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Presentations -It's not you, it's them!

Presentations -It's not you, it's them!

I have two daughters – one who loves giving presentations, and one who would rather go the dentist than stand up in front of a group of people and speak. Most people, I think, would relate to daughter two! 

I was recently reminded how frightening public speaking can be, when I attended a presentation about a topic I genuinely wanted to learn more about.

It quickly became apparent that the speaker was very nervous. Not only did she keep telling us how nervous she was; she also kept fidgeting with the gadget designed to click between slides, resulting in slides that kept spontaneously changing behind her.

We all felt for her and were willing her to do well. But her nerves were getting the better of her. After a few minutes, the person organising the event suggested a short break.

The break did seem to be what she needed; she came back so ready to deliver that she talked non-stop for 90 minutes! The only problem was that it wasn’t about the topic we had come to hear about; she just skirted around the edges of it.

She had sadly fallen into a common trap: she had focused on her own needs (and fears) rather than the needs of her audience. Her attention was on what would happen to her when she delivered her presentation, not on what her audience would do as a result of it.

We’ve all experienced presentations like this and I created the Study Guide, Planning a Presentation so you can avoid falling into the same trap. Unless you’re already an expert, please do take the time to have a look before you deliver your next presentation – I guarantee it’ll help!

The key point is that great presenting is all about the audience, what they need and the actions they’ll take as a result of the presentation. So, next time you worry about delivering a presentation, remember it’s about them and not you.

All the best,


P.S. We also have a couple of great Hints and Tips for anyone who wants to grow their confidence and abilities as a presenter. 

October 25 2018 Frances Ferguson
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Frances Ferguson

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