You present every day!

Every day in every way you are talking to people and trying to persuade them to see something your way, and then motivate them to take action and do it. If you are at work, perhaps you’re asking a staff member to handle a project in a certain way that’s different from how they have been doing it, or you’re asking a colleague to join you in an effort to promote a new direction, or you’re trying to motivate the team to get on board with a new sales initiative. If it’s family stuff you might talk about plans for the evening, or having one of the kids take out the trash or clean their room. You might be negotiating with your spouse about some expenditure or weekend plan.

Think of presenting as any form of communication one to one; one to few; and one to many, where your objective is to change the person’s thinking or behaviour. So plan to hone your presentation skills on a daily basis as part of your everyday communication routine – so that when the time comes for you to make a presentation, you are ready to speak up and influence people.

Good presenters get good by having lots of practice. If you start looking at every communication scenario as a presentation opportunity, you will get good too!

There are some general tips you can implement as part of your presentation skills development. For example, make sure your opening gets their attention and communicates what the benefit is for them to do as you ask. Make sure the close summarises the conversation and calls your audience to action – even in a conversation with your child. For example, instead of saying, “did you hear me?” you could say, “Jack, will you please remember to take out the bins whether I remind you or not?”

There are many opportunities every day to present your ideas. Promise yourself that you will use every occasion as an opportunity to hone your presentation skills?