Disturbing nightmares, clammy palms, thumping head and heart: these familiar feelings strike when it’s time to present to the board or a customer.
Will the PowerPoint work? Has my computer got enough battery life? Did I prepare the right material? Will I be able to answer all their questions?
All these worries go round and round in your mind beforehand – and the last thing you need is distraction from preparing and in a worst-case scenario, distraction whilst delivering your presentation.
There is no magic formula for giving the perfect presentation, but the key to confidence and control is preparation, preparation, preparation. So here are some top tips for the ingredients for the perfect presentation.
Even while you’re preparing, there are ways that technology can help you make the best use of your time and prepare the perfect presentation. For technophobes and the time poor, the Kensington Dual Monitor Adapter helps you to extend your workspace by adding a second screen to your laptop. It’s a plug and play USB device that allows you to connect a second screen. You can also use it to connect to the projector, so that there is no need to fiddle and toggle with function F8 button to kick start it, as the protector will be treated a second screen. It means the audience can see one view while you refer to notes on another.
For a truly professional feel, you need to step away from the PC and communicate directly with your audience, instead of your screen. The audience wants to hear from you, not read your PowerPoint slides. You are there to bring information to life – the slides are your visual aid, not vice-versa.
Think about using a wireless presenter to keep control of your content while focusing on your audience. The Kensington Wireless Presenter, for example, gives users the ability to connect to both Macs and PCs and its smart power function prevents accidental power consumption, helping to safeguard embarrassing battery life issues during presentations. It also enables you to hide a presentation at the touch of a button, to focus an audience on what you are saying or go ‘off plan’ for a moment. Above all, its simple design fits in the hand, providing a channel for nervous energy, rather than wringing your hands or moving around nervously.
For some a laser pointer is a perfect way of highlighting a key point. Others will still need a mouse to control their PowerPoint. Kensington Presenter Mice do both, so that you have the ability to control a cursor and your slides but also the freedom to work the stage, moving away from a podium or desk during their presentation.
Once you have the right device for controlling your presentation, take a moment to think about what’s supporting the computer. Will you have access to power during your presentation? To avoid scrabbling around for plugs or carrying multiple cables and adapters, Kensington has a range of power adapters allowing you to both power and charge your notebook from a traditional wall plug, or in the car or aeroplane.
If you need to connect to the Internet, do you have the right cables or a way to find out if there’s WiFi in the room? If you are leaving your computer for any length of time, will it be secure? The nightmare scenario is someone swiping your laptop moments before the presentation, so do make sure that this risk is reduced by using a laptop lock.