How to Start the Introduction in a Group Presentation
Audrey lucas, 25 jun 2018.
In both school and business, group presentations require teamwork, collaboration and planning. These group assignments result in comprehensive presentations that benefit from the strengths and ideas of various group members. With careful planning and a clear distribution of responsibilities, members of a group can avoid conflict and and work together effectively on a group presentation. After mapping out the presentation, all group members should participate in delivering it to the audience. When presenting, the introduction will set the tone for your presentation and determine whether you will have the attention of your audience.
Explore this article
- Ask Thought Provoking Question
- Briefly Introduce Group Members
- Incorporate Visual Aids
- Paper outlines of your presentation
- Props relating to the topic
1 Ask Thought Provoking Question
Capture the attention of your audience immediately by asking thought-provoking questions, providing startling facts and statistics or using relevant props. For a presentation about a serious political, moral or health topic, open with a question that makes the audience feel something about the subject. Use sentences that begin with "Would you ever," "What would you do if" and "Why do you think that" to make the subject personal to the audience. When presenting lighter topics, use attention getting props, such as costumes or diagrams to build interest.
2 Briefly Introduce Group Members
Each member of your group should address a designated theme or aspect of the presentation topic. Choose a leader to introduce the group members. Each group member will briefly address the audience, stating their name, role in the presentation and intentions for presenting. Establish credibility with the audience by calling their attention to your research of and experience with the topic. Audience members will take group members more seriously during the presentation after getting to know them through a brief introduction.
3 Incorporate Visual Aids
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, audience members retain 65 percent of information from oral presentations that include visual aids compared to the 10 percent retained without them. Hand out one-page outlines of your presentation to the audience stating the main points you will cover. Briefly read through the outline to prepare the audience for the presentation and invite them to take notes directly on the provided outline. Writing the information you present will keep the audience focused on your presentation and provide them with material to review later.
- Clearly define roles and expectations of group members to create equal workloads.
- Use the most confident group members to lead the introduction and capture the audience's attention.
- Involve the audience with short surveys or a question and answer segment.
- 1 North Virginia Community College: Tips for Preparing a Group Presentation
About the Author
Based in Southern California, Audrey Lucas has nine years of experience teaching preschool children. She contributes to the parenting section of her local children's magazine. Lucas graduated from California State University, San Marcos, in 2006, earning a Bachelor of Arts in liberal studies with an emphasis in literature and writing.
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Guide for Giving a Group Presentation
February 21, 2018 - dom barnard.
In certain academic and business situations, it is more valuable to deliver a group presentation than a solo one. Many people prefer group presentations because there is less pressure on the individual. However there are also unique challenges, such as having to ensure multiple individuals collaborate in order to produce a cohesive piece of work.
Preparing for the group presentation
As with any presentation, there is a significant amount of work during the preparation stage. The group must be well organised because there are multiple individuals, and therefore multiple personalities involved.
To assist with organisation, the group should first decide on a presentation moderator - this is essentially the "leader". The presentation moderator can have the final say when decision-making is needed and, during the Q&A portion of the presentation, can decide which speakers will answer certain questions.
Understanding the audience
To make your presentation engaging you need to think about the audience so you can tailor it towards their needs. How much will the audience already know about this topic? What will they want to get from this presentation?
For example, if you are presenting the topic of building a bridge to a group of civil engineers, you can confidently use technical language. However, if you are presenting to secondary school students, you would need to use simpler language and not explain the methods in as much detail.
The presentation's purpose
As a group, ensure you agree on the purpose of the presentation so that you all understand the message that needs to be conveyed e.g. "We want to find out which treatment works best for social anxiety." Deciding on your message means that the group can start building key points around this - just keep in mind that each subtopic must contribute to the presentation's aim.
Divide the presentation
The presentation needs to be divided into main areas so there is a clear beginning, middle and end. This is where can you decide on the order of the subtopics. Presentations usually follow this structure:
- It is useful to agree on the first minute of the presentation as a team. This is because the audience should be interested from the start and convinced to listen.
- The presentation's aims are also discussed and an overview of the presentation's structure is provided. For example, "We set out to explore the effectiveness of different treatments for social anxiety. We will first cover the symptoms and prevalence of social anxiety, before explaining the different treatments. This will then lead into a discussion about the pros and cons of each treatment route. Finally, we will explain which treatment route we decided was the most effective for this disorder."
2. One or two middle sections:
- These sections consist of providing the information that addresses your presentation's aim.
- There can be more of these sections depending on your topic.
- After summarising all of the key points, there must be a clear conclusion. It is beneficial to appoint the conclusion to the best speaker as this is where all the information is pooled together.
After segmenting the presentation, a time sequence can be created so the group understands the order in which tasks must be completed. It is important to set deadlines for this.
A frequent problem when working within a group is unequal participation as this can subsequently cause disharmony.
But this is easily avoidable by assigning each speaker a section of the presentation to work on depending on their interests. This means that each speaker should be doing the research for their section and putting together a speech and slides (if being used).
- It is important to specify exactly what each group member should be doing with their time.
- Make sure the length of time per speaker is agreed on.
- Do not change speakers more than necessary because this can reduce the coherency of the presentation.
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Build the presentation together
For an audience to follow and enjoy a presentation, it must flow together. Meeting up and building the presentation helps with this because:
- This prevents the duplication of content.
- You can put the slides together, although only one individual should be responsible for merging the slides so there is consistency within the presentation.
- It is useful to receive feedback on the speeches before presenting to an audience.
- The team can agree on any edits.
- The team can agree on the conclusion.
- You can make sure that each speaker will talk for the same amount of time and cover a similar amount of information.
- The team can come up with the first minute of the presentation together.
Use stories to engage the audience
A good presentation opening could start with a story to highlight why your topic is significant. For example, if the topic is on the benefits of pets on physical and psychological health, you could present a story or a study about an individual whose quality of life significantly improved after being given a dog.
The audience is more likely to remember this story than a list of facts and statistics so try and incorporate relevant stories into presentations.
Know what each speaker will say
Each speaker must know what the other group members will say as this prevents repetition and it may be useful to refer to a previous speaker to assist in explaining your own section.
Also, if a team member is unable to attend on the day it will be easier to find cover within the group.
Write and practice transitions
Clean transitioning between speakers can also assist in producing a presentation that flows well. One way of doing this is:
- Briefly recap on what you covered in your section: "So that was a brief introduction on what social anxiety is and how it can affect somebody"
- Introduce the next speaker in the team and explain what they will discuss: "Now Sarah will talk about the prevalence of social anxiety."
- Then end by looking at the next speaker, gesturing towards them and saying their name: "Sarah".
- The next speaker should acknowledge this with a quick: "Thank you Nick."
From this example you can see how the different sections of the presentations link which makes it easier for the audience to follow and remain engaged.
Practice the presentation
Rehearse with the group multiple times to make sure:
- The structure works
- Everyone is sticking to their timing.
- To see if any edits are needed.
The more you rehearse a presentation the more you will feel comfortable presenting the material and answering questions as your familiarity with the content increases.
Handling nerves before the presentation
It is natural to feel nervous when presenting in front of others, regardless of the size of the audience. Here are some tips:
- Remind yourself that the audience is there to listen to you and wants you to do well; there is no need to be afraid of them.
- Remember that the audience members will have to present their projects later and are almost certainly feeling just as nervous.
- Practicing with your group and practicing your section at home will make you more comfortable and familiar with the material and increase your confidence.
- Practice pauses - when people feel nervous they tend to find silences uncomfortable and try to fill gaps, such as using "um" multiple times (filler words). Practicing pauses will help the silences feel less unnatural when you present therefore reducing the need for filler words.
- When we are nervous we often begin breathing quickly and this in turn can increase our anxiety. Controlled breathing is a common technique that helps slow down your breathing to normal thus reducing your anxiety.
Exercises to control your breathing:
- Sit down in an upright position as it easier for your lungs to fill with air
- Breathe in through your nose and into your abdomen for four seconds
- Hold this breathe for two seconds
- Breathe out through your nose for six seconds
- Wait a few seconds before inhaling and repeating the cycle
During the group presentation
Introducing the team.
The presentation should begin with the presentation moderator introducing the team. This is smoother than each individual presenting themselves.
Pay attention to the presentation
You may feel nervous as you wait for your turn to speak but try to listen to the presentation. The audience is able to see the whole team so it is important that you look interested in what is being said and react to it, even if you have heard it multiple times.
Body language and eye contact
Body language is a useful tool to engage the audience:
- If it is your turn to speak then stand slightly in the foreground of the rest of your group.
- Smile at the audience as this will make you look more confident.
- Make eye contact as this helps you engage with the audience.
- Keep your arms uncrossed so your body language is more open.
- Do not look down and read from your notes- glancing down occasionally is fine but keep in mind that you are talking to the audience.
- This is the same for presenting visual aids ; you may need to glance at the computer slide but make sure you predominantly face the audience as you are still speaking to them.
- Keep your hands at your sides but use them occasionally to gesture.
How you say something is just as is important as the content of your speech - arguably, more so . For example, if an individual presented on a topic very enthusiastically the audience would probably enjoy this compared to someone who covered more points but mumbled into their notes.
Here are some pointers:
- Adapt your voice depending on what are you saying- if you want to highlight something then raise your voice or lower your voice for intensity.
- Avoid speaking in monotone.
- Sound enthusiastic - the more you sound like you care about the topic, the more the audience will listen.
- Speak loudly and clearly.
- If you notice that you are speaking quickly, pause and slow down.
- Warm up your voice before a speech
Take short pauses and breath deeply. This will ensure you have more vocal variety.
Handling nerves during the presentation
- If you find that you are too uncomfortable to give audience members direct eye contact, a helpful technique is to look directly over the heads of the audience as this gives the impression of eye contact.
- Try not to engage in nervous behaviours e.g. shifting your weight or fidgeting.
- Remember that it's unlikely that the audience knows that you are feeling nervous - you do not look as anxious as you feel.
- Notice whether you are speaking too quickly as this tends to happen when nervousness increases. If you are, pause and then slow down.
Since the conclusion is the last section of your presentation the audience is more likely to remember it. Summarise the key points and lead into a clear concluding statement. For example, if your presentation was on the impact of social media on self-esteem you could list all the main points covered in the presentation and conclude "Therefore, from the amount of evidence and also from the quality of evidence, we have decided that social media is negatively/positively impacting self-esteem."
Questions and answer session
The questions and answers session after the main presentation can be a source of anxiety as it is often difficult to predict what questions will be asked. But working within a group setting means that individually you do not have to know everything about the topic.
When an audience member asks a question , the presentation moderator can refer a speaker who has the relevant knowledge to provide an answer. This avoids any hesitant pauses.
If you are answering group presentation questions:
- Pause before answering- take the time to gather your thoughts and think about your answer
- Make sure you answer the question- sometimes you may start providing more information than necessary. Keeping answers as concise as possible will help with this.
- Ask the questioner for clarification if you do not understand- it's better to ask rather than answering in a way that does not address the question.
- You're not expected to know everything- challenging questions will emerge and if you do not know the answer you can respond with: "That's a really good question, I'm not certain so let me look into that."
Ending the presentation
A good ending usually consists of the presentation moderator thanking the audience. If there is another group afterwards they should transition to the next group.
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How to write a presentation (and deliver it, even via Zoom)
31 minute read
You’ve been asked to give a presentation. Chances are, your response will be roughly one of the following:
1. It’s a subject you’re passionate about and you’re a confident speaker. You’re pleased to have the opportunity.
2. You secretly worry that your style is flat and unengaging. You’re not looking forward to it.
3. At best, the prospect makes you nervous; at worst, terrified. You’d rather have root canal surgery.
If you belong in one of the last two categories, you probably know you’re not alone. You may have heard the statistic that public speaking is more widely feared even than death .
However you feel about the prospect of presenting, this comprehensive guide will take you step by step through the process of planning, writing and delivering a presentation you can be proud of (even via Zoom).
Use the contents links below to jump to the section you need most, make your way through methodically from start to finish, or bookmark this page for next time you need it.
What is a presentation?
Essentially, it’s a story. And its origins go back thousands of years – to when our ancestors gathered around the campfire to listen to the wise elders of the tribe. Without PowerPoint!
These days, presentations encompass the glitz and scale of the Oscars or the new iPhone launch through to business briefings to smaller audiences, in person or – increasingly – online. We’re focusing on the business side.
Whatever the occasion, there’s always an element of drama involved. A presentation is not a report you can read at your leisure, it’s an event – speakers are putting themselves on the spot to explain, persuade or inspire you. Good presentations use this dynamic to support their story.
Always remember: everyone wants you to do well
If you are nervous, always remember: no one sets out to write a poor presentation and no one wants to go to one either. There may be private agendas in the room, but for the most part audiences approach presentations positively. They want to be engaged and to learn. They want you to do well.
First things first: the date’s in the diary and you need to prepare. Let’s break it down.
1. Preparing your presentation
Imagine you’re a designer in the automotive industry and your boss has asked you to give a presentation. The subject: the future of the car and how it will fit with all the other modes of transport.
Where to start? How to approach it? First you need an angle, a key idea.
We talk about ‘giving’ a presentation – and of course it’s the audience who will be receiving it. So, instead of beginning with cars (in this case), let’s think about people. That way we can root the talk in the everyday experience we all share.
Maybe you remember a time you were stuck in traffic on a motorway. Morning rush hour. No one moving. Up ahead children were crossing a footbridge on their way to school, laughing at the cars going nowhere. And you thought, ‘Enjoy it while you can! This will be you one day.’ But maybe not. Surely we can do better for future generations!
There’s your opening – the whole issue captured in a single image, and you’ve immediately engaged your audience with a simple story.
The who, the why and the what
Always begin with the people you’ll be addressing in mind. Before you start writing, answer three fundamental questions: who is your audience, why are you talking to them and what do you want to say?
The answers will provide the strong foundations you need and start the ideas flowing. Ignore them and you risk being vague and unfocused. Clear writing is the result of clear thinking and thinking takes time, but it’s time well spent.
Got a presentation to write? Before you do anything else, answer three fundamental questions: who is your audience, why are you talking to them and what do you want to say? @EmphasisWriting Click To Tweet
Start with the audience
Are you a senior car designer talking to your team? If the answer’s yes, you can assume high-level, shared knowledge.
But if you’re talking to the sales or marketing departments, you can’t make the same assumptions – there are issues you might have to explain and justify. And if it’s a press briefing, it’s about getting the message out to the general public – a different story again.
Knowing your audience will also dictate your tone. Your presentation to the board is likely to be quite formal, whereas a talk for your team can be more relaxed.
And what’s the audience’s mood? On another occasion you might have bad news to deliver – perhaps the national economy and the company’s finances are threatening people’s jobs. Then you must empathise – put yourself in their position and adapt your tone accordingly.
I want to …
You also need a clear objective (the why ). For our car designer, the overriding objective should be to plant a key idea in the audience’s mind. Starting with that image of the schoolchildren, it’s to convince the audience that the company has a radical and distinctive design future.
That’s the takeaway. How should they do that? Should they explain, persuade or inspire – the three key strategies for any presentation? You may need to use several of them to achieve your goal.
Objectives should always complete the statement ‘I want to …’. What do you want to do ?
It’s about …
The what is the substance of your presentation – the building blocks, all the facts and figures that tell the audience ‘It’s about …’.
Back to our designer. The move away from petrol and diesel will allow a complete rethink of car design. The electric power unit and battery can lie under the car’s floor, freeing up all the space taken up by the conventional engine. And then there are all the issues around emission-free, autonomous vehicles in the ‘smart’ cities of the future.
When you’re planning, it can be helpful to get all the information out of your head and onto the page, using a mind map , like the example below (for a talk on UK transport policy).
This is an effective way of unlocking everything you know (or still need to do more research on). Start with your main topic, then keep asking yourself questions (like who, what, when, where, how and why) to dig into all the aspects.
Mind map with the topic of ‘UK transport policy at the centre. Arrows point out to six bubbles with the labels ‘Who’, ‘When’, ‘Why’, ‘How’, ‘What’ and ‘Where’. More arrows point out from each of these bubbles to explore related points in each area, and still more arrows from some of those points to expand further. The information reads:
- Special interests / NGOs
- Need for clear government direction
- What industry will do
- R&D spend
- What industry is doing
- Congestion [this leads to the sub-point ‘Wasted time and money’]
- More pollution
- More congestion
- More wasted time and money
- Climate change
- Road pricing
- Working together
- New technology
- Social policy
- Rest of world
- Emerging economies
Once you’ve got it all out on the page, you can identify which parts actually belong in your presentation. Don’t try to include every last detail: audiences don’t want to process piles of information. They are more interested in your ideas and conclusions.
Now let’s put all this research and planning into a structure.
2. How to structure your presentation
On 28 August 1963, Dr Martin Luther King Jr stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC and delivered one of the most powerful speeches in history: ‘I have a dream’.
He was the leader of the civil rights movement in the US and his audience that day numbered in the hundreds of thousands. His goal was to inspire them to continue the struggle.
Presentations usually aim to either explain, persuade or inspire – sometimes with elements of all three. Your aim will determine your structure. This will be the backbone of your presentation, giving it strength and direction.
Explain in a logical sequence
When you explain, you add to people’s knowledge to build the key idea. But ask yourself, what does this audience already know?
If you’re an astrophysicist talking to an audience of your peers, you can use terms and concepts you know they’ll be familiar with. If you’re explaining black holes to Joe Public, you can’t do that. Typically, you’ll have to use simple analogies to keep the audience with you (‘Imagine you’re in a huge dark room …’).
Whether it’s black holes or new software, good explanations start with what we know and then build on that understanding, step by step, layer by layer. The audience will stay with you if they can follow your logic and you can help this with linking comments – ‘Building on that … ‘, ‘This means …’, ‘To illustrate that, I’ve always found …’.
Presentations usually aim to either explain, persuade or inspire – sometimes with elements of all three. Your aim will determine your presentation's structure. @EmphasisWriting Click To Tweet
We need to change
If you’re writing a persuasive presentation, you also need to follow a particular sequence.
Whether you’re writing a pitch for a prospective customer or making research-based recommendations to a client, you follow the same structure. That structure is the Four Ps . It’s a powerful way of leading your audience’s thinking.
Start with the current situation – where you are now ( position ). Explain why you can’t stay there, so the audience agrees things have to change ( problem ). Suggest up to three credible ways you can address the issue ( possibilities ). Then decide which one is the optimum solution ( proposal ).
Three is a magic number for writers – not too many, not too few. But there may be one standout possibility, in which case you go straight to it ( position, problem, proposal ).
Think about how the pandemic has profoundly changed our working lives. Towns and cities are full of offices that people used to commute to. But to maintain social distancing, we’ve been encouraged to work from home where possible and to stay away from public transport.
At some point, decision-makers within organisations will have to make a call – or share a recommendation – about what to do long term. Should we go back to the office, stay at home or combine the two?
If we had to present on this choice using the Four Ps structure, we could outline the pros and cons of each possibility and then make a push for the one we recommend above the others. Or we could join the likes of Google and Twitter and simply propose purely remote working well into the future.
I have a dream
A presentation that inspires is about the future – about what could be. Scientists inspire children to follow careers in astronomy or physics with their passion and stunning visuals. Designers re-energise companies with their radical, exciting visions. Business leaders convince their staff that they really can turn things around.
An audience watching an inspirational presentation is not going to take away lots of facts and figures. What’s important is their emotional and intellectual engagement with the speaker, their shared sense of purpose. One way to build that engagement is with your structure.
From dark to light
The most inspiring presentations are so often born of shared struggle. On 13 May 1940, Winston Churchill addressed the British parliament – and the British people listening on their radios – in the darkest days of the Second World War.
He was brutally realistic in his assessment of the current position: ‘We have before us many, many long months of struggle and of suffering.’ He then set out his policy: ‘To wage war by sea, land and air, with all our might … against a monstrous tyranny’, and the prize: ‘Victory, however long and hard the road may be.’
In difficult situations, audiences immediately see through false hope and empty rhetoric. They want honest acknowledgement, and the determination and clear strategy to lead them to the future.
We can imagine how the same structure could show up in a more business-related context:
‘I’m not going to sugar-coat the figures. We have to change to save jobs and secure our future. There will be dark days and sacrifices along the way, but what’s the hardest part of any turnaround? It’s getting started. To do that, we all need to keep asking two fundamental questions: where can we improve, how can we improve? And if we push hard enough and if we’re utterly relentless, change will come and our momentum will build.’
Are you going to appeal to your audience’s
- habits of thought (current beliefs)?
If your recommendations run counter to their current beliefs, try appealing to their emotions.
3. Writing your presentation script
You don’t have to write a script. Some people put a few PowerPoint slides together and wing it; others make do with bullets on a smartphone, laptop or cue cards. It depends on the event and the presenter.
Writing a full script takes time, but if it’s a very important presentation and you might use it again – perhaps to appeal for investment – it will be worth it.
Some people will write a full script because the company or organisation that’s commissioned a presentation will want to see a copy well ahead of the event (often for legal reasons). Others will write the script, edit it down to the required time and then edit it down again to bullets or notes.
If the presentation is to a small audience, your notes or bullets will suit a more conversational approach. There are no rules here – see what works best for you. But what you must do is know your subject inside out.
To write clearly, you must think clearly and a full script will expose the areas that aren’t clear – where an explanation needs strengthening, for example, or where you should work on a transition.
Timing is everything
A full script also helps with working out timing, and timing is crucial. TED talks, for example, have a strict 18-minute limit, whether in front of an audience or online. That’s short enough to hold attention, but long enough to communicate a key idea. (The ‘I have a dream’ speech lasted 17 minutes 40 seconds and it changed the world.)
It takes a very skilled presenter to go much over 30 minutes. If you are taking questions during or after your presentation , however, it’s fine to build in extra time.
Imagine you’re writing your presentation in full and your slot is 20 minutes. On an A4 page with a 14-point Calibri font and 1.5 line spacing, that will equate to about 10 pages.
You can also divide the page in two, with slides on the left and text on the right (or vice versa). Then you can plan your words and visuals in parallel – and that will be roughly 20 pages.
Script page with a slide on the left-hand side and text on the right. The slide has the heading ‘What is your purpose?’ and has a photo of a smiling person at a whiteboard mid-presentation. The text on the slide reads:
Do you want to:
- do a combination of all three?
The notes next to the slide read:
How should they do that? Should they explain, persuade or inspire – the three key strategies for any presentation? You may need to use several of them to achieve your goal.
The most powerful key on your keyboard – Delete
Use these numbers as your goal, but your first draft will probably be longer. That’s when you start deleting.
Be ruthless. Anything not adding to the story must go, including those anecdotes you’ve been telling for years ( especially those anecdotes). It’s not about what you want to tell the audience, it’s about what they need to hear.
Don’t feel you have to include every single issue either. Dealing with two or three examples in some detail is far better than saying a little bit about many more.
And interpret visual material you’re displaying rather than describing it, just as you wouldn’t repeat the text that’s on the screen. The audience can see it already.
It’s a conversation
Be yourself – don’t write a script that’s not in your style. We want the real you, not a supercharged version.
Some people are naturals when it comes to presenting – which can mean they’ve learned how to draw on their authentic strengths.
Sir David Attenborough is a great example. He has a wide-ranging knowledge of the natural world. He has an infectious passion and enthusiasm for his subject. And most importantly, he doesn’t lecture the camera: he talks naturally to his audience (and he’s now using Instagram to inspire new generations).
You can take a cue from Sir David and make your presentation style your own. Knowing your own strengths and really understanding your why will help you speak with purpose and passion.
And aim to speak naturally. Use conversational, inclusive language. That means lots of personal pronouns ( I believe, we can) and contractions ( Don’t you wonder …, you’re probably thinking …).
Sir David Attenborough introduces his new series, Our Planet at its premiere. He builds up our awareness by layering information alongside arresting statistics. These are framed simply, in relatable terms (‘96% of mass on the planet is us …’), so we easily grasp their shocking significance. He also uses ‘we’ and ‘us’ a lot to underline how this environmental emergency affects us all on ‘the planet we all call home’.
Finding the right words
Imagine you’re talking to someone as you write. And try saying the words out loud – it’s a good way to catch those complex, overlong sentences or particular words that will be difficult to say.
Presentations are not reports that can be reread – the audience has to understand what you are saying in the moment . Don’t leave them wondering what on earth you’re talking about, as they will only fall behind.
So avoid using long or complex words, or words you wouldn’t hear in everyday conversation (if your everyday conversation includes ‘quarks’ and ‘vectors’, that’s fine). And beware of jargon – it can exclude the audience and it quickly becomes clichéd and outdated.
Here are some more hints and tips on how to write effectively for speaking:
Syntax (word order): Disentangle your thoughts and arrange the words in your sentences to be simple and logical. Often, complex syntax shows up when the main point is getting lost inside excess information (or that the speaker is unsure what their main point is).
Pace, rhythm and tone: Varying the pace, rhythm and tone of sentences makes both the speaking and listening experience far more enjoyable.
Make sure the stress falls on the most important words. For example, ‘To be or not to be ‘ (where the stress rises and falls on alternate words) or ‘I have a dream ‘ (where the stress falls on the final word).
Vary the length of sentences and experiment with using very short sentences to emphasise a point.
Play with rhythm by arranging words in pairs and trios. Saying things in threes gives a sense of movement, progression and resolution: Going, going … gone . Saying words in pairs gives a more balanced tone (‘courage and commitment’, ‘energy and effort’) or a sense of tension between the words (‘war and peace’, ‘imports and exports’).
Analogies: Good analogies can work well in presentations because they paint vivid pictures for the audience. The best way to do it is to use either a simile (‘It wasn’t so much a dinner party, more like feeding time at the zoo’) or a metaphor (‘He was the fox and the company was the henhouse’).
Alliteration: This means using two or more words that start with the same sound, like ‘big and bold’, ‘sleek and shiny’ or ‘key components’. On the page alliteration may look contrived, but it can effectively highlight important phrases in a presentation.
Words to avoid: Be careful about using clichés like ‘pushing the envelope’, ‘playing hardball’ and ‘thinking outside the box’. And think carefully about using any word that ends with -ism, -ise, -based, -gate, -focused and -driven.
Be careful with humour too: don’t write jokes unless you can naturally tell them well. Keep the tone light if it fits the occasion, but a badly told joke can be excruciating.
4. How to start your presentation
People tend to remember beginnings and endings the most, so make sure your opening and conclusion are both strong.
You have about a minute to engage an audience. You want them to be intrigued, to want to know more, to come slightly forward in their seats. If you only learn one part of your presentation by heart, make it that minute.
A quick ‘thank you’ is fine if someone has introduced you. A quick ‘good morning’ to the audience is fine too. But don’t start thanking them for coming and hoping they’ll enjoy what you have to say – you’re not accepting an Oscar, and they can tell you what they thought when it’s over. Get straight down to business.
There are four basic types of introduction which will draw your audience in:
- News – ‘Positive Covid-19 tests worldwide have now reached …’
- Anecdotal – ‘About ten years ago, I was walking to work and I saw …’
- Surprise – ‘Every five minutes, an American will die because of the food they eat.’
- Historical – ‘In 1800, the world’s population was one billion. It’s now 7.8 billion.’
You can interpret these beginnings in any number of ways. If you were to say, ‘I have an admission to make …’, we will expect a personal anecdote relating to your main theme. And because you’re alone in front of us, it’s playing on your vulnerability. We’re intrigued straight away, and you’ve established a good platform for the rest of the presentation.
You can also combine these techniques. The historical beginning creates a sense of movement – that was then and this is now – as well as a surprising fact. It may prompt a thought like, ‘Wow, where’s this going?’ And you can trade on this with your own rhetorical question: ‘What does this mean for everyone in this room? It’s not what you think …’.
As well as setting up your story, you need to quickly reassure the audience they’re in safe hands. One way to do that is to give them a map – to tell them where you’re going to take them and what they’re going to see along the way.
Then you’re starting the journey together.
5. How to end your presentation
Your ending is what you want the audience to take away: your call to action, your vision of the future and how they can contribute.
If your presentation is online or to a small group in a small room, your ending is not going to be a battle cry, a call to man the barricades – that would be totally inappropriate. But equally don’t waste it with something flat and uninspiring.
Here are four effective ways to end your talk (like the intros, you can combine them or come up with your own):
- Predict the future – ‘So what can we expect in the next ten years? …’
- Quotation – ‘As our chief exec said at the meeting yesterday, …’
- Repeat a major issue – ‘We can’t carry on with the same old same old.’
- Summarise – ‘Continuous improvement isn’t our goal. It’s our culture.’
Predicting the future fits well with a historical beginning – it completes the arc of your presentation.
If you end with a quotation, make sure it’s relevant and credible – it has to be an authoritative stamp.
Repeating a major issue means pulling out and highlighting a major strand of your presentation, while summarising is about encapsulating your argument in a couple of sentences.
Your ending can also be a change of tone, perhaps signalled by the single word ‘Finally …’. It’s the audience’s cue to come slightly forward again and pay close attention.
As with your opening, it will have more impact if you’ve learned your ending – put down your notes, take a couple of steps towards the audience and address them directly, before a simple ‘Thank you.’
6. Creating your PowerPoint slides
We’ve all been there – watching a seemingly endless, poorly designed slide deck that’s simply restating what the presenter is saying. So common is this tortuous experience that there’s a name for it: Death by PowerPoint. But it doesn’t have to be like this.
Do you need slides at all?
As with your script, the first thing you should ask is ‘Do I actually need this?’ In 2019, Sir Tim Berners-Lee gave the Richard Dimbleby lecture for the BBC. He spoke for about 40 minutes with no autocue (he’d memorised his script) – and no speaker support.
This is a uniquely powerful form of presentation because the audience’s attention is totally focused on that one person. The call to action at the end of a presentation and delivering bad news are also best done without visuals.
But if they’re well-judged and relevant, slides or other visuals can add enormously to a presentation – whether it’s photography, video or the ubiquitous PowerPoint. There are, however, two things everyone should know about PowerPoint in particular:
- It’s incredibly versatile and convenient.
- In the wrong hands, it can be unbearably tedious.
Your PowerPoint slides should not essentially be your cue cards projected onto a screen. They shouldn’t be packed margin to margin with text or full of complex diagrams.
If the presentation is live, the audience has come to watch you, not your slide deck. Online, the deck may have to work harder to sustain visual interest.
As with the script, keep your finger poised over that Delete key when you’re putting the deck together.
How many slides?
There’s no hard-and-fast rule about how many slides you should use, but think in terms of no more than one or two a minute on average. And don’t use more than a couple of short video inserts in a 20-minute presentation.
You might have a section where you show a few slides in a sequence or hold a single slide for a couple of minutes, which is fine. Varying the pacing helps to keep a presentation moving.
Optimise for psychology
As self-professed presentation aficionado David JP Phillips notes in his TEDx talk , people – and that includes your audience – have terrible working memories. If you don’t account for this fact in your slides, your talk will not have a lasting impact. In fact, most of it will be forgotten within around 30 seconds.
To counter this effect, David identifies five key strategies to use when designing your PowerPoint:
- Only have one message per slide: more than that and you’re splitting your audience’s attention.
- Don’t use full sentences on slides, and certainly don’t imagine you can talk over them if you do. People trying to read and listen at the same time will fail at both and absorb nothing. Move your running text into the documentation section instead, and keep the slide content short and sweet.
- People’s focus will be drawn to the biggest thing on the slide. If your headline is less important than the content below it, make the headline text the smaller of the two.
- You can also direct people’s attention using contrast. This can be as simple as guiding their point of focus by using white text (on a dark background) for the words you want to highlight, while the surrounding text is greyed out.
- Including too many objects per slide will sap your audience’s cognitive resources. (Your headline, every bullet, any references, even a page number each count as an object.) Include a maximum of six objects per slide and viewers will give a mental sigh of relief. This will probably mean creating more slides overall – and that’s fine.
More Powerpoint and visual aid tips
Here are a few more guidelines for creating your visual aids:
- Never dive into PowerPoint as job one in creating your presentation. Work out your talk’s structure (at least) before designing your slide deck. Making a genuinely effective PowerPoint requires that you know your subject inside out.
- List any visuals you’ll need as you prepare your script. That terrific photo you saw recently could be difficult to track down, and you might need permission and to pay to use it.
- It bears repeating: keep each slide to one key idea.
- Use the build effect of adding one bullet at a time (or use the contrast trick above) and try not to use more than three bullets per frame (or six objects overall).
- Strip each bullet to the bare minimum – no articles (‘a’, ‘an’ and ‘the’), no prepositions (‘in’, ‘at’, ‘to’ etc) and cut right back on punctuation.
- Every word that’s not there for a reason has to go. Delete, delete, delete.
- Use a ‘walk-in’ slide. Rather than have the audience arrive to a blank screen, this tells them who you are and your presentation’s title.
- Use occasional holding slides in between those with more content – perhaps an image but no text. They give the audience a visual rest and put the focus back on you.
- A plain white background might look fine on a computer monitor, but it will be glaring on a big screen. Invert the norm with a dark background, or use shading or ‘ghosted’ images to break up backgrounds and add visual interest.
- Some colours work better than others on-screen. Blues and greys are soft and easy on the eye. Red is a no-no, whether for backgrounds or text. And if you stick with a light background, favour a more subtle dark grey over black for the text.
- Use sans serif fonts (like Arial, Helvetica or Calibri) and think about point size – make sure it’s easily legible.
- Only use upper case where absolutely necessary.
Images and data
- Photos work well full screen, but they also really stand out well on a black background.
- Make sure your charts and graphics aren’t too complex. The dense information that’s fine on the page will not work on-screen – it’s too much to take in. Graphs behind a TV newsreader are often reduced to a single line going dramatically up or down.
- Don’t present data or graphs and expect them to speak for themselves. You need to find the story and significance in the data and present that .
- Proofread, proofread, proofread – or risk standing in front of an embarrassing spelling mistake.
- Check what laptop they’re using at your venue. If you’ve written your deck on a PC, run it on a PC (and, of course, the same rule applies if you’ve used a Mac).
- If you’ve emailed your presentation to the venue, take a USB copy along as back-up.
- If you’re presenting online, check which platform you’ll be using and get comfortable with it. If someone else will be hosting the event, make sure you arrange a time for a rehearsal, especially if there will be a producer.
7. Delivering your presentation
You’ve put a lot of time and effort into preparing your presentation and now you’ve come to the sharp end – it’s time to stand and deliver.
Run it through
You don’t have to rehearse, but most presenters do and for good reason – it catches weak points and awkward transitions. And, crucially, it bolsters confidence.
Read your script or go through your bullets aloud – it will help to settle your nerves. If you use colleagues as a dummy audience, you can do a sense check too: ‘Does that bit work?’ ‘Have I explained it clearly?’ ‘Do you get the big picture?’ And rehearsing out loud will catch those words and sentences you thought you could say but can’t.
The more you rehearse, the more familiar and natural the presentation will become. Rehearse the technical side too – where the video is going to come in, how you’re going to vary your pace and tone to maintain interest.
Try speaking slightly more slowly than you would normally so the audience catches every word, and don’t be afraid to pause now and again. It gives a breathing space for you and the audience.
Connect with your audience
When you deliver your presentation for real, establish eye contact with the audience, just as you would in a conversation. In a small room with a small audience, talk to individuals. In a larger space, don’t talk to the first couple of rows and ignore the rest – include everyone.
And if you stumble over your words here or there, carry on and don’t dwell on it – you’ll lose your concentration. Audiences are generally forgiving and they might not even notice.
Each audience is unique: they react differently in different places. And although tomorrow might be the tenth time you’ve done the same presentation, it will be the first time this audience sees it. Your duty is to keep it fresh for them.
A final point
This is your presentation – you’re in control and the audience needs to feel they’re in safe hands.
It’s perfectly natural to feel nervous , but it’s the thought of doing it that’s the worst bit. Once you get going – and especially when you sense the audience is with you – the nerves will start to disappear. Try to enjoy it. If you enjoy it, it’s far more likely the audience will too.
And remember: everyone wants you to do well.
8. How to present online
Taking to Zoom or another online platform to present was once the exception. These days, online presenting is as essential a skill as presenting in person.
The switch to online can be nerve-wracking and cause even usually skilled presenters to falter. But there’s no need for that to happen.
Indeed, all of the advice we’ve talked about on preparing, structuring and writing for in-person presenting is equally relevant for your online delivery. You just need to be ready for the unique challenges that remote presentations pose.
An obvious one is that while you still have an audience, it will probably be muted and possibly even unseen (if webcams are switched off). This makes it far more difficult to gauge audience reaction, and if the event is pre-recorded, there might not be any at all – at least not immediately. Clapping and laughing emojis are not quite like the real thing.
Keep eye contact
But although your audience may be many miles away, there are still ways you can – and should – create a sense of connection with them. Your presentation will have much more impact if you do.
Whether the event is live or recorded, at least start with your webcam on (unless you really can only use slides). If it’s an option and feels appropriate, consider keeping your camera on throughout – remember, you are the presentation as much as any visuals.
If you will be on display, make sure you know where your webcam’s lens is and at key moments of your talk look directly into it – and out at your audience – to punctuate those points.
And don’t look at a second screen to cue up your PowerPoint – viewers will think your attention is wandering.
Engage your online audience
Being an engaging speaker is always important, but remember that the online world is already a place we associate with distraction. It’s also easier for a viewer behind their laptop to disguise their wandering attention than it would be for one in an auditorium or boardroom.
This isn’t to say your audience don’t want to give you their attention. But it is more important than ever to keep your presentation sharp and concise. Revisit your structure, your script or cue cards and your slides. Take a really critical eye to it and (as always) delete, delete, delete anything that’s not directly relevant.
If it works for your format, you can look at making your presentation interactive. You can then break the content into short segments, interspersed with comment, polls, questions and discussion. The variety will be a welcome change for your viewers.
Your visuals are part of what will keep people with you – along with the interplay you create between you and them. This means following the best-practice guidance we covered earlier is even more important.
Using Zoom for your presentation? Master the art of online delivery through this simple mix of set-up, delivery and technical tricks @EmphasisWriting Click To Tweet
Modulate your voice
Your tone of voice is extremely important here because presenting online is like radio with pictures. When people say ‘You have a great voice for radio’ what they mean is that it’s easy to listen to, often because you’re using quite a low-pitched, warm and relaxed register.
Listen to voices on the radio and voiceovers and identify the ones you particularly enjoy. What do you like about them? Why do you enjoy some voices and not others?
A flat, unmodulated voice, for instance, is difficult to listen to for long periods (and isn’t likely to inspire anyone).
Experiment with intentionally adding energy to your voice, as internet audio can have a dulling effect. As our trainer Gary Woodward puts it: ‘Turn up the enthusiasm dial even higher than you think, to make sure it comes through.’ And always vary your pace and tone as you would in a normal conversation.
And if it suits the tone of your talk, smile now and again. Smiling is contagious, and people will hear it in your voice even if they can’t see you.
Perfect your transitions
One of the other key challenges of remote presentations is that you have another layer of technology to wrestle with: sharing your PowerPoint online.
This means that many presentations begin with the popular catchphrase ‘Can you see my screen?’
This can also cause many presenters to stumble through their transitions, making the links between their slides clunky. And while remote audiences may be forgiving, for a slick presentation it’s best to prevent these sort of fumbles.
Naturally, practice plays a part here. But you can also give yourself the advantage with your set-up.
Dave Paradi from Think Outside the Slide explains one great way of setting up Zoom so you can smoothly cue up and run your slide deck – and be certain what’s being displayed.
You’ll even be able to see the rest of your screen (but the audience won’t). As you’ll be able to see what’s coming up, your transitions can also be seamless.
The trick is to use one of Zoom’s advanced settings after you hit ‘Share screen’, to share only a portion of your screen:
Advanced screensharing options pop-up box in Zoom, with the options ‘Portion of Screen’, ‘Music or Computer Sound Only’ and ‘Content from 2nd Camera’. The ‘Portion of Screen’ option is highlighted in blue.
This will give you a frame you can move to the part of the screen you want the audience to see.
Put your PowerPoint slides into ‘presenter view’ before launching the screenshare. Then you’ll be able to see the upcoming slides and your notes throughout, and your animations (like build slides) will work as normal.
Zoom’s ‘portion of screen’ setting in action
Presenter view in PowerPoint, with the current displayed slide on the left and the upcoming slide displaying smaller on the right, with notes below it. There is a notification saying ‘You are screen sharing’ at the top and a sharing frame positioned around the current slide.
The other part of the trick? Set it up in advance shortly before you’re due to speak. Once you’re happy with the set up, you can stop sharing until it’s time to kick off your talk. When you return to ‘Share screen’ again, it will reopen the frame in the same place.
Dave shows you the process in this video:
Five practical tips for a truly professional online presentation
You’re happy with the content of your talk, you’ve ruthlessly streamlined your slides and mastered your radio voice. Now just make sure you cover these crucial practicalities for a polished presentation:
1. Create a good space Make sure you have your environment well set up:
- Keep the background on display as tidy and minimalist as possible – a plain wall or backdrop is great, if you can.
- Manage and minimise background noise (shut the window, ensure your phone’s on silent, put the cat out, make sure someone’s watching the kids in another room – whatever it takes).
- Check your lighting: have your light source in front of you, not behind you (or you’ll be in shadow).
- Set up your computer or device at eye level so that you are well-framed and facing it straight on – avoid looming above it while providing a lovely view into your nostrils.
2. Think about your appearance Dress in the same way you would if the presentation were in person, and judge your choice of attire based on the formality of the event and your audience.
3. Practise! Run through the presentation and rehearse the technical side. Practise your transitions, including the initial cueing up of your slides (perhaps using the Zoom tip above), so that you can be confident in doing it all smoothly.
4. Be primed and ready Log in early on the day of your talk. Check all your tech is working, get your headset on and ensure everything is set up well ahead of time. This will save any last-minute issues (and stress) and means you can hit the ground running.
5. Stand and deliver Even online, consider giving your presentation standing up, if you can do so comfortably (adjusting your device or webcam accordingly). This may put you more into a presenting frame of mind and will differentiate you from most remote presenters.
Are you still there?
Live audiences have a group dynamic – as soon as a few people start laughing it becomes infectious and the others join in. It’s naturally different online. But that doesn’t have to throw you.
You might not get that immediate feedback, but don’t overcompensate and feel you have to win them back.
Yes, it’s often more difficult to gauge an audience’s reaction online – especially if their audio is muted and their webcams off. Yes, this can be daunting. But they are still out there listening. You may or may not hear (or see) laughter, but they could still be smiling and very interested in what you have to say. Have faith in your own content. Whatever form your delivery will take, keep coming back to your purpose and message for giving this talk – and keep considering the people you’ll be talking to. Whether the address will be online or in person, it is keeping this focus which is the key to every powerful presentation.
Ready to learn even more? Work one-to-one on your presentation-writing skills with one of our expert trainers or join our scheduled presentation-writing courses . If your team are looking to upskill, we also offer tailored in-house training . And if fear of presenting is holding your team back, check out our in-house course The reluctant presenter .
Image credit: lightpoet / Shutterstock
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These days he's one of Emphasis' top business-writing trainers, but in previous career lives Jack has written for many public and private sector organisations. He has an in-depth knowledge of the engineering and manufacturing sectors, particularly the UK automotive industry. As the lead scriptwriter for chairmen and CEOs, he has been responsible for proposals, pitches and reports as well as high-profile speeches and global product launches.
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Starting a presentation in english: methods and examples.
- By Jake Pool
If you’re going to make it in the professional world, most likely you’ll have to give a presentation in English at some point. No reason to get nervous!
Most of the work involved lies in the introduction. You may or may not need an English presentation PPT file, your topic, audience, or time limit may vary, but a strong opening is a must no matter what! Everything that follows can build from the opening outline you present to your audience.
Let’s look at some guidelines for starting a presentation in English. If you can master this part, you’ll never have to worry about the rest!
Opening in a Presentation in English
While it’s important to have your entire presentation organized and outlined, planning and organization are especially important in the introduction. This is what will guide you through a clear and concise beginning. Let’s look at how to start a presentation with well-organized thoughts .
- Introduce yourself and welcome everyone.
- State the purpose of your presentation
- Give a short overview of the presentation
As we say, it’s as easy as 1-2-3. (No need for a more detailed English presentation script!) Let’s examine the first step.
1. Introduce Yourself & Welcome Everyone
The self-introduction is your opportunity to make a good first impression. Be sure to open with a warm welcome and use language that is familiar and natural. Based on your audience, there are a few different expressions you can use to start your presentation.
If you’re presenting to coworkers who may already know you:
- Hello, [name] here. I would like to thank you all for your time. As you may know, I [describe what you do/your job title] I look forward to discussing [topic] today.
- Good morning/afternoon/evening everyone. Thank you for being here. For those who don’t know me, my name is [name], and for those who know me, hello again.
If you’re presenting to people you’ve never met:
- Hello everyone, it’s nice to meet you all. My name is [name] and I am the [job/title].
- Hello. Welcome to [event]. My name is [name] and I am the [job/title]. I’m glad you’re all here.
There are certainly more ways to make an introduction. However, it’s generally best to follow this format:
- Start with a polite welcome and state your name.
- Follow with your job title and/or the reason you’re qualified to speak on the topic being discussed.
2. State the Purpose of Your Presentation
Now that your audience knows who you are and your qualifications, you can state the purpose of your presentation. This is where you clarify to your audience what you’ll be talking about.
So, ask yourself, “ What do I want my audience to get from this presentation? ”
- Do you want your audience to be informed?
- Do you need something from your audience?
- Do you want them to purchase a product?
- Do you want them to do something for the community or your company?
With your goal in mind, you can create the next couple of lines of your presentation. Below are some examples of how to start.
- Let me share with you…
- I’d like to introduce you to [product or service]
- Today I want to discuss…
- I want to breakdown for you [topic]
- Let’s discuss…
- Today I will present the results of my research on [topic]
- By the end of this presentation, you’ll understand [topic]
- My goal is to explain…
- As you know, we’ll be talking about…
When talking about the purpose of your presentation, stick to your goals. You purpose statement should be only one to three sentences. That way, you can give your audience a clear sense of purpose that sets them up for the rest of the presentation.
3. A Short Overview of the Presentation
The final step in starting your presentation is to give a short outline of what you’ll be presenting. People like a map of what to expect from a presentation.
It helps them organize their thoughts and gives a sense of order. Also, it lets the audience know why they’re listening to you. This is what you’ll use to grab their attention, and help them stay focused throughout the presentation.
Here are some examples of how you can outline your presentation:
- Today, I’m going to cover… Then we’ll talk about… Lastly, I’ll close on…
- We’re going to be covering some key information you need to know, including…
- My aim with this presentation is to get you to… To do that we’ll be talking about…
- I’ve divided my presentation into [number] sections… [List the sections]
- Over the next [length of your presentation] I’m going to discuss…
That’s it! It’s as simple as 1-2-3. If you have a fear of public speaking or are not confident about presenting to a group of people, follow these three steps. It’s a simple structure that can get you off to a good start. With that in mind, there are other ways to bring your introduction to the next level too! Read on for bonus tips on how to really engage your audience, beyond the basics.
For a Strong Presentation in English, Engage your Audience
Presentations aren’t everyone’s strongest ability, and that’s OK. If you’re newer to presenting in English, the steps above are the basics to getting started. Once you’re more comfortable with presenting, though, you can go a step further with some extra tricks that can really wow your audience.
Mastering the skill of engaging an audience will take experience. Fortunately, there are many famous speakers out there you can model for capturing attention. Also, there are some common techniques that English-speakers use to gain an audience’s attention.
*How and when you use these techniques in your introduction is at your discretion, as long as you cover the 3 steps of the introduction outline that we discussed earlier.*
Do or say something shocking.
The purpose of shocking your audience is to immediately engage them. You can make a loud noise and somehow relate the noise to your presentation. Or, you can say, “ Did you know that… ” and follow with a shocking story or statistic. Either way, the objective is to create surprise to draw their attention.
Tell a story
Telling a story related to your presentation is a great way to get the audience listening to you.
You can start by saying, “ On my way to [location] the other day… ” or “ On my way here, I was reminded of… ” and then follow with a story. A good story can make your presentation memorable.
Ask your audience to take part
Sometimes a good introduction that captures attention will involve asking for help from the audience. You can ask the audience to play a quick game or solve a puzzle that’s related to your presentation. Also, you could engage the audience with a group exercise. This is a great way to get people involved in your presentation.
There are many more ways to engage the audience, so get creative and see what you can think up! Here are some resources that will help you get started.
Also, if you want to get better at public speaking (and help your English speaking too!), a great organization to know about is the Toastmasters . The organization is dedicated to helping you be a better speaker, and there are many local groups in America. They offer free lessons and events to help you master your English speaking, and also offer additional help to paying members.
A presentation in English? No problem, as long as your introduction sets you up for success . Admittedly, this can be easier said than done. Native speakers and non-native speakers alike sometimes struggle with getting a good start on their English presentation. But the advice above can help you get the confidence you need to lay a good foundation for your next speech !
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How to Organize Your Introduction for a Presentation in English
May 1, 2018 | Business Professional English , Presentations in English
This lesson on how to organize your introduction for a presentation in English has been updated since its original posting in 2016 and a video has been added.
Getting ready to present in English? Here’s how to make sure your introduction for a presentation in English is successful.
But first… When you think about a presentation, I know you’re thinking about something like a TED video or a presentation at a conference. You’re thinking about a speech, with PowerPoint slides and a big audience.
But did you know we use the same skills when we share new information or ideas with our work colleagues? Or when we tell stories to our friends and family? The situation or speaking task may be different but we still use the same skills.
When presenting information or telling stories, we need to:
- Capture a listener’s attention
- Share information, ideas, or opinions
- Give the important details
- Make your information memorable
- Get your audience (family, friends, colleagues or strangers) to agree, to take action, to change their mind, etc.
So today you’re going to learn how to take the first big step in your English presentation: how to start with a great introduction.
The introduction is the most important part of your presentation. It is the first impression you’ll make on your audience. It’s your first opportunity to get their attention. You want them to trust you and listen to you right away.
However, that first moment when you start to speak is often the hardest. Knowing how to best prepare and knowing what to say will help you feel confident and ready to say that first word and start your presentation in English.
Be sure to include these 5 things in your inroduction.
Lesson by Annemarie
How to Organize Your Introduction for a Presentation in English and Key Phrases to Use
Organize Your Introduction Correctly
Okay, first let’s focus on what you need to include in your English introduction. Think of this as your formula for a good introduction. Using this general outline for your introduction will help you prepare. It will also help your audience know who you are, why you’re an expert, and what to expect from your presentation.
Use this general outline for your next presentation:
- Welcome your audience and introduce yourself
- Capture their attention
- Identify your number one goal or topic of presentation
- Give a quick outline of your presentation
- Provide instructions for how to ask questions (if appropriate for your situation)
Use Common Language to Make Your Introduction Easy to Understand
Great, now you have the general outline of an introduction for a speech or presentation in English. So let’s focus on some of the key expressions you can use for each step. This will help you think about what to say and how to say it so you can sound confident and prepared in your English presentation.
“The introduction is the most important part of your presentation. It is the first impression you’ll make on your audience. It’s your first opportunity to get their attention. You want them to trust you and listen to you right away.”
Welcome Your Audience & Introduction
It is polite to start with a warm welcome and to introduce yourself. Everyone in the audience will want to know who you are. Your introduction should include your name and job position or the reason you are an expert on your topic. The more the audience trusts you, the more they listen.
- Welcome to [name of company or event]. My name is [name] and I am the [job title or background information].
- Thank you for coming today. I’m [name] and I’m looking forward to talking with you today about [your topic].
- Good morning/afternoon ladies and gentlemen. I’d like to quickly introduce myself. I am [name] from [company or position]. (formal)
- On behalf of [name of company], I’d like to welcome you today. For those of you who don’t already know me, my name is [name] and I am [job title or background]. (formal)
- Hi everyone. I’m [name and background]. I’m glad to be here with you today. Now let’s get started. (informal)
Capture Their Attention
For more information about how to best capture your audience’s attention and why, please see the next session below. However, here are a few good phrases to get you started.
- Did you know that [insert an interesting fact or shocking statement]?
- Have you ever heard that [insert interesting fact or shocking statement]?
- Before I start, I’d like to share a quick story about [tell your story]…
- I remember [tell your story, experience or memory]…
- When I started preparing for this talk, I was reminded of [tell your story, share your quote or experience]…
Identify Your Goal or Topic of Presentation
At this stage, you want to be clear with your audience about your primary topic or goal. Do you want your audience to take action after your talk? Is it a topic everyone is curious about (or should be curious about)? This should be just one or two sentences and it should be very clear.
- This morning I’d like to present our new [product or service].
- Today I’d like to discuss…
- Today I’d like to share with you…
- What I want to share with you is…
- My goal today is to help you understand…
- During my talk this morning/afternoon, I’ll provide you with some background on [main topic] and why it is important to you.
- I will present my findings on…
- By the end of my presentation, I’d like for you to know…
- I aim to prove to you / change your mind about…
- I’d like to take this opportunity to talk about…
- As you know, this morning/afternoon I’ll be discussing…
Outline Your Presentation
You may have heard this about presentations in English before:
First, tell me what you’re going to tell me. Then tell me. And finally, tell me what you told me.
It sounds crazy and weird, but it’s true. This is how we structure presentations in English. So today we’re focusing on the “First, tell me what you’re going to tell me” for your introduction. This means you should outline the key points or highlights of your topic.
This prepares your listens and helps to get their attention. It will also help them follow your presentation and stay focused. Here are some great phrases to help you do that.
- First, I’m going to present… Then I’ll share with you… Finally, I’ll ask you to…
- The next thing I’ll share with you is…
- In the next section, I’ll show you…
- Today I will be covering these 3 (or 5) key points…
- In this presentation, we will discuss/evaluate…
- By the end of this presentation, you’ll be able to…
- My talk this morning is divided into [number] main sections… First, second, third… Finally…
On Asking Questions
You want to be sure to let you audience know when and how it is appropriate for them to ask you questions. For example, is the presentation informal and is it okay for someone to interrupt you with a question? Or do you prefer for everyone to wait until the end of the presentation to ask questions?
- If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to interrupt me. I’m happy to answer any questions as we go along.
- Feel free to ask any questions, however, I do ask that you wait until the end of the presentation to ask.
- There will be plenty of time for questions at the end.
- Are there any questions at this point? If not, we’ll keep going.
- I would be happy to answer any questions you may have now.
Capture Your Audience’s Attention
Do you feel unsure about how to capture the attention of your audience? Don’t worry! Here are some common examples used in English-speaking culture for doing it perfectly!
Two of the most famous speakers in the English-speaking world are Steve Jobs and Oprah Winfrey. While Steve Jobs is no longer living, people still love to watch his speeches and presentations online. Oprah is so famous that no matter what she does, people are excited to see her and listen to her.
BUT, if you listen to a speech by Steve Jobs or Oprah Winfrey, they still work to get your attention!
The don’t start with a list of numbers or data. They don’t begin with a common fact or with the title of the presentation. No – they do much more.
From the moment they start their speech, they want you to listen. And they find interesting ways to get your attention. In his most famous speeches, Steve Jobs often started with a personal story. And Oprah often starts with an inspiring quote, a motivational part of a poem, or a personal story.
These are all great ways to help your audience to listen to you immediately – whether your presentation is 3 minutes or 20 minutes.
Here’s how you can do it.
Like Steve Jobs or Oprah Winfrey, start with a:
- Personal story or experience
- Motivational quote or line from a poem or book
- Joke (be careful with this – make sure it translates easily to everyone in the audience!)
- Shocking, bold statement (Think of Steve Jobs’ quote: “ Stay hungry. Stay Foolish .”)
- Rhetorical question ( =a question that you don’t want an answer to; the focus is to make someone think)
And finally, consider audience participation. Ask a question and get your audience to respond by raising hands.
Get the complete Presentations in English Series:
Part 1: How to Prepare for Your Presentation in English
Part 2: How to Start with a Great Introduction in Your Presentation
Part 3: How to Organize Your Presentation in English
Part 4: How to End Your Presentation Powerfully
As I mentioned in the video, I have two question for you today:
- What is the best introduction you’ve ever heard? Have you watched a TED Talk or a presentation on YouTube with a great introduction? Tell me about it. What do you think was great about the introduction?
- What frightens you the most about preparing your introduction in a presentation? Share your concerns with me so I can help you overcome any challenges you have.
Be sure to share in the comments below to get feedback from me and to learn from others in the Confident English Community.
Have a great week! ~ Annemarie
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Thank you, Annemarie. thanks for the generosity of sharing useful and systemative information and content.
This is really a very informative message thank you.. And it’s help me a lot
hi thank you for this It was helpful. You used simple english that i understood well.
How to start with a great presentation on composition
Thankyou for the information . It was much helpful . I will definitely use this information in my presentation 🤗
Hi, I am Thang Sok Do you have a Sample presentation?
This was helpful but can you please tell me how to start a presentation in college because this is for work in a company. My presentation is on laboratory skills and all that
Thank you for this video! I’ve learned quite a lot and will want to use all these knowledge in presenting my thesis proposal in 2 months. About your question no. 2, I’d just like to share that the mere fact of presenting in front of many respected professionals makes me already nervous and shaky even if i have studied everything about my presentation. What do you think should i do to deal with my concern?
Could you give me advise, how to start learning English for beginner.How to prepare presentation on any topic and how to make interesting..
Thank u so much for valuable advice. Definitely I will used this in my presentation!!
Thank you very much for these kind of useful advice. I hope my first presentation will be exciting for the audience.Your video is helping me again thanks a lot 😊
hi, i’m B.COM student and I have to prepare presentation about identifying business opportunities. How to start and an attractive attention to my audience.. Please Help me…
very nise and educative piece of information thank you nancy nairobi kenya
i am starting a video speech shooting in night about a famouse person how do i start my speech with a good intro.
Hi again how do you do a introduction goodbye
Hi i do not know what you are talking about
Hi Kate, I’m sorry to hear you’re not sure about the content. I recommend reviewing the video carefully if you haven’t already. Is there something specific you have a question about?
thanks a lot for guiding in such an easier way.
Your write-up on introduction helped a lot, thank you Annemarie. I work for cross-geography team and greetings get lengthy as timezones are different e.g. “Good evening to those joining from US office and good morning to colleagues from India office”. I replaced that with “Thank you everyone for joining”. Is it okay?
Hi Amit, I’m so glad it was helpful. As for your greeting, both of your options are perfectly appropriate and friendly.
How to introduce group members in online presentation?
Great question! I’d love to use that for a future Confident English lesson.
its amazing. i can’t explain in wording. this material helping me a lot. i am so happy after use this website . its make easy for me preparing my presentation more interesting. i am thankful too u.
thanks! i use your materials to teach my students(clinets) how to prepare a presentation. is it ok to use them on my materials?
Hi! I am a student from the USP from Tuvaluan and i take CEE45 so our assessment 2 is to prepared a group presentation and we presented in school. so need your help for how to start an attractive introduction to my teacher and my fellow students, they already kwow me.
Thank you.. very helpful
It was very use Gul for or presentations
Hi. I am a 1st year BIT student and I have to prepare a presentation on 3D Printing. how to start an attractive introduction to my teachers, when they already know about me? Can you please help me out? Thank you.
I just took 1st place for my paper that I presented at an international students conference. I used a lot of your techniques to improve my speech and I have no words to say how grateful I am to you. Keep up the good work!
😲WOW!! That’s awesome, Andrew. 🙌Congratulations on your presentation. What a wonderful response to your hard work. I’d love to know what you presentation was about. And thank you for sharing your new here. I’m thrilled to know that my techniques were helpful to you.
The title of the presentation was “Handling burnout: A study regarding the the influence of job stressors over military and civilian personel”. I can sent you my paper through email if you would like to see it.
Hi Andrew, what a fascinating topic. And it’s interesting because I just had a newspaper reporter interview me about burnout as a small business owner. Must be a hot topic. 🙂 And sure, I’d love to see it.
🔥❤ too goodd
Hello Annemarie, Thank you so much for one of the best content on the English presentation, I’ve seen. I have a question: Is it impolite or informal to start the presentation without a greeting? I’m asking this question because I’ve seen a lot of TEDTalks and in only a few of them, they greet the audience and in most of it, they quickly go to the “CAPTURING the ATTENTION” with numbers and pictures. I would be so thankful if you could answer this question as soon as possible, my presentation is so close. Best regards, Helia
Hi Helia, What a great question. It has definitely become more common to skip the greeting and go straight to capturing the attention of the audience and you’re right that we often see this in TED talks. I would say it’s best to know your audience and what might be expected. For example, at more formal, traditional conferences or lecture, it might be more appropriate to start with a welcome. I prefer to welcome/thank my audience quickly at the start when I give presentations. A welcome can be very brief, just one sentence, and then you can quickly go into … Read more »
Hi Annemarie I would like to thank you for giving such types of presentation skills but I have a question can you give me some idea about vote of thinks.
I’m glad the lessons are helpful to you. Could you clarify what you mean by ‘vote of thinks?’ I’m not sure I understand that.
Please can you give me some idea about vote of thanks
Could you clarify what you’re asking for, Bello?
Thanks a lot
Glad it was helpful!
it is agood i learn alot from this english class
Hello.i would like to thank you for giving these beautiful tips to start a presentation.This article helped me a lot.
That’s great, Radha. Glad to hear it.
Thanks for your article. It’s simply for interpersonal skill development.
You’re welcome, Mithun. Glad to know it was helpful.
Hi Annemarie . Thank you so much for giving such helpful guildelines it’s really gonna help me
I’m glad it’s helpful, Swetha! 🙂
thank you for help me
You’re very welcome!
Hi Anne Marie, i ‘m from Catalonia and i came across with your site only by chance and i think it’gonna be so helpful for me to pass the next test for c1 level. Several weeks ago i did some rehersals with my presentation and i was so nervous and terrified about what was expected from me.
Some tips in your youtube channel are so cool !!! Thank you.
Hi Tom, I’m thrilled you’ve found this site in your preparations for your English exam and am glad to know it’s helpful! Best of luck as you continue to prepare.
Hi Annemarie Thanks it’s so useful to develop presentation skill. Fatima
You’re very welcome, Fatima! I’m glad it was helpful.
Awesome, especially this simple and clear motto: “First, tell me what you’re going to tell me. Then tell me. And finally, tell me what you told me.” This three sentences exactly explain the content you need to create a memorable presentation.
Yes, I’ve always loved that simple motto on how to do a presentation. 🙂 It’s so easy to remember and tells you exactly what to do.
hello I need to introduce myself to language center. i am going to learn Danish Language and i want to introduce myself to them and i am little bit nervous because my grammar is not good at that level.so will you please guide me how to introduce myself to them with an example. i did go through your examples but that is for professionals and i am just a student (Graduate). I don’t have any experience . Please guide me how to do it.
I was in a confused state about starting a conversation and proceeding in it but when I read the guidelines you mentioned above I became confident. thank you for your innumerable ………….
Thank you so much…… it’s an excellent topic, and it helped me a lot
I’m so glad this was helpful to you! Thank you for sharing.
hi annemarie i have a few questions about a speech i have to make a englishi speech of what i want to become can you help me?
Thank you for the question. I have several lessons on the topic of presentations in English . However, for personal assistance with English or presentations, I only do that through my one-on-one classes .
thank you so much…… it’s really helpful for me….
You’re very welcome, Shalini.
Thanks its really nice to develop the presentation skills
Awesome. I’m glad it was helpful to you, Mohammed.
I have to give a demo on one of your programs next week. I would like you to check my self introduction – Good afternoon everyone and thank you for all of your presence. Before we get into the session I would like to quickly introduce myself. My name is Dinesh . I am working as a Pharmaceutical sale and promotion of the brands for Arrient Healthcare. I am in this filed for the past ten years. Before becoming trainer I worked as a medical representatives for different pharma company . I am highly interested in learning from people and … Read more »
Please ignore my previous comment. Yea the demo was a success. So hereafter I will say”I have been in this field for the past four years. Actually I worked for different consultancies so I didn’t include an article there.
I have to give a demo on one of your programs next week. I would like you to check my self introduction – Good afternoon everyone and thank you for all of your presence. Before we get into the session I would like to quickly introduce myself. My name is Monica. I am working as a Soft Skill Trainer at Synergy School of Business Skills. I am in this filed for the past four years. Before becoming trainer I worked as a Recruiter for different job consultancy. I am highly interested in learning from people and I think teaching/training is … Read more »
Thank you for sharing your example! One note: “I am in this field for the past four years.” –> Don’t forget, when we’re talking about something that started in the past and continues to now, we use the present perfect. How might you change this sentence to fix the grammar?
Also, we want to add an article to, “… I worked as a recruiter for [a] different job consultancy.”
I wish you much success in your demo this week! Best, Annemarie
Yea the demo was a success! So hereafter I will say”I have been for the past four years. Actually I worked for different consultancies.
I like it but I think capturing their attention is the most difficult part in preparing a presentation. From my little experience, I used to talk about something out of the scope of the presentation in order to grasp their attention. For example, I had a presentation about medical terminology and its parts (suffix, prefix —). So I provided example which is Ultra Violet then I talked about the ultraviolet in the sun and Vitamin D deficiency. They liked the talk because it is very important to them and by this topic I captured their attention more and more.
Hello Fadia, I’m sorry I’m so late in responding to your comment! I agree with you: capturing attention is very challenging to do. It requires understanding your audience, knowing what is important to them, and how to connect with them. In English-speaking culture, we often connect by telling a story or showing we understand a problem the audience has. I think you’re exactly right to talk about something that is maybe “off topic” or out of the scope of the presentation, as you said, to get their attention first. It sounds like you did a great job in your experience!! … Read more »
hi there it was great going through your enlightening presentation skills however i would be even more delighted if you put some quotes for various PPT’s which will give us an instant ideas during the adhoc PPT like myself…just a suggestion.
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How to Create Meaningful Introductions for New Groups
Amber Johnson April 27, 2015 Care for people , Leadership
Whether it’s a conference for work or a dinner party with acquaintances, introductions almost always start the same way:
“so, what do you do for a living”.
For many of us, our work encompasses how we spend the bulk of our waking hours; it is a significant part of our identity. But it is not all of who we are. My colleague Jim’s title, for example, does not tell you that he’s training for a grueling bicycle ride across the Rocky Mountains this summer. Enrique’s title doesn’t tell you that he’s the father of five young children. It may be impressive to know that my friend Torri is one of Chicago’s leading civil rights attorneys, but it’s equally interesting to know she spends her weekends fronting a country music band.
When we identify ourselves by our titles, we miss much of what makes us human. We can also create the impression that our work lives are all that matter. For people who are in transition between places of employment, currently under-employed, or engaged in work that others may find uninteresting, it can bring a conversation to an awkward close.
At the Center for Values-Driven Leadership, we believe that all people matter, and that titles are only one reflection of their contribution to the world. Recently, we welcomed a new cohort to our Ph.D./D.B.A. Program in Values-Driven Leadership , designed for senior executives. These students will work together for two years, so we knew it was important that their first evening together model our commitment to them as whole people, not just people-with-important-titles.
The director of our center, Jim Ludema, asked each student to bring a memento or artifact that represented an important aspect of their life. On their first evening together, instead of playing an ice breaker game or having each individual introduce him or herself by their title and work history, he asked them to introduce themselves using their artifact. “Tell us what it is, and why it’s meaningful to you. Tell us about your family, your hobbies, your approach to life,” he coached them. Each student was given three to four minutes to introduce themselves. You can see some of our students and faculty members, along with their mementos, below.
Some people brought items that were symbolic of their character or leadership philosophies, such as a compass or a Leatherman. Some brought family photos. Others brought small works of art that expressed something meaningful. Some brought hard-earned awards, such as military coins; one woman shared part of her family history in the form of a charm bracelet she’d inherited from her grandmother. The experience was moving, and helped the group make important personal connections.
Tips for Creating Meaningful Introductions for New Groups
Blogger Cadence Turpin offered a challenge in 2014 that inspired many, “Let’s start conversations that don’t begin and end with who has the most interesting job in the room,” she wrote on the Storyline blog . If you want to help a new group deepen connections without turning to résumé-based introductions or campy ice breaker games, consider following these tips.
1. Create space for introductions, rather than letting them be rushed. Real relationships take time. If trusting relationships are important to the work of your new group, then set aside significant time for introduction processes. I remember working with a non-profit executive who would always start conversations with new colleagues by asking about what led them to the organization. As people told their stories, and he shared his, I often watched the clock ticking minutes away: minutes I knew we needed for productive, strategy-driven conversation. It took me two or three meetings under this colleague’s leadership to understand that our work groups were always twice as productive once we’d established trust and understanding through his gently probing questions.
2. Use activities with an appropriate amount of emotional depth. For many of us who have come-of-age professionally in the digital era, there is very little space between our personal and professional selves. But this is not true of everyone; for a variety of reasons, some have learned to be distrustful of sharing their personal selves with colleagues. At the same time, some people emotionally connect to others quickly and can over-share if boundaries aren’t in place.
Because of this, it’s important to create activities that engage the whole person without pushing them into awkward, deeply personal territory. The artifacts exercise discussed above is a good example of an appropriate approach: it allows people to choose what they share at a level of depth they find comfortable.
3. Be supportive and encouraging. Talking in public is difficult for some, even for accomplished professionals. Create an environment that allows for verbal and non-verbal signs of support. Encourage people to listen closely and ask questions if time permits. Applaud for each individual. Provide breaks throughout, so people can attend to important needs (like checking their smartphone) without checking out of the conversation.
4. Encourage the conversation to continue. As the group leader, help your new group participants see how this initial conversation will foster the right working environment for the future. Encourage participants to ask more questions individually at breaks. Remind people that during most of your time together the focus will be on the work, but that each individual enters the group as a whole-person with lives outside the office or team. Establish communication patterns that honor the whole person.
Earlier this month, New York Times columnist David Brooks published a post called The Moral Bucket List . He wrote about two types of virtues, which he called the résumé virtues, and the eulogy virtues. “The résumé virtues are the skills you bring to the marketplace. The eulogy virtues are the ones that are talked about at your funeral — whether you were kind, brave, honest or faithful. Were you capable of deep love?”
Résumé virtues are important: in fact, for the executives we work with, they are absolutely essential. But work is more rewarding, more meaningful, more fun, and more productive when we are also able to develop our “eulogy virtues.” The next time you begin a new work group, or introduce a colleague to someone else, consider the personal virtues and characteristics you could share about him or her. We are more than our titles can ever tell.
_______ Amber Johnson is the Center’s Chief Communications Officer.
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A Simple Way to Introduce Yourself
- Andrea Wojnicki
Think: present, past, future.
Many of us dread the self-introduction, be it in an online meeting or at the boardroom table. Here is a practical framework you can leverage to introduce yourself with confidence in any context, online or in-person: Present, past, and future. You can customize this framework both for yourself as an individual and for the specific context. Perhaps most importantly, when you use this framework, you will be able to focus on others’ introductions, instead of stewing about what you should say about yourself.
You know the scenario. It could be in an online meeting, or perhaps you are seated around a boardroom table. The meeting leader asks everyone to briefly introduce themselves. Suddenly, your brain goes into hyperdrive. What should I say about myself?
You start ruminating about previous self-introductions when you got tongue-tied, when you forgot to mention something important, or worse, when you rambled on for too long. Then, you realize you’re not listening to what the others are sharing. If there was a quiz on everyone’s name, you would fail.
The stress associated with introducing yourself is common and not without warrant. Everyone’s eyes and ears are on you. It’s easy to mess up. On the other hand, self-introductions are the most direct way to reinforce your desired personal brand. And they can be easy to do.
The secret is using a simple framework: Present, past, and future.
Start with a present-tense statement to introduce yourself:
Hi, I’m Ashley and I’m a software engineer. My current focus is optimizing customer experience.
Nice to meet you all. My name is Michael and I’m the creative director. I work in the Brooklyn office.
Of course, what you share will depend on the situation and on the audience. If you are not sure what to share, your name and job title is a great place to start. If there’s an opportunity to elaborate, you can also share other details such as a current project, your expertise, or your geographical location.
The second part of your introduction is past tense. This is where you can add two or three points that will provide people with relevant details about your background. It is also your opportunity to establish credibility. Consider your education and other credentials, past projects, employers, and accomplishments.
My background is in computer science. Before joining this team, I worked with big data to identify insights for our clients in the health care industry.
I’ve been at the firm for eight years. Most recently, I worked on the Alpha Financial account, where last year’s campaign won us a Webby award.
The third and last part in this framework is future-oriented. This is your opportunity to demonstrate enthusiasm for what’s ahead. If you’re in a job interview, you could share your eagerness about opportunities at the firm. If you’re in a meeting, you could express interest in the meeting topic. If you’re kicking off a project with a new team, you could talk about how excited you are, or share your goals for the project.
I’m honored to be here. This project is a significant opportunity for all of us.
I’m excited to work with you all to solve our clients’ biggest challenges!
That’s it for the self-introduction framework. Present, past, future. Eloquent and effective. By using this approach, you’ll not only introduce yourself better, but it also frees you from ruminating on what you’ll say when it’s your turn to introduce yourself and allows you to listen when others introduce themselves. You will also make it easy for the person who introduces themselves after you, since you’ll conclude your self-introduction with positive enthusiasm.
The next time you’re in a meeting and someone says, “Let’s go around the table and introduce ourselves,” you know what to do. Take a slow, deep breath, and think, “Present, past, future.” Then smile and listen to everyone else until it’s your turn. You got this!
- Andrea Wojnicki , MBA, DBA, is an executive communication coach and founder of Talk About Talk, a multi-media learning resource to help executives improve their communication skills.
Group Presentations and Report Writing
This page contains ideas for supporting students as they prepare group presentations and write reports of their group activity. (Other pages under the Group Work heading discuss the benefits and challenges of group work more generally.)
Your students can learn from the experience and findings of other groups by having groups share the results of their work with the rest of the class through group oral presentations, poster presentations and group reports. If you use group writing, you can ask students to provide feedback on the reports of other groups, based on the specified marking criteria.
Presentations and reports might be about the key issues and findings associated with the group task, or the processes of group work – what worked, what didn’t work, and how the group could improve next time – or they might involve a combination of the two.
Helping students plan for group presentations
It's important to be extremely clear about exactly what you want to see in your students' presentations. Ideally, you will guide them around the most common pitfalls that could prevent them from producing high-quality work. A rubric with specific evaluation criteria can be very helpful as students decide how they want to approach the task. At the very least, you will need to tell them their time or word-count limitations and the degree to which you want them to rely on formal, scholarly sources.
You can also give your students some simple guidelines for giving group presentations, to enhance the quality of their future presentations both at university and professionally. You might like to give them the following questions on planning their group presentation. Allow them time in class to discuss the questions and plan their presentations. You might ask them to submit their question responses, so that you can provide some formative feedback before they present.
Student handout 1
In addition, you could provide groups with a checklist, such as the one below, to help them develop a thoughtful and engaging presentation.
Student handout 2
Griffiths University's Oral Communication Toolkit contains resources for you as you support your students in learning oral-presentation skills, as well as a number of handouts that students might find useful when preparing presentations. These include:
- Basic principles of effective communication
- A checklist to help students prepare for oral presentations
- Guidelines for giving seminar presentations
- A planning tool to help students structure their presentation
- Tips for speaking to an audience
- Guidelines for producing visual aids
- Guidelines for answering questions.
Supporting students in writing a group report
Writing a group report requires effective organisation, time management and communication skills. Students often find report writing on their own challenging, and group writing can be even more intimidating if students are not given some guidelines on how to approach it. Without guidelines, one or two students in a group often end up writing the group report, and this can create workload issues, and resentment when marks are distributed.
Support students in writing a group report by providing guidelines for structuring the report and dividing the workload – who will write what sections and take responsibility for tasks such as editing, proofreading and publishing.
Students' approach to a group writing task will depend on the nature of the task. One of the following three options may suit:
Option 1 – One student in the group writes the report on behalf of the group.
This option can result in the writer taking on too much of the workload. It may be suitable, however, if the non-writing members of the group have been given responsibility for other major tasks. The advantages include:
- Groups can choose the best writer in their group.
- The report will have a consistent style.
- The writing will take up less of the group’s time (although it is time consuming for the writer).
The obvious disadvantage is that students, particularly those who could improve their writing skills, do not get the opportunity to practise their writing. In addition, the report does always not benefit from the diverse ideas and experience of the group, and having one writer doesn’t in itself prepare students for a team presentation.
Option 2 – Group members write one section of the report each.
Students divide the task into sections. Each student writes one section, and then the group assembles the report by piecing the sections together.
This might be a suitable option if students are writing about their particular areas of research or expertise. Students may consider this approach more equitable. It also breaks the task down into more-manageable sections.
However, it does not require students to work collaboratively on the report in terms of developing its ideas and shaping its overall structure. Also, it may be difficult to link the sections together and make the report flow; some sections may require more time and effort than others; it may be difficult to coordinate; and students do not get the opportunity to explore other sections through the writing process. Like Option 1, this approach does not always allow students to draw on the collective ideas and diverse experience of the group.
Option 3 – Students write the report collaboratively and experience various roles
While this option may be more time-consuming, it gives students the opportunity to experience report writing as a staged process involving several drafts, revision, rewriting and, importantly, the giving and receiving of feedback.
The following handout makes suggestions for how students might approach a collaborative group report.
Student handout 3
Reporting on group processes.
When students review and report on the processes of group work, they reflect on their experiences as a group and understand better what makes a group work well together.
You can ask students to write their report as individuals or as a team (or perhaps a combination of the two). Encourage them to draw on specific incidents and examples and take an analytical approach (rather than a descriptive one). Instead of focusing on content, students should consider the group's methods and processes and assess their effectiveness. That is, concentrating on how the group worked as a whole rather than on individual members' actions.
Ask your students to reflect on their own individual role within the group: what their contribution was, what role(s) they played, how well they fulfilled their responsibilities and how they could work more effectively in groups in the future.
Use some or all of the following questions to provide a framework for students to report on the processes of group work.
Student handout 4
- Academic presentations: Group presentations
- Student Presentations in a large class setting
- Tips and Strategies Supporting Learners’ Oral Presentations
Aguilera, A., Schreier, J. & Saitow, C. (2017). Using iterative group presentations in an introductory biology course to enhance student engagement and critical thinking . American Biology Teacher , 79(6), 450-445.
Brady, C. & Jung, H. (2019). Group presentations as a site for collective modeling activity . Mathematical and Statistical Science Faculty Research and Publications. Marquette University.
Kawamura, M. (2019). Perceived difficulties in group presentations: Action research as an intervention . International Journal of Learning and Teaching , 5(2), 119-124.
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A good introduction/opener
February 10, 2011 by Ellen Finkelstein 263 Comments
You should start with an upbeat, positive mood. The first impression you make lasts. You want to quickly gain the attention, interest, and respect of your audience. Your first words should be lively, interesting, clear, and simple.
Start by expressing the fact that you’re glad to be there. A statement like, “I’m glad/excited/pleased/thrilled to be here” is almost obligatory. It invites the audience to be glad that they’re there, too. Your excitement is infectious and infuses the session with your energy.
Claudyne Wilder, in the July, 2007 issue of her newsletter, “Wilder’s Presentation Points,” said the following:
“A presenter who says, ‘I know you are busy people and have many things to do. Thank you for coming.’ only reminds everyone of all the things that they aren’t doing because they are sitting and listening. Distracting the audience before the presentation even begins is hardly a positive way to begin!”
Your introduction should answer the following
Who are you?
What is your topic, why is it important.
If you will be introduced, re-mention your name and re-affirm the most important fact about yourself that the audience will find meaningful, such as your experience with the topic. Otherwise, provide a slightly longer introduction, but just enough to let people know why they should listen to you.
Give a brief explanation of your topic, just a little longer than the title of your talk. Don’t give away the secret of your talk, but whet their appetite.
Finally, tell the audience why the topic is important to them. What will they have gained by the time the talk is finished? Don’t feel shy to promise that they’ll learn something useful; they really want to know that.
The entire opening should only take a minute or two. More than that, and it becomes boring because the audience will be impatient to hear the main content of your presentation.
Lori Giovannoni, in her e-book, So You Want to Be a Speaker , says, “Your intro should be well rehearsed, clear and filled with confidence. This is not the time to stammer and stutter and hope for the best. A poor intro will drop the energy in the room and you will spend the next half hour trying to recapture it.”
Here are some other ideas for openers:
- Ask your audience a question and ask them to raise hands in reply. For example, “How many of you regularly give presentations to small audiences of 1 to 10 people?”
- Begin with an interesting, relevant quote. Then use that quote to launch your talk. For example, “Author and columnist Earl Wilson said, ‘If you wouldn’t write it and sign it, don’t say it.’ This gives us a clue as to how you can gain believability from your audience.”
- Mention something another speaker said, or a current event, that is related to your presentation.
- Start with a short, relevant personal story or experience.
When you’ve written your introduction/opening, rewrite it and edit it until you like it. Then practice giving it out loud. Practice again. Time it. Record it and listen to it. Make adjustments and practice the new version. You should be able to speak it out without looking at your notes. When you’re done, you’ll have a great opener to your presentation!
Check out my other post on this topic, “How to start a presentation.”
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Learn easy principles and techniques that designers use. “ Slide Design for Non-Designers ” shows you, step-by-step, how to easily get the results you want. Plus bonus theme, template, sample slides, and 5 short video tutorials to make implementing the principles easy. Updated for PowerPoint 2016/365. Learn more at http://www.ellenfinkelstein.com/pptblog/slide-design-for-non-designers/
“101 Tips Every PowerPoint User Should Know” is for everyone who never took a course or read a book about PowerPoint! These tips will fill in the gaps, speed up your work, make presentations easier, and help you get better results. Now updated through PowerPoint 2016 and Office 365. Learn more at http://www.ellenfinkelstein.com/pptblog/101-tips/
- Create a looping introduction
- How to start a presentation
- Start your presentation BIG
- Use the 4 principles of meaningful communication
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I am 6th grade and I need to do the presentation about Bosnia and Herzegovina… And everyone knows my name because they all are my friends… I think it would be weird for me to introduce myself… What should I do to get people’s attention? Our teacher said that he is fairly disappointed about our introduction and conclusion… I would be thankful if you help me
Esther, You are right that you don’t need to introduce yourself in a classroom of your classmates. One way to get people’s attention would be to find some surprising fact about Bosnia and Herzegovina. Then you could start with, “Do you know that ….?” For example, you could ask your parents and parents of your friends where they are — show them a map. I bet that almost no one will be able to find them on the map. So you could start with, “Do you know that 90% of people don’t know where Bosnia and Herzegovina are?” Or you … Read more »
Hi,i am a 3rd year B.E student.I have to do the presentation about Global Wireless e-Voting.can you please help me, how to start my presentation and how to gain the attention of my audience?
hi i am a sophmore , and me and two other ppl r presenting a powerpoint on pandora (a godess) my teacher explained that “we should do an interesting introduction not just say,” my name is…this is a powerpoint on pandora” im not sure how my intro should be. help?
What is an interesting or surprising fact about Pandora? Start with that. For example, “Did you know that Pandora was the first mortal woman?”
“The first mortal women on earth, the releaser of disease,death and sorrow..pandora” sounds good? (:
and i do have stage fright, teachers have even deducted points off because i start out talking strong but i get real shacky and shy and my voice fades, ive been dealing with this for awhile, any recomdations? (thank you so much for your help)
Practice more. Videotape yourself and watch the videotape. Practice on your friends. Take a deep breath between sections–it’s good to pause! Don’t be too formal, be more conversational.
Yes, good start.
hye..i m a 9th standard student,and i want to give an introduction…on the topic lokpal bill.so would you please tell me..how to began my presentation…
Ishika, I don’t recognize that name, “lokpal bill.” Is it a person? If so, perhaps you can start with a surprising fact. Good luck!
Hi I am a 6th grader and I am doing a presentation on Justin Bieber and I dont know how to start it. Can you please help me?
Find some strange or funny fact about him and start, “Did you know that ….? That will get your audience interested. Maybe find a funny photo, too. Good luck!
Hello. I am an international researcher at a University and I am supposed to present my project in an international competition in from of a panel of internation judges. How do I introduce myself before I go to the main topic of my presentation? like who I am, where I am from, what do i do? Is it possible to provide me with a sentence? Thank you.
There won’t be any introduction for you at all? Not even your name? There won’t be a printed item with the list of presenters? If not, or even if there is, I would work it into the beginning of the presentation rather than a sentence before your topic. Is the competition based on the research — who did the best research? You could simply put your name and university on the title slide under the name of your presentation/research. You don’t need to say anything. Focus on the research. But, if you want to tell a story about how you … Read more »
Thank you. I will be starting with a story. I had an one on one coaching recently regarding this competition and I had my name and university on my slide just below my topic. After the presentation, one of the judge mentioned that I did not properly introduce myself, like my background, where I am from and so on. The reason was because I have a french accent, and the judge was wondering where I was from an so on.
Hi , I am doing a presentation about paper lantern and I don’t know how to start it. Can you please help me?
I’m not sure what you could say about paper lanterns, but perhaps start with a question to the audience, asking them what they use them for. Do something to engage the audience. Good luck!
i have to give a presentation on my internship.. how do i introduce & start my presentation to have a powerful impact on my examiner???
It’s hard to say, since I don’t know what your internship is about. Perhaps find a famous, philosophical quote and relate it to your internship to show you’ve thought deeply about its implications. Perhaps show a diagram placing the company where you worked in the context of the whole world, so they can see that you appreciate the larger impact of what they’re doing. Perhaps use a diagram showing the skills you learned and how they’ll apply to your professional life. Then go on and elaborate. Good luck!
Hi, I am a first year business student and me an my group need to do a presentation about the new venture we created. What would be a good introduction and how can we make our presentation interesting and engaging?
Rose, have you ever watched Shark Tank on TV? I’d recommend it, because the presentations are always engaging. They demo their product, wear costumes, etc. Aside from that, start by talking about the problem that your venture solves and relate it to the audience. “Have you ever experienced that….? Wasn’t it frustrating? How great would it be if….? Good luck!
Hi, i am doing a degree in early years and i have to do a 10 minute power point presentation on language and language theory in the early years. I am a little unsure how to start it because the group i am doing it in front of 5 people who already know my name and my job role?? also the presentation is all about how i promote language theory in my nursery setting so i am a little unsure about how to start it really.
thanks for reading
Tell a short story, ask a question, say a surprising fact, say something that’s different from usual. For example, you could start, “In this program, I’ve learned a lot of theory about language, but when I had an opportunity to use it in a nursery setting, I discovered some valuable approaches.”
hi, i am a student of pharmacy, and i have been given a topic of function of auxin(a phytohormone). can u please help me, that how would i start my topic and introduce myself in front of my classmates, as i’ll be the 3rd member in my group presentation of total 5 members. thanks,
Since I have NO idea what that is, it’s hard to give you an answer. Why is it important or interesting? Any stories about what happens when it doesn’t function properly?
Hi. I have to do a presentation over a lab that I did-oil spill cleanup. I’m not sure how to start. Could you give me some pointers, please? Thanks.
Hi , I am a student in the high school , I am going to give a presentation next week about positive thinking , I wonder how to start my presentation especially that I am with 3 friends in it !
Tell a horror story about an oil spill cleanup or just silently show some photos of birds covered with oil. Something striking.
I have to do a power point presentation in my class. How should I introduce my self – I am also doing business proposal
Unless your teacher expects you to introduce yourself, you don’t need to, since everyone in the class knows you, right? If it’s a huge class, that might be a different story. You could intertwine something about yourself into the business proposal — something about you that led you to decide that this proposal was the right thing.
Hello, Going through your previous replies, i must say you have done a wonderful job sharing your views and responding to each queries. I have one too 🙂 I am close to recruitment in a university as a lecturer, and before the official joining, the faculty head asked me to present a favorite topic of mine in front of the rest of the faculty members. I decided to present my Master’s thesis, but how would I introduce myself in front of my future co-workers? And what other details (apart from education details) would be relevant in the introduction slide?
Samir, Congratulations on your new job! I don’t think you want to put more than your education details on the first slide, but I think you want to say something verbally. You could introduce the topic of your Master’s thesis by saying something about how your background led you to this topic — so I’d add something personal because your future co-workers also want to get to know you as a person — but as a professional person. So don’t make it TOO personal.
i am a first year student and have been asked to make a presentation on myself, introducing myself to my new class mates and i have no clue where and how to start
Think of something unusual or especially interesting about you or your background or your goals and start with that. Then go on to the rest. Good luck!
i’m presenting a powerpoint presentation in front of my classmate together with my groupmates, I just like to have some tips on how to start my topic about recommendation report.?
Hi there, I am a grade 9 student and I have been assigned to do a presentation on the book ‘hatchet, by Gary Paulsen’. I am not too sure about what would be a good introduction to it, keeping everyone interested and involved. your help would be great, Please and Thank you
Since I know nothing about the book, it’s hard to say. Is there a surprising fact that you can find about the author if you do some research? Perhaps you can find a review of the book to find some background information. Did the book have an impact on you that your classmates wouldn’t expect? If the other students haven’t read it, is there a reason you think they should? How might it change their life? Good luck!
Im having a presentation about online shopping and I need help with my intruduction. Would you help me please? Thanks in advance!
Hai,this page is useful to us.I am doing my 3’rd year B.E.(EEE).i am going to present a paper on power electronics and drives.will u pls help me ? in wt way i have to introduce myself and impress my audience to my topic?
Hi Ellen. Judging by the number of comments and hits on this post, it’s a topic on many speakers’ minds! As you say, when speaking, your 1st impression lasts. I agree with many of your points, like the importance of whetting people’s appetites, and saying what they’ll gain. (To me though, saying “I’m glad to be here” seems a bit trite, and the audience doesn’t care (much) how you feel. They’re absorbed by their own needs and reason for attending, especially at the start.) As you say in your post’s last bullet, you can also use a short, relevant story. … Read more »
Hi, I recently join a company, and they told me to do a presentation on SDLC(Software Development Life Cycle. The problem is I don’t know how to introduce myself before the topic begin..
If everyone there knows you, you don’t have to introduce yourself. If they don’t, I suggest that you ask someone else to introduce you and say why you were chosen to do the presentation.
hello thank you for every thing you do. what i need to ask about is i’ll do a presentation of my self as a final test to get a job with the company(oil and gas company) what steps shoud i fallow to present my self as well.
Think about what the employer needs. Rather than talking about yourself, talk about how you can contribute to the success of the company. Do some research on the issues and future direction of the company and address that. Finally, be sure not to use slide after slide of bulleted text. Instead, make the presentation as visual as possible and practice giving it so you know what to say without reading the slides. Good luck!
I am doing a presentation on Emigration to Canada during the Famine. I am giving the talk in front of class mates and don’t want to introduce the presentation by saying ‘Hi my name is’. Can you give me any advice with regards to coming up with an interesting introduction. Much appreciated.
Nichola, I think your instincts are right. I’d just dive right in with a surprising or shocking fact or statistic about the emigration or the famine to bring home the emotional impact the situation had on the people involved. Are ask the audience a question. “What would you do if you had no food and your children were starving?” Good luck with the presentation!
Hi.. Good morning
I am doing a presentation on indian civilisation, can you please help with in how can i start my introduction and how to get the attention of the people listing ?
As I’ve mentioned in other comments, start with a surprising fact. Perhaps something like, “Did you know that Indian civilization ….?”
Hello, I have a presentation on American Conservative Union, and I don’t know how should I introduce the topic? What am I asking you is the introduction of this topic. Thank you
How To Write A Presentation: A Step-by-Step Guide with Best Examples
Jane Ng • 22 Aug 2023 • 7 min read
Is it difficult starting of presentation? You’re standing before a room full of eager listeners, ready to share your knowledge and captivate their attention. But where do you begin? How do you structure your ideas and convey them effectively?
Take a deep breath, and fear not! In this article, we’ll provide a road map on how to write a presentation covering everything from crafting a script to creating an engaging introduction.
So, let’s dive in!
Table of Contents
What is a presentation , what should be in a powerful presentation.
- How To Write A Presentation Script
- How to Write A Presentation Introduction
Tips for better presentation.
- How to start a presentation
- How to introduce yourself
Start in seconds.
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Presentations are all about connecting with your audience.
Presenting is a fantastic way to share information, ideas, or arguments with your audience. Think of it as a structured approach to effectively convey your message. And you’ve got options such as slideshows, speeches, demos, videos, and even multimedia presentations!
The purpose of a presentation can vary depending on the situation and what the presenter wants to achieve.
- In the business world, presentations are commonly used to pitch proposals, share reports, or make those sales pitches.
- In educational settings, presentations are a go-to for teaching or delivering engaging lectures.
- For conferences, seminars, and public events—presentations are perfect for dishing out information, inspiring folks, or even persuading the audience.
How To Write A Presentation? What should be in a powerful presentation? A great presentation encompasses several key elements to captivate your audience and effectively convey your message. Here’s what you should consider including in a winning presentation:
- Clear and Engaging Introduction: Start your presentation with a bang! Hook your audience’s attention right from the beginning by using a captivating story, a surprising fact, a thought-provoking question, or a powerful quote. Clearly state the purpose of your presentation and establish a connection with your listeners.
- Well-Structured Content: Organize your content logically and coherently. Divide your presentation into sections or main points and provide smooth transitions between them. Each section should flow seamlessly into the next, creating a cohesive narrative. Use clear headings and subheadings to guide your audience through the presentation.
- Compelling Visuals: Incorporate visual aids, such as images, graphs, or videos, to enhance your presentation. Make sure your visuals are visually appealing, relevant, and easy to understand. Use a clean and uncluttered design with legible fonts and appropriate color schemes.
- Engaging Delivery: Pay attention to your delivery style and body language. You should maintain eye contact with your audience, use gestures to emphasize key points and vary your tone of voice to keep the presentation dynamic.
- Clear and Memorable Conclusion: Leave your audience with a lasting impression by providing a strong closing statement, a call to action, or a thought-provoking question. Make sure your conclusion ties back to your introduction and reinforces the core message of your presentation.
How To Write A Presentation Script (With Examples)
To successfully convey your message to your audience, you must carefully craft and organize your presentation script. Here are steps on how to write a presentation script:
1/ Understand Your Purpose and Audience:
- Clarify the purpose of your presentation. Are you informing, persuading, or entertaining?
- Identify your target audience and their knowledge level, interests, and expectations.
- Define what presentation format you want to use
2/ Outline the Structure of Your Presentation:
Strong opening: .
Start with an engaging opening that grabs the audience’s attention and introduces your topic. Some types of openings you can use are:
- Start with a Thought-Provoking Question: “Have you ever…?”
- Begin with a Surprising Fact or Statistic: “Did you know that….?”
- Use a Powerful Quote: “As Maya Angelou once said,….”
- Tell a Compelling Story : “Picture this: You’re standing at….”
- Start with a Bold Statement: “In the fast-paced digital age….”
Clearly state your main points or key ideas that you will discuss throughout the presentation.
- Clearly State the Purpose and Main Points: Example: “In this presentation, we will delve into three key areas. First,… Next,… Finally,…. we’ll discuss….”
- Provide Background and Context: Example: “Before we dive into the details, let’s understand the basics of…..”
- Present Supporting Information and Examples: Example: “To illustrate…., let’s look at an example. In,…..”
- Address Counterarguments or Potential Concerns: Example: “While…, we must also consider… .”
- Recap Key Points and Transition to the Next Section: Example: “To summarize, we’ve… Now, let’s shift our focus to…”
Remember to organize your content logically and coherently, ensuring smooth transitions between sections.
You can conclude with a strong closing statement summarizing your main points and leaving a lasting impression. Example: “As we conclude our presentation, it’s clear that… By…., we can….”
3/ Craft Clear and Concise Sentences:
Once you’ve outlined your presentation, you need to edit your sentences. Use clear and straightforward language to ensure your message is easily understood.
Alternatively, you can break down complex ideas into simpler concepts and provide clear explanations or examples to aid comprehension.
4/ Use Visual Aids and Supporting Materials:
Use supporting materials such as statistics, research findings, or real-life examples to back up your points and make them more compelling.
- Example: “As you can see from this graph,… This demonstrates….”
5/ Include Engagement Techniques:
Incorporate interactive elements to engage your audience, such as Q&A sessions , conducting live polls , or encouraging participation.
6/ Rehearse and Revise:
- Practice delivering your presentation script to familiarize yourself with the content and improve your delivery.
- Revise and edit your script as needed, removing any unnecessary information or repetitions.
7/ Seek Feedback:
You can share your script or deliver a practice presentation to a trusted friend, colleague, or mentor to gather feedback on your script and make adjustments accordingly.
More on Script Presentation
How to Write A Presentation Introduction with Examples
Looking for introduction ideas for presentation? As mentioned earlier, once you have completed your script, it’s crucial to focus on editing and refining the most critical element—the opening of your presentation – the section that determines whether you can captivate and retain your audience’s attention right from the start.
Here is a guide on how to craft an opening that grabs your audience’s attention from the very first minute:
1/ Start with a Hook
To begin, you can choose from five different openings mentioned in the script based on your desired purpose and content. Alternatively, you can opt for the approach that resonates with you the most, and instills your confidence. Remember, the key is to choose a starting point that aligns with your objectives and allows you to deliver your message effectively.
2/ Establish Relevance and Context:
Then you should establish the topic of your presentation and explain why it is important or relevant to your audience. Connect the topic to their interests, challenges, or aspirations to create a sense of relevance.
3/ State the Purpose
Clearly articulate the purpose or goal of your presentation. Let the audience know what they can expect to gain or achieve by listening to your presentation.
4/ Preview Your Main Points
Give a brief overview of the main points or sections you will cover in your presentation. It helps the audience understand the structure and flow of your presentation and creates anticipation.
5/ Establish Credibility
Share your expertise or credentials related to the topic to build trust with the audience, such as a brief personal story, relevant experience, or mentioning your professional background.
6/ Engage Emotionally
Connect emotional levels with your audience by appealing to their aspirations, fears, desires, or values. They help create a deeper connection and engagement from the very beginning.
Make sure your introduction is concise and to the point. Avoid unnecessary details or lengthy explanations. Aim for clarity and brevity to maintain the audience’s attention.
For example, Topic: Work-life balance
“Good morning, everyone! Can you imagine waking up each day feeling energized and ready to conquer both your personal and professional pursuits? Well, that’s exactly what we’ll explore today – the wonderful world of work-life balance. In a fast-paced society where work seems to consume every waking hour, it’s vital to find that spot where our careers and personal lives harmoniously coexist. Throughout this presentation, we’ll dive into practical strategies helping us achieve that coveted balance, boost productivity, and nurture our overall well-being.
But before we dive in, let me share a bit about my journey. As a working professional and a passionate advocate for work-life balance, I have spent years researching and implementing strategies that have transformed my own life. I am excited to share my knowledge and experiences with all of you today, with the hope of inspiring positive change and creating a more fulfilling work-life balance for everyone in this room. So, let’s get started!”
Check out: How to Start a Presentation?
Whether you’re a seasoned speaker or new to the stage, understanding how to write a presentation that conveys your message effectively is a valuable skill. By following the steps in this guide, you can become a captivating presenter and make your mark in every presentation you deliver.
Additionally, AhaSlides can significantly enhance your presentation’s impact. With AhaSlides, you can use live polls, quizzes, and word cloud to turn your presentation into an engaging and interactive experience. Let’s take a moment to explore our vast template library !
Frequently Asked Questions
1/ how to write a presentation step by step .
You can refer to our step-by-step guide on How To Write A Presentation Script:
- Understand Your Purpose and Audience
- Outline the Structure of Your Presentation
- Craft Clear and Concise Sentences
- Use Visual Aids and Supporting Material
- Include Engagement Techniques
- Rehearse and Revise
- Seek Feedback
2/ How do you start a presentation?
You can start with an engaging opening that grabs the audience’s attention and introduces your topic. Consider using one of the following approaches:
3/ What are the five parts of a presentation?
A typical presentation consists of the following five parts:
- Introduction: Capturing the audience’s attention, introducing yourself, stating the purpose, and providing an overview.
- Main Body: Presenting main points, evidence, examples, and arguments.
- Visual Aids: Using visuals to enhance understanding and engage the audience.
- Conclusion: Summarizing main points, restating key message, and leaving a memorable takeaway or call to action.
- Q&A or Discussion: Optional part for addressing questions and encouraging audience participation.
A writer who wants to create practical and valuable content for the audience
More from AhaSlides
How To Present With A Group: 14 Expert Tips
If we consider the research and writing part of a presentation, then a group presentation doesn’t seem that different from a single-person presentation.
If you wish to deliver a successful presentation, you still need to put in a fair deal of individual research, writing, and practice. Even for the presenting bit: when you speak, the onus of delivering a great speech, as well as the audience’s attention, is going to be on you.
However, a group presentation is significantly different from a normal presentation.
While you’ll still have to do your own research, the amount of research you’ll have to do will probably be decreased, as the research material will be divided amongst all the members. Practice and delivery of the speech will not be merely an individual thing: you’ll have to work and synch it with the rest of the group.
Moreover, while it might seem that the individual responsibility is going to reduce if you’re delivering a presentation with more than one person, often the case is quite the opposite. This is because if a single person messes up–or simply doesn’t wish to put in as much effort as the others–the repercussions are going to be faced by the entire group.
However, group presentations don’t necessarily have to be a difficult thing. Think of your most favorite sports team: what makes the team the best? What makes them stand out from other teams? How are they successful?
The answer for what makes a sports team the best isn’t much different from what makes a group presentation the best:
Advance planning and division of work, having a strong leader, fostering a sense of comariderie between group members, as well as staying vigilant and supportive on the big day are the key to delivering an awesome group presentation.
And the goal isn’t as tough to achieve as you might think.
Stick till the end of this article to find out!
What Is A Group Presentation?
A group presentation is a collaborative exercise in which a team of speakers works together to create and deliver a presentation on a given topic. The number of members in a group presentation can range from anything between two to over ten! Group presentations are used in a variety of settings like school, workplace, colleges, seminars, etc.
While the task of presenting with a group of people might feel daunting, especially if you identify as a lone wolf, group presentations can be a great learning experience and teach you how to better navigate the task of dealing with a multitude of people with a multitude of opinions and experiences.
By keeping in mind a few things, group presentations can be delivered just as efficiently as single-speaker presentations.
Is A Group Presentation For You?
To decide whether you should deliver a group presentation or not, you need to decide whether the pros of a group presentation outweigh the cons for you.
Group presentations are great because they decrease workload, increase efficiency, improve the quantity and quality of ideas, and also provide you with experience to work in a group setting.
However, there are a few fall-backs to group presentation as well.
Sometimes, a few group members might not work as hard as the other ones, thus increasing the workload on the other members. Also, group members might have different ideas and opinions, which can cause clashes within the group. Coordinating between the group members might be a problem. And if you’re a shy person, you might find it difficult to speak out and voice your opinion in front of other group members.
So, there is no single answer to whether you should do a group presentation or not. Weigh in the pros and cons of doing one before making your decision.
Tips For Delivering A Group Presentation: The Preparation Stage
1. Decide On The Purpose Of Your Presentation
First and foremost, you must determine what is the purpose of your presentation. It might seem like a redundant step, but trust me: it’s not. You’ll be surprised by how different people perceive and understand the same topic.
So, say you’re delivering a research paper on the topic “The Effect Of The Coronavirus Pandemic On Street Animals”, sit down together and ask your group members what each individual person thinks the topic is about and the points they feel we need to include in it.
If possible, one member can jot down all the points that the other speakers make, and once all the members are done talking, you can come to a consensus about what to and what not to include in the presentation.
2. Choose A Presentation Moderator
In the simplest terms, the presentation moderator is the designated “leader” of a group. That is, they’re the one responsible for the effective functioning of the group, and to make sure that the group achieves their shared purpose i.e giving the presentation.
They sort out any potential conflicts in the group, help out other members when they ask for guidance, and also have the final say on important decisions that the group makes. The best and the simplest way to select the presentation moderator is by vote. This will ensure that every member has a say, and avoid any potential conflicts in the future.
3. Divide The Work Fairly
The next step is to divide the work. The best way to do this is to break your presentation into equal parts, and then to assign them to group members. While doing so, you can keep in mind individuals’ preferences, experience, and expertise. For example, if there are three people, you can divide your presentation into three sections: the beginning, the middle, and the end.
Then you can ask which member would feel more comfortable with a particular section, and assign the sections accordingly. In case of any overlap, the individual members can be asked to decide themselves who’s the better fit for the part. Alternatively, if the situation doesn’t seem to resolve, the presentation moderator can step in and assign parts randomly to the members; the members can do this themselves, too.
4 . Do A Member Analysis
To know the individual strengths and weaknesses of group members, it’s important to carry out a member analysis. Not everyone feels comfortable in front of a crowd. Or, someone could be great at building presentations, but not so good with speaking into a mic. On the contrary, a member might be an excellent orator but terrible with technology.
So, in order to efficiently divide the work and to have a seamless presentation, carry out a member analysis beforehand.
5. Individual And Group Practice Are Equally Important
Individual practice is important as it helps you prepare the presentation in solitude, as you would if you were the only speaker. Practicing alone is generally more comfortable, as you do not have to worry about other people watching or judging you.
It also allows you to prepare at your own convenience and time, while for group practice you’ll have to adjust to when it’s convenient for the other members to practice, as well.
Besides, the individual practice also saves the group’s time as each member can simultaneously but separately prep their own part, while group practice sessions are often longer as the other members generally have to pay attention to the speaking member instead of their own bit.
However, it’s essential to do group practice at least three to four times before delivering your presentation. This is important not just for the smooth delivery of the presentation, but also for the group members to grow comfortable with each other.
Group practice sessions also help you time out the total duration of the presentation, have smooth transitions between speakers, avoid repetitions, and also sort out any potential hiccups or fallbacks in the presentation.
6. Perfect The Transitions
A common fallback of group presentations is having awkward transitions between members. Not only will this be an unpleasant experience for the audience, but it might also make you waste precious time.
So, make sure you practice and perfect the transitions before the big day. It doesn’t have to be too long–even a single line will do. What matters is how well you execute it.
7. Bond With The Group Members
Bonding with the group is a great way to enhance the overall presentation experience; both, for yourself as well as the audience. This is because a better bond between the group members will make for the smoother functioning of the group, reduce potential conflicts, make decisions quickly and more easily, and also make the presentation fun!
The audience will also be able to sense, maybe even witness, this camaraderie between the members. They will thus have a better viewing experience.
There are many ways to improve the bonding between group members. Before the presentation, you could go out for dinner, a movie, or even meet up at one location–like somebody’s house–to get to know each other better. Group calls are another option. You could also play an ice-breaker if you’re up for some fun games!
8. Watch Other Group Presentations Together
This is another great way of bonding with the team and also improving your presentation skills as you do so. By listening to other group presentations, you will be able to glean a better idea of how you can better strategize your own presentation. As you watch the presentation, make note of things like the time division, the way the topics are divided, the transition between speakers, etc.
A few presentations you could watch are:
Delivering A Successful Team Presentation
Takeaway: This is a great video to learn how to deliver a great group presentation. As you watch the video, make note of all the different tips that each speaker gives, and also how they incorporate them in their own presentation, which goes on simulatenously with the tips.
Sample Group Presentation: Non-Verbal Communication
Takeaway: This is another great video that depicts how you can deliver a presentation with a group. Notice how the topics are divided, the transition between different speakers, and also the use of visuals in the presentation.
AthleteTranx Team Presentation- 2012 Business Plan Competition
Takeaway: Another great example of a group presentation that you can watch with your own group. In this video, keep a lookout for how the different speakers smoothly transition, their body language, and the way the presentation itself is organized to make it an amazing audience experience.
Tips For Delivering A Group Presentation: The Presentation Stage
1.Introduce All Members
A good idea to keep in mind while delivering a group presentation is to introduce all members at the onset of the presentation. This will familiarize the audience with them, and also work to ease the member’s nerves.
Besides, an introduction will make the members feel more included, and if done correctly, can also give a more shy member a confidence boost. The simplest way of introducing members is to have the person beginning the speech do it. Alternatively, the presentation moderator could do it.
Need some tips on how to introduce people? Check out our article on How To Introduce A Speaker In Any Setting (And Amaze Your Audience).
2. Coordinate Your Dressing
What better way to make people believe that you’re a team than dressing up as one?
Coordinated dressing not only makes the group stand out from the audience, but it can also make the group members feel more like one team.
A general rule of thumb is to dress one level more formally than your audience. Don’t wear your casual clothes: remember that it’s a formal event and your clothing must reflect that. Also, keep in mind individual preferences and beliefs while choosing the clothing.
This is important as if a person is uncomfortably dressed, it can have a negative impact on their performance, which will eventually be detrimental to the group performance.
Confused about what to wear on the presentation day? Check out our article on Guide: Colors To Wear During A Presentation.
3. Make Sure To Incorporate Visual & Audio Aids
Visual elements like photographs, videos, graphs, etc. Are a must in all presentations, group or otherwise. This is because visual aids help the audience better understand the topic, besides making the presentation a better experience overall. Same goes with audio elements, which include things like audio clips, music, background sounds etc.
So, if you wish to have your audience’s attention, make sure to incorporate tons of visual and audio elements in your presentation. You could also divide the kind of visual elements you use between different members: for example, one person could show a short documentary to expand on their point, and the other could make use of memes and animation to add a dose of fun to their part.
4. Pay Attention To What Others Are Saying
Another thing to keep in mind while delivering your speech is to pay attention to what the other speakers are saying. While it might be tempting to tune out others and use the extra time to rehearse your own presentation, it’s not a good idea to do so.
Remember that the audience can see each speaker on the stage. If you don’t look interested, then why should they pay attention? Besides, your lack of attention can make the speaker feel bad: if their own team members aren’t listening to them speaking, does that mean they’re doing a bad job? So, make sure to keep your eyes and ears on your teammate as they deliver their speech.
5. Remember All Speech Parts By Heart
This is a great way to ensure that you have a seamless presentation. One of the primary benefits of having a team to work with is knowing that you can turn to them for help if something goes wrong.
So, it’s important to not just practice and work together but to also be well-versed in what other group members are going to be saying. This will make it easier for you to cue or help someone if they forget their part. Also, if there’s an emergency or if a member is not able to make it to the speech, the other members can easily take their place.
6. Work Together For A Question And Answer Session
Q & A sessions are a common element in most presentations. They might seem daunting to an individual speaker, however, a group setting makes the session much easier. This is because an individual speaker doesn’t have to know everything about the topic.
The presentation moderator can simply refer to the speaker who is the most well-versed about the topic or is best able to answer the question from the group, and they can answer it.
Creative Ideas To Make Use Of Multiple Presenters!
There are many ways by which you can use the fact that there’s not just one single presentator but many to your advantage. A few of them are:
1. Add A Dose Of Fun With Skits!
Adding a dose of creativity to your presentation will greatly enhance its appeal to the audience, and make it more likely that they will remember your presentation in the future!
One way of doing this is by having a short skirt in the opening. This is another great way of introducing the members, and of warming up the audience to them.
A fun skit can not only expand on the topic you’re about to present but will also elevate the audience’s mood, which will improve their attention span as well as their opinion of you! What else could you ask for?
2. Make Them Engage With Cosplay!
Cosplay is another great way of making your presentation stand apart! This can make the presentation more interactive for the audience, as well, and earn you that sought-after dose of chuckling.
It’s not necessary to buy the most expensive costumes or be perfect in your cosplay, either. You can pick an outfit that’s easy to drape over your other outfit, and pick props that are easy to carry as well as versatile so that you can use them in other parts of your presentation as well.
3. Write & Sing A Song Together!
Listen, you don’t have to be a professional singer or composer to do this. You’re not trying to sell a studio album. All you need is a little dose of creativity and some brainstorming, and you can write a song that helps you explain a component of your speech better.
You could even summarize the entire topic in that song, and sing it in the end as a sort of post-credits scene (thank you, Marvel). Alternatively, the song doesn’t necessarily have to explain your speech, but can simply be a surprise element after you’re done with the main part of your speech!
4. Record A Short Film!
If you don’t want to have a live skit, another creative way to add fun to your skit is by recording a short film beforehand and playing it during your presentation. The film doesn’t have to be very long–even a few minutes work.
What matters is the content of the film, and how well-made it is. If not all members wish to act or record themselves, the ones that are not up for it can do the editing and compilation, or even write the script! After all, it’s not just actors that make a film successful: a strong director and writer are just as important!
5. Have A Continuous Story
Another great way to make the presentation seem more connected and seamless is by incorporating a continuous story. You can pick a story–or even make one up–related to your topic and break it up in sections.
Then, assign a section to each speaker. This will not only make the presentation more intriguing but if done right will also hook your audience’s attention and make them anticipate what comes next. Awesome, right?
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q. how do i begin a group presentation.
To begin a group presentation, have the moderator or any other group member introduce all other members and the topic that they’ll be speaking on. This might seem like a redundancy, however it is anything but useless.
This gives the chance to the audience to become familiar with the speakers, which is necessary if you want them to grow comfortable with you. Also, prior introduction of members saves the audience’s time, as each speaker will not have to re-introduce themself before driving into their topic.
If each member wishes to individually introduce themselves, then that can be done too. However, make sure that you’ve practiced transitioning between members smoothly, so as to avoid making the switch look awkward.
Next, share a brief summary of what you’re going to be talking about. Like the introduction, you could even split the summary among yourselves, with each speaker describing briefly what they’re going to be talking about. Tell the audience why it’s relevant, and how you’re planning to go about giving the speech. Incorporating attention-grabbing statements is another good idea.
This could be a sneak peek into what’s going to be coming in your presentation, or simply a relevant statement, fact or statistic. Make sure the introduction doesn’t last too long, as you want to keep the audience fresh and primed for the main content of your speech.
For some awesome opening lines, check out our article on 15 Powerful Speech Opening Lines (And How To Create Your Own).
Q. HOW DO I TRANSITION BETWEEN DIFFERENT SPEAKERS?
As mentioned before, having a smooth transition between speakers in the group is imperative to provide the audience with a seamless experience. The abrupt way of doing this would be to simply have the first speaker stop and for the other speaker to begin speaking.
However, a better way to transition would be by using transitional phrases. Pass the baton to the next speaker by introducing them. You could do this by saying something like, “To talk about the next topic we have…” Or something like, “Now I would like to invite…”
After verbally introducing them, it’s also a good idea to motion towards or look towards the new speaker. Also, if you’re the next speaker, it’s always good manners to thank the previous one.
Transitioning is one place where many presentations go wrong. Practicing the transition might seem redundant, but it’s anything but that. In fact, it’s as necessary as the practice of the other elements of your speech. Also, make sure to incorporate both, verbal and non-verbal cues while moving to the next speaker. That is, don’t just say that ‘A’ is going to be speaking now and then walk away.
Make eye contact with the speaker, motion for them towards the podium, or smile at them. That is, both speakers should acknowledge the presence of each other.
Make sure to practice this beforehand too. If you want, you could also have the moderator do the transitioning and introduce all speakers. However, make sure that your transitions are brief, as you don’t want to take up too much time from the main presentation.
Q. HOW DO I END A GROUP PRESENTATION?
For the ending of the presentation, have the moderator or any other group member step forward again. They can provide a quick summary of the presentation, before thanking the audience and asking them if they have any questions.
The moderator doesn’t have to answer all the questions by themselves: the members can pitch in to answer the question that relates to their individual part. If there’s another group presenting after you, the moderator can conclude by verbally introducing them or saying that the next group will take over now.
During the end, you could have all the presenters on the stage together, as this will provide a united front to your audience. If you don’t wish to finish the presentation with a Q & A, you could also end it by a call to action.
Or, you could loop back and make a reference to the opening of your presentation, or the main part of your speech. If you’d set up a question at the beginning, now would be a good time to answer it. This will increase the impact of your speech.
Make sure that the closing words aren’t vague. The audience should know it’s the end of the presentation, and not like you’re keeping them hanging for something more. Make sure to thank and acknowledge your audience, and any other speakers or dignitaries present. Lastly, just like the opening and the transitioning, practice the ending before you step onto the stage!
Want some inspiration for closing lines? Check out our article on 15 Powerful Speech Ending Lines (And Tips To Create Your Own).
Q. HOW DO I INTRODUCE THE NEXT SPEAKER IN A GROUP PRESENTATION?
There are many ways by which you can introduce the next speaker in the presentation. For starters, you could wrap up your presentation by simply summarizing what you said (make sure it’s a brief summary) and then saying the other speaker will take over from this point.
Or, you could finish with your topic and then give a brief introduction of the next speaker and what they’re going to be talking about. The introduction can be simply the name of the speaker, or you could also provide a brief description of them and their achievements if any.
To lighten the mood, you could even add a fun fact about the speaker in your introduction–this is, of course, provided that you’re both comfortable with it. You could also ask for a round of applause to welcome them onto the stage.
However you choose to approach the transition, make sure that your introduction is short, and not more than two minutes at the maximum. Remember that it’s the next speaker’s turn to speak–not yours. If you’re the incoming speaker, make sure to thank the speaker who introduced you. You could also respond to their description or fun fact about you. A smile doesn’t hurt, either!
To sum up, while group presentations might seem daunting at first, if planned and executed properly, they don’t have to be difficult at all! On the contrary, they can make the presentation a more seamless and fun experience overall. By doing thorough preparation in advance, dividing the work properly, as well as staying vigilant and supportive during the presentation, you can execute your next group presentation as easily as an individual project!
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Home Blog Presentation Ideas Presenting a Team to an Audience
Presenting a Team to an Audience
Introducing the involved team to the audience is vital in academic or business presentation contexts. It boosts the authority over the topic to discuss. In this article, we will discuss the importance of presenting a team to an audience. How to introduce your team members, explain their role within the organization, and tips + examples to succeed.
Table of Contents
What is to present a team to an audience?
Requirements for presenting a team to an audience, how do presentation templates help us introduce the team with style, case studies for presenting a team to an audience, tips for presenting a team to an audience.
As commonly seen in business presentations that involve more than one speaker, the team is introduced to the audience before covering the topic of the meeting. This implies stating each member’s role for the team, the area they worked on, the expertise they bring to the team, and why they joined the project.
For the audience, a well-crafted team presentation by an organization allows them to appreciate the different perspectives that led to the result. Acknowledging which member took a significant role in what area will enable them to tailor the questions that may arise.
From a trustworthiness point of view, a formal introduction of the team helps build the organization’s reputation. This is particularly crucial in academic presentations , as the team leader conducts the presentation, and team members involved in the research may not even be present. The slide presenting the team gives context about each team member’s contribution, role, and current position in the research team.
Presenting a team to an audience also serves as a motivational factor for the team itself. It boosts confidence and promotes respect among the coworkers since they receive equal credit for their contribution. Presenters could refer to both the professional and soft skills of the team members if they had significance in the project outcome to showcase.
Even if we can label this stage as something “quick to complete,” truthfully, presenting a team to an audience requires a clear vision of the team structure.
The team leader is the person in charge of this process since their work was to assign the tasks to complete each step of the project due to be presented. Therefore, the team leader must keep the team’s organogram in mind.
Taking notes during each stage helps to remember which person was involved in which particular area, especially for last-minute changes. During the team presentation, the org chart template must reflect the hierarchy within the team, roles, and responsibilities .
A background check to introduce each team member is recommended. This helps reduce unnecessary information for the presentation. Some examples are:
- If we talk about a business scenario, briefly expose each team member’s expertise in the niche you’re about to present. This could be either work experience or an academic degree on the topic.
- For research presentations, such as conferences given in scientific congresses, next to each name, add the maximum degree each person achieved. Be sure to include the specific area of research the person is working on right now and mention if they are part of another collaboration team. That last point is essential for young researchers slowly building their academic reputation and seeking to network with other professionals in their area.
Another important aspect is to consider the format in which the team presentation will be made: if live, with the entire team on board, or if the team leader performs the speech and introduces them via photos on a slide. Again, this question entails studying the audience and the kind of event in the first place.
Presentations involving the presence of the entire team usually happen for entrepreneurism , where the team involved in the development of a product or service is introduced to the audience of potential investors . In this case, we talk about teams with 20 members or less.
In big tech conferences, the team leader introduces the team, making it optional for them to attend the event. Large corporations opt for videos that brief about the company’s structure, sometimes followed by an organogram presenting the department directors or people strictly involved in the project, plus their role.
Academic conference presentations include a slide that briefs the team members, their roles, and expertise. A friendly practice is adding a photo of the whole team on the following slide since that helps boost the presence of the organization they work.
One common issue speakers face in this kind of presentation is lacking graphic design skills. Therefore, the resulting slides may look dull, unattractive, or filled with pointless data. This is where presentation templates come to give a helping hand.
The first thing to consider with PowerPoint or Google Slides templates is that you don’t require a broad knowledge of either software or graphic design. The pre-made designs are fully editable, crafted by professionals who seek to help users power up their presentations for quality results. Hence, you don’t need to worry about matching color schemes, font pairing, or how much text to include in the slide – those decisions were pre-made for you.
Secondly, these presentation slides help us save countless hours, as, for instance, an organogram would take to build line by line. You simply drag the photos required into the presentation, insert the text in the placeholder areas, and that’s it.
To further understand this topic, we will introduce three potential scenarios for presenting your team in front of an audience.
Case #1 – Presenting a team at a tech conference for a product release
A medium-sized company – whose trajectory in the mobile phone industry goes back to 2020 – is currently attending a trade show similar to CES . They aim to present themselves as manufacturers of docking stations for phones and tablets with wireless charge technology.
Since their company’s reputation is still developing, this is their most significant trade show attendance. Therefore, it’s vital to present the team backing up the company, to ensure trustworthiness. At the same time, they only count with a limited space area at the exhibition stand.
The HR and Marketing teams envision a strategy that attends to the executives’ demands for presenting the team as innovative while not missing the chance to promote the product in the brief attention span they can get.
The following example shows how to introduce the team; four pillars of innovation with a track record background.
The slide shows experience based on previous company roles. It reinforces the idea that the innovation of the company is driven by people breed in the most important mobile and engineering companies in the world.
Since consumers go around the stands, inquiring about details on products that pick their interest, the stand is designed following these premises:
- A section to show actual product samples that consumers can test to check their quality and performance.
- A big display of the team slide. This will drive the attention of industry resellers.
- A big screen showing a reel that explains in 40 seconds what the product does + 20 seconds about what the company is, its values, and its team.
- Make digital flyers available for the customers; briefing about the product, the company’s history, and testimonials from selected workers with broad expertise in the subject.
By using these four strategies, the company ensures three key points. First, they grab the consumer’s attention by showing an actual product they can try. Secondly, they target people passing by, with the 1-minute reel, which can be seen from afar and a panel of team members well known in the mobile and engineering fields. Finally, the flyer retains the customer’s interest by presenting not just the product but information about the company, contact data, and the names of the people involved in this product release. Such information (company’s website/social media or team members’ names) can be researched later by consumers, helping bring authority and trust to the brand.
Case #2 – Pharmaceutical conference in which a team presents their cutting-edge development
A well-respected team of researchers is attending a pharmaceutical conference. The poster session showcases their latest research paper about a new compound to treat insomnia without rebound effects. Fellow researchers look at what the poster exposes, the data that backs up the research, and the names of the scientists involved in this study.
At the time of delivering the presentation, the team leader for this research group opens the presentation with a slide listing the title for the research and the area group where their study takes place. Since the topic may be a bit controversial, the team leader opts to present the team first, as a couple of his coworkers in this project are respected neuroscientists that researched insomnia, with well-acknowledged articles on the topic.
By doing this team introduction at the beginning of the presentation instead of the usual practice of leaving the team slide to the end, the team leader ensures no spectator would label the research as silly material. The curriculums of the team members speak of their expertise on the subject, their trajectory as respected scientists, and their non-conventional approach to the discipline. The placing of a presenting a team slide is crucial for attracting the audience’s interest and backing up their authority on the subject.
Case #3 – A company meets their new SEO team
The marketing department of an e-commerce company is seeking to delegate the SEO efforts to a specialized team. Their current workload doesn’t allow the marketing members to dedicate the required time to SEO, and their lack of a proper strategy and skills, demotes them in search engine rankings against their competitors.
After a lengthy process, an the company built a team whose values align with the company’s strategy. The first meeting is about to take place between the marketing department and the SEO team. The marketing department only has a brief reference about the SEO team since the HR recruiters managed the entire process.
As an introductory meeting, the location picked is the meeting room for the company, which has a large table and a projector. Seating in front of each other, both teams greet and proceed to continue with the agenda. The SEO team prepared a presentation that exposes their history and expertise, the team members that will take part in this project, under which roles, and KPIs gathered after their initial analysis of the data provided by the company.
The team leader for the SEO crew proceeds to explain their history, previous experiences, and success stories in similar projects. The presenting the team slide features each team member participating. It showcases pictures, names and role; this helps the marketing team to identify each member quickly.
One by one, each of the 10 members of the SEO crew presents themselves, referencing their role in the project and the essential skills that will contribute to this company’s growth. They also explain that they would be using a state-of-the-art SEO management platform to conduct their research, analyze data, and track progress, to complete the tasks efficiently.
Thanks to the detailed presentation, the marketing managers now understand who is in charge of which section and whom to contact for the project’s different parts. The rest of the team members in the marketing department can see similarities and affinities for work areas, which in turn contribute to building a healthy relationship with their new coworkers.
This section will summarize some tips for making a great team presentation.
Tip #1 – Setting the right tone with a presentation template
As mentioned above, presentation templates save countless hours in effort and thinking about design styles for our work. But truthfully, a properly designed presentation template has the impact of expressing our vision in a graphic format.
When selecting the presentation template to use, opt for one whose color range meets your company’s branding. Avoid overdoing transition effects since they can be overbearing for your audience.
The simpler, the better. Here are some suggestions for about us presentation templates you can check.
Tip #2 – Establish the key message
Presenting a team to an audience is also the perfect opportunity for leveraging why any customer should hire your team’s skills. Write your narrative around that idea, and be clear about which competitive edge your team can bring to the table. Give precise facts about past experience and success stories your crew helped to write for other consumers with similar needs.
Tip #3 – Be clear about roles
This is vital since it speaks about the professionalism of your team. A great team manager must keep in mind the roles of their crew, and the reason why they were assigned.
Although an organogram can help, it’s best to let the structure of the presentation be the primary asset. If a proper hierarchy is established, your team members can take turns introducing themselves when required according to the narrative constructed about the team’s experience.
Tip #4 – Make transition spaces work for you
Instead of prolonging awkward pauses between the introduction of each team member, make the presentation fluid by letting the next team member continue exposing a similar line of thought. For example, a team member can expose her expertise as a financial analyst in emerging markets, and then her coworker can take the lead by talking about his experience as a corporate investment manager.
Tip #5 – Let your team’s individual success help the narrative
In some situations, it can be ideal to talk about your team members’ previous expertise and why they landed with the current project. We are, after all, the consequence of our decisions and experience; therefore, mentioning key milestones in a team member’s career (if related to the topic) sets the ground for discussing certain approaches.
A “success” story is not always required; even a failed attempt can be seen – in academic research – as profitable since it brings a different perspective from textbook instructions.
Let your team individuals expose why their experience shaped the perspective in which they can see this upcoming project, and why they consider a creative thinking approach can be beneficial for business results or even mentoring others.
Selected Templates for Preparing Team Presentations
Check our range of products specifically selected to help you create the best introduction for your team.
1. Organizational Charts PowerPoint Template
A collection of 14 slides to create professional-styled organograms for your presentation. Take a look at the different styles and how they will match your presentation style. Fully editable in PowerPoint and Google Slides
Use This Template
2. Meet the Team PowerPoint Template Slides
A presentation template designed to introduce your team members with a photo, title, and a brief placeholder text. Clean, contemporary-styled, and easy to edit.
3. Team Introduction Template for PowerPoint
Modern and vibrant layout to present your team with style! This fully editable template adapts to your desired color theme in just seconds. Use the different slides to change between typical text introductions to showcase the most important skills your coworkers bring to the team.
4. Member Profile PowerPoint Template
Be as detailed as you desire in your team introductions, thanks to this Member Profile PowerPoint Template . This presentation is ideal for small teams; it allows the team leader to be specific about their team members’ skills and experience.
Features a bar chart design to indicate the skills capacity and a placeholder area for quotes or a brief written introduction by the person.
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How to Introduce Yourself in a Presentation
Last Updated: May 12, 2023 References
This article was co-authored by Patrick Muñoz . Patrick is an internationally recognized Voice & Speech Coach, focusing on public speaking, vocal power, accent and dialects, accent reduction, voiceover, acting and speech therapy. He has worked with clients such as Penelope Cruz, Eva Longoria, and Roselyn Sanchez. He was voted LA's Favorite Voice and Dialect Coach by BACKSTAGE, is the voice and speech coach for Disney and Turner Classic Movies, and is a member of Voice and Speech Trainers Association. There are 11 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 118,550 times.
Introducing yourself in a presentation is more than just saying your name. It’s an opportunity for you to share relevant details about yourself and connect with your audience. It also sets the tone for the rest of the talk. How you introduce yourself will influence how your audience receives the message you want to get across. Make your next introduction flawless by presenting the most engaging information about yourself. Be sure to prepare the introduction in advance and start with an attention-grabbing technique to connect to the audience.
Including Relevant Information in Your Introduction
- If you have an unusual or difficult to pronounce name, you may want to add a small remark to help your audience remember it. For example, you can say “My name is Jacob Misen, like ‘risen’ but with an M.”
- Try to make eye contact with parts of audience during your presentation as well.  X Research source
- If you are VP of Marketing at a large company, it can actually be much more effective to say something like “I have more than a decade of experience using Facebook marketing ads to target clients in the dance industry” rather than simply stating your job title.
- You can also specifically refer your audience to the handout or powerpoint for more information. For example, if you want to let them know that you have articles in many international newspapers but you don’t want to list them all out, simply say “I’ve written for a number of internationally recognized news organizations. You can find the full list on the first page of my handout.”
- For example, you could say “when I designed a website for Richard Branson last year …” to inform your audience that you have an impressive resume, without having to list it all for them in your introduction.
- Try concluding your introduction by mentioning a client or project you were working on that directly relates to the topic of your presentation. For example: “I’ve had the pleasure of working with NXP Semiconductors for the past three years. Just last week we encountered a problem with our logistical database...” and then lead into your presentation about a new software that will solve everyone’s logistical hiccups.
Grabbing Your Audience’s Attention Before Your Introduction
- If you don’t have music that can tie to your presentation, you can use a song with the theme of beginning. For example, if you are presenting at a sales meeting, play some soft jazz as participants enter. Then, when it’s time for you to start, play the Black Eyed Peas chorus of “Let’s Get it Started” to get your audience’s attention. You can then open with an energetic “Good morning!” or “Good Afternoon” as the music ends.
- Remember to choose music that’s appropriate to the event. An academic conference may not be the best place for pop music, for example (unless you are presenting research on pop music, of course).
- For example, if you are presenting on the design of a new user-friendly coffee machine, you may start your presentation by referencing Elon Musk: “Any product that needs a manual to work is broken,” and then go on to say “My name is Laurie Higgens, and my coffee machine doesn’t come with a manual.” Speak briefly about your relevant experience and qualifications, and then dive into presenting your design.
- Avoid cliche or overused motivational quotes the audience has probably already heard many times.
- Be sure to correctly cite your quote.
- For example, you might start with “According to Time magazine, Americans filled 4.3 billion prescriptions and doled out $374 billion on medicine in 2014.” Then, introduce yourself and your qualifications in medical research and transition into a presentation about how to prevent doctors from over prescribing medication to their patients.
- Remember to cite the source of your statistics. You will look more professional and reliable, and the audience will be able to follow up on the information if they wish.
- If you are giving a presentation about a new airport security-friendly travel bag, try starting your presentation with “How many of you have ever stood in line at airport security and nearly missed your flight?”
- You can also invite your audience to close their eyes and imagine something as you lead up to your question.
- Don’t be discouraged if your audience doesn’t raise their hands when you ask a question. Sometimes these questions seem more rhetorical to an audience, or maybe they are just shy. You can often see signs that they are still engaging with the question if people are nodding or smiling after you ask it.
- Try telling stories, showing pictures on a powerpoint, or using quotations.
- Being funny not only puts your audience at ease, but it also helps them remember you after the presentation.  X Research source
- For example, if you are making a presentation about a pizza delivery app, ask your audience members to tell their name, their favorite pizza topping, and a situation where they’ve had a particularly amazing or awful experience with food delivery.
Preparing Before Your Presentation
- When it’s time to present, it’s probably best to just write down a few notes or key words to remind you of what you want to say so you don’t just read off your note cards.
- Think about your overall intention as a speaker. Are you trying to educate, enlighten, or entertain the audience? Figure out the effect you want to have on the listener so your presentation is impactful.
- If you don’t have a friend to watch your presentation, record yourself on video and play it back later to refine your presentation skills. It can be uncomfortable to watch yourself on video, but it will help you nail your introduction. You can even record your whole presentation. Keep recording and re-recording until you are happy with it. Then you know the audience will be happy too.
- The best resource to learn about the local culture is the locals themselves. If you have a contact where you will be speaking, ask them about customs, dress code, and how humor is usually received. If you don’t know anyone personally, try searching in industry-specific online forums. Find YouTube videos of presentations given in the area that are relevant to your industry.
- Don’t spend too much time introducing yourself. Your introduction should be short and to the point so you can get on to your main presentation material. Depending on the length of your presentation, your introduction should be between 20 seconds and 2 minutes long. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
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- ↑ https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/eye_contact_tips_to_make_your_presentations_stronger
- ↑ https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/career-development/introduce-yourself-professionally
- ↑ https://www.washington.edu/doit/presentation-tips-0
- ↑ https://www.gvsu.edu/ours/oral-presentation-tips-30.htm
- ↑ https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2018/09/27/15-hacks-for-making-your-presentation-more-creative-and-engaging/
- ↑ https://www.hamilton.edu/academics/centers/oralcommunication/guides/how-to-engage-your-audience-and-keep-them-with-you
- ↑ https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/make-em-laugh-ten-tips-using-humor-presentations-judy-romano-mba?trk=portfolio_article-card_title
- ↑ https://www.ncsl.org/legislators-staff/legislative-staff/legislative-staff-coordinating-committee/tips-for-making-effective-powerpoint-presentations.aspx
- ↑ https://crln.acrl.org/index.php/crlnews/article/view/19102/22119
- ↑ https://www.forbes.com/sites/tjwalker/2011/06/07/should-i-rehearse-and-for-how-long-presentation-training/
About This Article
To introduce yourself at the start of your presentation, all you need to do is state your name and tell the audience any relevant experience or skills you have. For example, say something like, “My name is Jacob Misen, and I have over a decade of experience using Facebook marketing ads in the dance industry.” If you have a broad range of relevant experience, you can bullet point a few examples on your opening slide instead of reading them out. Once you’ve introduced yourself, smoothly transition into your presentation. For instance, you can mention a client or project you’ve recently worked on that relates to the topic of your presentation. For more tips, including how to practice your presentation, read on! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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