My Pet Peeves on Presenting
I’ve had to sit through tons of class presentations and speeches during my time here in college. And I have compiled in my head a list of things that drive me completely insane about presenting! So here they are, in no particular order.
1. Do not carry a sheet(s) of paper with you with notes on it to help you remember what to say. Jot down guidelines on note cards instead. It is much less distracting than fidgeting and flipping through sheets of paper.
2. Do not rely so heavily on these note cards. Jot notes down on your cards to help you rememeber important ideas to discuss. Do not read directly from them. There’s no credibility in that. That tells your audience, professor, and client that you probably don’t know what you are talking about and that you prepared this presentation before class.
3. And speaking of your audience, greet them before beginning your presentation. Introduce yourself as well. Then introduce your topic.
4. One of my two top pet peeves is how people who present in groups say, “Okay, and I’m gonna talk about…” whenever their turn comes up. It drives me crazy, lol. Just talk about it! It seems like each person in the group starts off with that as their introduction. Really, what is that? Try again.
5. My second pet peeve is that when people make PowerPoint slides, they use a background color or photo that is not dark or light enough in comparison to the color of the text. WHY DO YOU HAVE SLIDES UP THAT NO ONE CAN READ??? Just asking. Did you know that you could change the transparency of the photo if you really MUST use this picture? If not, just use a plain colored background, please and thank you.
6. On the contrary, it’s probably not a good idea to use aa template that is too basic and plain. Or if you do, at least add some graphics, charts, photos, etc. to brighten it up. Just remember not to have a PowerPoint that is distracting the audience from what you are talking about. Visual aids are AIDS. They shouldn’t be, in most cases, the basis of your presentation. They are simply supplements.
7. Leave time at the end if you can for your audience, professor, or client to ask questions. They might want to share new ideas with you or clarify something they didn’t understand.
8. Be consistent in dress with your presentation members. If one person is going to be in business casual, everyone should be.
9. Practice in the mirror, in front of your friends, or even with your group members, the entire presentation. This will help everything get put in order appropriately and also you are able to time yourselves. And while you are practicing, you can try not to say things like “umm,” “uhh,” or “like.”
I am in no way, shape, or form Georgia Southern’s best speaker, lol! But that does not mean I am not able to state my opinions on what could make other people’s presentations better…in the same way that basketball fans can judge NBA players and their game 😉