practical persuasion skills to authentically illustrate your message. Learn how to effectively organize materials to blend analytical and emotional content into a compelling story, and incorporate dynamic introductions and memorable endings into your presentations.

Who Should Register for this Public Speaking Course

This communication program is appropriate for business professionals at all levels of experience who would like to enhance their communication skills to succeed in delivering impactful presentations. It is ideal for anyone in a role that requires ceremonial speaking, persuasive speaking, or any other type of public speaking, regardless of industry or years of experience.

All participants will earn a Certificate of Participation from the Harvard Division of Continuing Education

Participants must be fluent in English to participate fully in fast-moving discussions and exercises.

Benefits of Communication Strategies: Presenting With Impact

This communication strategies program is designed to offer new techniques to improve your public speaking skills. Key takeaways from the program will help you improve your ability to persuade and influence your audience in large- and small-group settings.

During this public speaking training course, you will:

  • Learn guiding principles of making effective presentations
  • Build confidence in your presentation abilities
  • Cultivate your personal leadership and communication style
  • Learn strategies on handling hostile audiences

“Jill [Slye] shared invaluable tips that have helped me to reduce my anxiety and negative self-talk around my presentations while conveying a message that encourages others to affect change through empowering presentations.” — Lizbeth Sanches-Acre

The curriculum for this communication strategies program is designed to be interactive and hands-on. You will practice the skills and techniques you are learning in real-time through small group activities and oral presentations during the program.

The curriculum will cover topics such as:

  • Effective delivery skills involving presence, vocal variety, body language, narratives and humor, and handling nerves
  • Crafting clear and concise messages
  • Understanding and connecting with your audience
  • Techniques for effective handling of Q&A sessions
  • Ways to gain buy-in and influence your audience
  • Strategies for online communications, webinars, podcasts, Zoom platforms, etc.

This public speaking course is offered as a two-day on-campus program in our state-of-the-art classroom space in the heart of historic Harvard University. Program tuition is $2,990 plus the cost of travel.

Considering this program?

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  • Influence and Persuasion in Leadership
  • Becoming a Leader: Developing Your Style and Making Sound Decisions

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  • Communication Overview
  • Honing Your Personal Communication Style
  • Developing Audience Centered Content
  • Presentations
  • Strategies for Online Communications
  • Leadership Communication Model

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Jill abruzese slye, certificates of leadership excellence.

The Certificates of Leadership Excellence (CLE) are designed for leaders with the desire to enhance their business acumen, challenge current thinking, and expand their leadership skills.

This program is one of several CLE qualifying programs. Register today and get started earning your certificate.

How will this program help me improve my public speaking skills?

This program will help you improve your public speaking skills through hands-on practice of communication techniques and new approaches. As part of the program, you will engage in group exercises and oral presentations where you will receive feedback from the instructor and your peers to help you improve your skills in real time.

How will improving public speaking help me advance my career?

Public speaking is an important skill for any business professional, regardless of industry or role. To advance your career, you must possess the ability to convey your message with clarity and lead group discussions with confidence, regardless of the specific situation. Developing the techniques and strategies to communicate effectively will help build trust in your leadership skills more broadly.

What skills or experience is needed before enrolling in this program?

Participants do not need any specific experience or skills to enroll in this program. It is open to any business professional interested in improving their public speaking skills and their ability to communicate effectively and persuasively.

Harvard Division of Continuing Education

The Division of Continuing Education (DCE) at Harvard University is dedicated to bringing rigorous academics and innovative teaching capabilities to those seeking to improve their lives through education. We make Harvard education accessible to lifelong learners from high school to retirement.

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12 Ways to Improve Your Presentation Skills [for Work & Life]

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According to research by the National Institute of Mental Health, around 75% of people list public speaking as their number one fear , even higher than their fear of death! 

At the same time, though, presentation skills are among the most in-demand skills for just about any job out there . 

Want to get over your fear of public speaking, improve your presentation skills, and give your career a huge boost?

You’re in the right place! This article is here to tell you everything you need to know about presentation skills from A to Z: 

  • 9 Types of Presentations and Delivery Methods
  • 12 Steps to Giving Better Presentations
  • 5 Ways to Improve Your Presentation Skills

How to Add Your Presentation Skills to Your Resume

And more! Let’s dive in. 

What Are Presentation Skills?

Presentation skills are soft skills that allow you to present information clearly in front of an audience.

As such, these skills come in handy in all kinds of situations, including:

  • Work. For example, giving a presentation in front of your team, pitching a new idea, etc.
  • School or university. E.g., giving an oral presentation about a subject or presenting a master's thesis.
  • Personal life. E.g. giving a speech at your best friend’s wedding or a toast at a restaurant.

No matter the situation, people with strong presentation skills typically possess the following skills:

  • Body language
  • Public speaking
  • Communication skills
  • Emotional intelligence

Why Are Presentation Skills Important?

But, what exactly makes presentation skills so important in basically every life area? 

Here are their most noteworthy benefits: 

  • Increased employability. Presentation skills come in handy for many positions across all industries. 70% of respondents in a Prezi study said that presentation skills are critical for career success. As such, presentation skills are transferable skills that can instantly make you more employable.
  • Higher academic performance. In the US, most university classes involve a presentation assignment or two. As such, being good at presenting is essential if you want to succeed academically.
  • Effective networking. Having great presentation skills translates into great communication skills, which, in turn, helps you get better at professional networking .
  • Improved confidence. Being able to speak in front of an audience can be a serious confidence booster, easily translating to other areas in life.

9 Types of Presentation and Delivery Methods

There are several types of presentations out there. 

Some presentations are meant to inspire the audience (such as motivational talks), while others are simply meant to instruct or inform (HR giving a presentation about company policies to new employees). 

Here are the five most common types of presentations, explained: 

  • Persuasive presentations are meant to persuade the audience to make a decision, support a cause, side with a particular argument, and so on. A salesman pitching a product to a potential customer is an example of a persuasive presentation.
  • Informative presentations aim to inform the audience about a topic, procedure, product, benefit, etc. An example of an informative presentation is a weatherman reading the weather report on TV.
  • Inspirational presentations are meant to inspire the audience and potentially boost their confidence or morale. In a business setting, inspirational presentations are meant to motivate employees to perform better or get through tough times. In day-to-day life, on the other hand, an inspirational presentation could be trying to motivate a friend to do better at school.
  • Educational presentations , just like the name implies, aim to educate the audience. Professors giving a lecture or tour guides speaking to museum visitors are examples of educational presentations.
  • Instructional presentations are about instructing or guiding the audience on a set of guidelines, a new policy, a certain law, etc. An example of an instructional presentation is a flight attendant instructing passengers on what to do in case of an emergency.

On the same note, there are also 4 common ways presentations are delivered: 

  • Extemporaneous presentations. These presentations are planned, but you deliver them without preparation.
  • Manuscript presentations are presentations you deliver based on a script or notes.
  • Impromptu presentations aren’t planned but rather delivered on the spot.
  • Memorized presentations are those you learn by heart from start to finish.

11 Tips on How to Give Better Presentations

Looking to improve your presentation skills?

There’s good news and bad news.

The good news is that, with enough practice, you can get really good at delivering presentations.

The bad news, though, is that just like any other soft skill, in order to get good at delivering presentations, you’ll have to practice a lot.

To help get you started, below, we’re going to cover 12 of our best tips on how to improve your presentation skills, starting with:

#1. Prepare your presentation in advance

Impromptu presentations don’t happen that often in real life. Most times, you’ll have enough time to prepare for your presentation. 

Needless to say, you should use that time to your advantage. Don’t just make mental notes of what you’ll say during your presentation and call it a day, but actually plan it out from start to finish. 

When preparing your presentation in advance, make sure to consider the following points:

  • What type of presentation are you making?
  • What is your speech delivery method?
  • How are you going to grab the audience’s attention from the get-go?
  • What are the main points you need to cover?
  • What is the best way to make the conclusion memorable?
  • How much time do you have at your disposal?
  • What visual aids and multimedia can you use?
  • What does the audience expect to see/hear?

#2. Practice as much as possible

Just like with any other soft skill, the best way to hone your presentation skills is to practice as much as possible.

Some ways you can practice your presentation skills are:

  • In front of a mirror or in front of your friends and family.
  • Watch TED talks to get inspired and learn what good presentation skills look like.
  • Read books on communication, presentation, and public speaking.
  • Take extensive notes of what you need to improve. 
  • Record and time yourself when doing presentations.
  • Hire a public speaking coach on Fiverr or another platform.
  • Take a public speaking course at your local community college.

The more you practice, the better your presentation skills are going to get.

Also, when practicing, make sure to pay attention to your tonality, body language, and whether you’re using a lot of crutch words .

#3. Exercise

Yes, really.

Exercise can help improve your presentation skills!

Some ways it does so are:

  • It boosts the levels of neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline, all of which are known to improve your mood and regulate your anxiety. 
  • It improves your ability to focus and pay attention, benefits which can last for up to two hours after your workout .
  • It strengthens and protects your memory, making it easy to recall words. 

Now, when it comes to how much you should exercise, that can differ from one person to the next.

We say - find a golden mean that works best for you. If you’re not big on exercising, you can always start small with something casual like biking to work or playing a sport once or twice a week. 

#4. Arrive early

By arriving early for your presentation, you can deal with any possible setbacks (e.g. mic not working, USB failure, wardrobe malfunction, etc). 

This will give you plenty of time to start your presentation on your terms, instead of running around trying to fix things at the last minute. 

Not to mention, in certain situations arriving early can also help you to prepare mentally and emotionally for the upcoming presentation. 

Obviously, a casual presentation in front of coworkers won’t require much emotional preparation. But if you have to, say, pitch a marketing idea to your clients or address a room full of strangers, getting to exchange some words with them before the presentation could break the ice and make it easier to engage with them later on. 

#5. Know your audience

You should always keep your audience in mind when making (and delivering) a presentation. 

At the end of the day, if your message is not tailored to its audience, chances are, it’s going to fall flat.

If your audience is a group of 50-somethings, high-level executives, chances are they won’t get your Rick and Morty references or appreciate any attempts to keep the presentation light, casual, and humorous. 

Instead, stick to talking about facts and figures without any joking around, use straightforward language, and avoid over-the-top body language while delivering the presentation. 

If on the other hand, you’re delivering a presentation to your class of 20-somethings, then you’re a lot more likely to make an impact if you joke around, make references, and make the presentation more casual.

In short, if you want your presentation to carry as much impact as possible, make sure to think about who you’re presenting to. 

#6. Use Relaxation Techniques

Even the most seasoned public speakers experience some level of anxiety before giving a presentation.

To make sure nerves and anxiety don’t throw you off your A-game, you can take advantage of relaxation techniques. 

One of the simplest (and most effective) ways to relax before a presentation is to breathe.  

When we say breathing, though, we don’t mean the automatic in-and-out we do to stay alive. We mean taking deep, relaxing breaths from your stomach while being mindful of what you’re doing. 

Here’s how breathing mindfully before your presentation can help you give a better presentation: 

  • Calms your nerves
  • Reduces stress 
  • Helps with anxiety 

To practice mindful breathing, focus on breathing from your stomach and push your stomach out each time you inhale. When you’re inhaling and exhaling, count to at least three for each breath. 

Keep doing this and you’ll soon start feeling more relaxed. 

#7. Acknowledge That You’re Nervous

People appreciate honesty. 

If you go on stage feeling extremely nervous, use this neat little trick:

Instead of trying to play it cool, simply acknowledge that you’re feeling nervous by straight-up saying it.

Chances are, a very large chunk of your audience feels exactly the same way about public speaking, and you’ll build up some rapport just like that!

This same exact tip even applies to job interviews. You can simply tell the recruiters that you’re feeling nervous and need a minute - that’s totally acceptable!

Unless you’re applying for a job in sales, the job interviewer is not going to be evaluating you on how good you are at passing interviews.

#8. Tell stories

Storytelling is a powerful presentation tool. According to the Guardian, 63% of presentation attendees remember stories , while only 5% remember statistics.

That’s because a good story can take the audience on a journey, intrigue them, inspire them, and motivate them. In turn, they’re much more likely to remember your presentation.

There are several ways you can go about incorporating stories into your presentation. 

One is to tie your own stories, along with what you experienced, learned, or observed, to make your argument more impactful and relatable. Alternatively, you can also create a story for the sake of the presentation that can be just as impactful in driving your point across. 

Keep in mind, though, that not every presentation requires storytelling. If your presentation is packed with data and stats showing how you managed to improve profits by 20% in the last quarter, for example, then you don’t really need to include a story in there to make it impactful. 

#9. Be humorous

This one’s quite self-explanatory; as much as you can, be humorous during your presentation. It helps ease tension, get the attention of everyone in the room, and connect with them more effectively. 

Now, some people are born with humor. If you’re one of them, cracking a joke here and there should come very naturally to you. 

Otherwise, you can practice your presentation in front of your friends and family and prepare your jokes in advance. If your mock audience laughs at your jokes, chances are, so will your real audience!

#10. Use visual aids and media

Using visuals and other media forms (e.g. music, videos, infographics, etc.), can make your presentation significantly more engaging, memorable, and striking. 

Say, for example, that your presentation consists entirely of numbers and data. You can use data visualization (e.g. charts, graphs, and maps), to make the data stick with your audience better. 

Or, if you’re a lecturer at a university, you’ll want to use as many pictures, videos, and even music to help your students remember the information you’re transmitting. 

Some of the most popular ways to make your presentations as visual as possible involve using:

  • Whiteboards
  • Presentation applications 

#11. Engage the audience

To give a truly memorable presentation, engage your audience as much as possible. 

Instead of speaking to your audience, try to speak with your audience.

What we mean by this is that you should be very proactive in getting your audience involved in your presentation. Ask questions, get them to share stories, and so on. 

Some examples of how you can effectively engage an audience are: 

  • Asking a random audience member to share their experience on a topic.
  • Doing a count of hands (e.g. “Has anyone done X? Can I see a count of hands?” or “Which one of you guys likes Y? Raise your hands.” )
  • Do an on-the-spot poll (e.g. “How many of you guys do X?” or “how many of you guys think Y?” )
  • Making time for a Q&A at the end of your presentation. 

6 Ways to Improve Your Presentation Skills

Just like any other skill, presentation skills can be learned and improved. So, if you’re looking to improve your presentation skills, follow the tips below: 

  • Take every public speaking opportunity you get. The best way to learn presentation skills is by doing it. So, take every opportunity you get. E.g. volunteer to present a project, say a toast at your friend's wedding, etc.
  • Check these TED talks. Is there anything TED talks haven’t covered? Check out these talks that can teach you how to give awesome presentations: “ Giving Presentations Worth Listening To ”, “ the secret structure of great talks ,” and “ the science of stage fright (and how to overcome it) ”. 
  • Take public speaking classes. Udemy, Coursera, and LinkedIn all have great public speaking courses. Or, even better, take a class at your local college. This way, you’ll get a lot more practice than by taking an online class. 
  • Attend other presentations. This one’s pretty self-explanatory. The more presentations you attend, the more you can learn from others’ successes or failures. 
  • Grow your confidence. Speak in front of friends and family, film yourself, and accept constructive criticism. Soon enough, you’ll be confident enough to give excellent presentations!
  • Ask for feedback. How can you improve your presentation skills if you don’t know where you’re lacking? After your presentation, ask one or two members of your audience for personal, one-on-one feedback on how you did. 

If you want to show a potential employer that you’ve got presentation skills, you’ll need to highlight them on your resume.

And in this section, we’ll teach you just how to do that!

Before you do that, though, make sure to grab one of our free resume templates!

free resume templates

#1. List Your Presentation Skills Under Your Soft Skills 

The first and most obvious place to list your presentation skills is under your skills section . 

This part is pretty straightforward. Your skills section should be divided into “soft skills” and “hard skills” and look something like this: 

presentation skills on resume

Simply add “Presentation Skills” under the “Soft Skills” section, and you’re good to go.

#2. Mention Your Presentation Skills in Your Resume Summary 

If presentation skills are super important for the role you’re applying for, you can also include them in your resume summary : 

resume summary presentation skills

In a nutshell, the resume summary is a short paragraph on top of your resume that typically mentions: 

  • Your title and years of experience 
  • Your most noteworthy achievements
  • Your top skills and qualifications

Done right, this section should highlight all your strong points right from the get-go and get the hiring manager to go through the rest of your resume in more detail. 

Here’s an example of a resume summary that effectively mentions the candidate’s presentation skills: 

  • Sales professional with 7 years of experience in sales presentations and lead generation. Excellent public speaking skills. Track record of converting prospects into loyal customers.

#3. Prove Presentation Skills Through Your Work Experience 

Lastly (and most importantly), you should use your work experience section to prove that you’ve got the presentation skills you mentioned in your skills section.

Here’s exactly how you can do that: 

  • Keep your work experience section relevant. List recent and relevant positions. Omit outdated and irrelevant ones. For example, if you’re applying for a customer service position, you can mention the time you worked, say, as a receptionist. Your teen job mowing lawns, on the other hand? Not as important. 
  • Focus on achievements instead of responsibilities. Instead of telling the hiring manager what they already know (your responsibilities), focus on showing them how you made an impact with your achievements. A way to do that is to write down a couple of achievements for every presentation skill that you include under your soft skills. 
  • Make your achievements quantifiable . Adding numbers to your achievements makes them significantly more impressive. “Delivered a presentation that closed a 6-figure client” is a lot more powerful than “Delivered client presentations,” right?
  • Use action verbs and power words. Presentation skills are also about how you present yourself in your resume. Avoid dry and unimaginative language and go for these action verbs and power words instead.

Key Takeaways 

And that’s about all you need to know to improve your presentation skills!

Before you go, though, here’s a quick recap of everything we covered in this article:

  • Presentation skills are soft skills that allow you to present information clearly and convey your message effectively. 
  • Some important presentation skills include public speaking, communication, persuasion, creativity, humor, and emotional intelligence. 
  • Presentation skills can increase your employability, improve your academic performance, make it easier to network, and help you grow professionally. 
  • Some steps you can take to give better presentations are to prepare in advance, practice as much as possible, exercise regularly, be humorous, use visual aids and multimedia, engage the audience, and accept that you’re nervous. 
  • To improve your presentation skills, watch videos that teach you how to give great presentations, attend public speaking classes and other presentations, and grow your confidence. 
  • List your presentation skills under your skills section, mention them in your resume summary, and prove them with your achievements in the work experience section.

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Ever wondered what sets a great presentation apart? It’s more than just the words you use. Think about this, voice modulation, or how you say things, plays a substantial role at 38%. Your body language like hand gestures or eye contact, or how you carry yourself, takes a commanding lead at 55%.

Surprisingly, the content—the words you speak—only contributes 7% to a successful presentation. This interesting fact reveals that being an impressive presenter is like having a special recipe. It’s not just about what you say but how you present yourself. 

In this blog, we’ll dive into the world of presentation skills, and here’s the exciting part—we’ll make the learning process enjoyable by exploring games and activities that can transform you into an outstanding communicator even in front of a large group. Let’s explore the elements that can make you a standout presenter on your professional journey!

Importance of Presentation Skills

In the professional world, the ability to deliver a compelling presentation goes beyond sharing information; it’s about creating a memorable impact on your audience.

Here’s why presentation skills are important:

draft 1 activities to improve presentation skills google docs

1. Communication Mastery

Presentation skills are at the forefront of effective communication. It’s not just about what you say; it’s how you say it. A well-delivered presentation ensures your message is heard and understood, fostering clear and meaningful communication.

2. Professional Credibility

A skilled presenter commands professional credibility. The ability to articulate ideas with clarity and confidence instils trust and respect from colleagues, superiors, and stakeholders. Credibility is a cornerstone for career advancement and building strong professional relationships.

3. Influence and Persuasion

Presentations are powerful tools for influencing and persuading others. Whether pitching a proposal, leading a team meeting, or advocating for a project, effective presentation skills enable you to sway opinions, gain support, and drive initiatives forward.

4. Career Advancement

Professionals with polished presentation skills often find themselves on a fast track to career advancement. The capacity to deliver compelling presentations positions you as a valuable asset to the organisation, setting the stage for leadership roles.

5. Confidence Building

Mastering presentation skills significantly contributes to building confidence. The more skilled you become at presenting, the more confident you feel in expressing your ideas. Confidence is contagious and can inspire confidence in others, creating a positive and dynamic work culture.

Now that we understand the pivotal role presentation skills play in professional success, let’s dive into engaging activities that can serve as effective tools for improvement.

Activities To Enhance Presentation Skills

These activities go beyond traditional training methods, offering a dynamic and enjoyable way to refine your presentation prowess.

Explore the following activities to elevate your skills:

Activity 1: Pecha Kucha

Pecha Kucha is a unique presentation style that challenges individuals to communicate their message with precision and impact. Originating from Japan, the term “Pecha Kucha” translates to “chit-chat” in English, and the format was first introduced in 2003 by architects Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham . Here’s how Pecha Kucha works:

draft 1 activities to improve presentation skills google docs 1

20 Slides, 20 Seconds Each: 

Presenters create a slideshow with precisely 20 slides. The catch? Each slide is displayed for only 20 seconds. This strict time constraint adds an element of urgency, compelling presenters to deliver their message succinctly.

Concise and Focused Content

With only 20 seconds per slide, presenters must convey their content in the most essential and impactful points. This format discourages information overload and encourages a clear and focused presentation.

To excel in creating a Pecha Kucha presentation, consider the following tips:

Thematic Consistency: Maintain a consistent theme or message throughout your 20 slides to ensure coherence and a unified presentation.

Powerful Visuals: Prioritise impactful images, diagrams, or concise text on each slide to enhance the visual appeal and complement your spoken content.

Scripted Timing: Practise your presentation to synchronise with the 20-second time limit per slide. This ensures a smooth and well-timed delivery during the actual presentation.

Succinct Messaging: Craft concise and memorable messages for each slide, focusing on the main points to avoid overwhelming the formal audience with information.

Engaging Transitions: Plan smooth transitions between slides to keep the audience engaged. The rapid pace should feel natural and purposeful.

Feedback Seeking: Seek feedback from peers or mentors to gather insights on your Pecha Kucha presentation’s clarity, impact, and effectiveness.

Activity 2: Gush About Something You Don’t Like 

In this unconventional activity, participants are tasked with passionately speaking about something they don’t like. The challenge lies in transforming a negative subject into a positive and engaging presentation.

The objective is not to dwell on criticism but to practise the art of constructive communication and find positive aspects even in seemingly unfavourable situations.

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Key Elements of the Activity:

Positive Framing: Participants must employ positive framing, emphasising constructive aspects or potential solutions related to a disliked subject. This requires creative thinking and the ability to reframe perspectives.

Expressive Communication: The activity encourages a person to maintain a passionate and expressive tone while discussing a disliked topic. This helps develop spontaneity and enthusiasm, key elements of engaging communication.

Audience Engagement: Engaging the audience is crucial in this activity, which also acts as an ice breaker. Participants must capture attention by injecting humour or providing relatable anecdotes, ensuring the presentation remains interesting despite the negative subject.

Improvisation Skills: The unpredictability of this activity fosters improvisation skills. Participants must think on their feet, respond to potential audience questions or objections, and navigate the presentation with adaptability.

Benefits of Gushing About Something You Don’t Like:

Participating in this activity provides several benefits. It cultivates the ability to find positives in challenging situations, fostering a constructive mindset. Expressive communication skills are honed through the challenge of maintaining enthusiasm, even when discussing a disliked topic. Engaging the audience under these circumstances enhances overall presentation skills, and the fun exercise sharpens improvisation skills by navigating unexpected turns.

Ultimately, this activity transforms negativity into an opportunity for growth, allowing participants to develop a positive and adaptable approach to communication challenges.

Activity 3: Photo Story

The Photo Story storytelling activity is a creative and engaging way to enhance presentation skills by incorporating visual storytelling. Participants are tasked with creating a presentation using a series of carefully selected photos as visual aids.

Each image becomes a piece of the narrative puzzle, and the presenter must seamlessly articulate the story, connecting each photo to the overarching message.

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Visual Narrative Building: Participants select a sequence of photos telling a story. The challenge is to ensure that each image contributes meaningfully to the narrative, creating a cohesive and interactive visual journey.

Storytelling Skills: The activity focuses on developing storytelling skills. Presenters must describe the images and weave them into a compelling story. This enhances the ability to convey messages in a narrative format, making presentations more memorable.

Emphasis on Visual Communication: Photo Story underscores the importance of visual communication. Participants learn to use visuals effectively, recognising the impact of images in conveying emotions, themes, and key points. This skill is transferable to other aspects of presentation design.

Audience Engagement through Imagery: Engaging the audience is achieved through the power of imagery. Participants must captivate their audience by explaining the significance of each photo, fostering a deeper connection between the audience and the presented content.

Benefits of Photo Story:

Engaging in the Photo Story activity yields numerous benefits. It enhances storytelling capabilities, making presentations more engaging and memorable. The emphasis on visual communication contributes to creating visually appealing presentations in various professional contexts.

Additionally, the activity cultivates the ability to structure information coherently and captivate audiences through compelling visuals and narrative elements.

Overall, Photo Story is a versatile tool that improves presentation skills and promotes creativity and effective visual communication.

Activity 4: 30 Seconds Without Filler Words

The “30 Seconds Without Filler Words” activity is a great exercise designed to enhance public speaking skills by promoting clarity, coherence, and the elimination of filler words. Participants are challenged to speak on a random topic for 30 seconds without using common filler words such as “um,” “uh,” or “like.”

This activity aims to sharpen communication skills, encourage mindful expression, and minimise distractions to create a more impactful and engaging presentation style.

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Elimination of Filler Words: The primary focus is on eliminating filler words that often diminish a presentation’s impact. Participants are encouraged to speak fluently and confidently, avoiding unnecessary pauses or distractions.

Mindful Communication: The activity cultivates mindful communication by prompting participants to recognise their speech patterns. This heightened awareness contributes to more intentional expression.

Pacing and Time Management: Participants must effectively manage their time within the 30-second limit, emphasising the importance of pacing in public speaking. This skill is transferable to various presentation scenarios where time constraints are a factor.

Enhanced Message Impact: Presenters create a more polished and professional impression for the whole room by eliminating filler words. The message becomes clearer, and the overall impact of the presentation is heightened, contributing to a more effective communication style.

Benefits of 30 Seconds Without Filler Words:

Engaging in this activity yields several benefits. It fosters an awareness of speech patterns, enabling participants to identify and eliminate filler words from their presentations. The emphasis on fluent and coherent expression enhances overall public speaking skills along with nonverbal communication, making presentations more impactful and engaging.

Moreover, the activity instils valuable lessons in time management and pacing, crucial elements in delivering concise and effective presentations. Ultimately, “30 Seconds Without Filler Words” is a targeted exercise that empowers participants to refine their communication style and deliver presentations with increased clarity and confidence.

The Power of Presentation Skills Training

Starting a presentation skills training course is like discovering a secret weapon for professional success. A skilled trainer can guide you through the intricacies of effective communication, helping you harness the true power of your voice.

Practice speaking under the guidance of experts allows you to refine your delivery, build confidence, and captivate your audience with every presentation.

Most people may underestimate the impact of a well-delivered presentation, but with the right training, you can elevate your skills to new heights.

In a presentation skills training course, you’ll discover the art of engaging an audience through various mediums. A seasoned trainer will train you on different types of presentations, teaching you to adapt your approach based on the context and audience.

Whether you write a speech, deliver a pitch, or participate in a video conference, the course equips you with the skills to excel and make your presentation successful.

A great trainer understands that effective communication goes beyond words. They emphasise the importance of non-verbal cues, teaching you to read and respond to your audience in the session. For example, when you actively listen, you can tailor your presentation to address the specific interests of your audience, ensuring they not only listen but also relate to your message.

Good presentation involves understanding these two truths: the significance of non-verbal communication and the importance of audience engagement.

In presentation skills training, every session is an opportunity to refine your abilities and unlock your full potential as a communicator.

So, if you’re interested in making a lasting impression and mastering the art of persuasive communication, a presentation skills training course is your pathway to success, offering opportunities for public speaking activities and discussion.

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By Rishabh Bhandari

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