Presence Training

6 Common Presentation Blunders to Avoid


Doing presentations is not an easy feat, especially if you feel like you are getting anxious just at the thought of it. A lot of people feel under immense pressure when they are about to present, and so they make mistakes. According to experts, the best learning process you can make involves learning the potential mistakes and working your way around them. As you get to avoid them, you will find that presentations are not as tough as you once believed. Let’s check out some of the common blunders people run into when it comes to presentations: 


  • Little preparation – more often than you would imagine, a good presentation doesn’t go as planned because the speaker has not invested the needed time for preparation. It takes a good effort to find a balance between the professional and the personal aspects of the presentation. There are personal elements – body language, appearance, voice. Then there are the professional parts of it – the content, the subject and the visuals/media that contributes. Preparing all of the fine little details of these 2 aspects is perhaps the most important first step to a killer presentation. 


  • Wrong use of visuals – it is not a secret that visuals turn a presentation from good to great. However, visuals have the potential to detract from the content, instead of enhancing it. Slides get unattractive if they are overcrowded. Lengthy paragraphs repel people’s attention, rather than attract it. Instead, a good presentation should feature minor points in bullets, instead of lengthy paragraphs. Learning these simple principles can lead to visual enhancement, which will serve you well on your presentations. 


  • Having no clue about the audience – the best presenters out there know that they have to do a custom design of their presentation, which fits the audience. Knowing as much as possible about the people who will listen to you is crucial. Their demographics, occupation and age, as well as how much they know about the topic in question constitute valuable data, which will help you design the presentation in the best possible way. Researching these factors could mean the difference between success and failure. 


  • Using inappropriate humour – just a single off-colour joke can render your further efforts futile. People may get offended and it is always better to consider ‘neutral’ humour, rather than one that goes too far. You may think that what you are saying is funny, whereas in reality people might be sensitive to it and view you as unprofessional. It is best to be highly considerate of this when doing any kind of presentations. 


  • You start or end late – when it comes to presentations, there is the clock you need to abide to. It is never a good idea to start or end a presentation late. People in the audience have their time restrictions and they don’t want to feel stressed about it, because of you. Practice your presentation so that you stay within the allotted amount of time and always be on time at the start. 


  • You are cramming too much into a short presentation – you have to learn how to cut back/cut out material. If the time you have for your presentation is short, you will need those skills, to make a workable presentation. You can pass extra information in the handouts, remove minor details and only focus on the important stuff. 


Knowing more about these all too common mistakes will enable you to better create the best presentation. Always try to improve and stay on top of your presentation game. 


© Presence Training