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Presentation Tips

To sell your new idea, your innovation, your bright new concept to others, you'll almost certainly be making some presentations, formal or informal. Here are some tips to help you do your best ...

Tips for preparing material ...
1. Think in smaller units – viewers and listeners of podcasts expect short segments, so we will divide your podcast into brief segments (between 2 – 8 minutes, or so). If possible, try to divide your material into discrete time segments (again, 2-8 minutes in duration, or so).
2. If appropriate, begin with an engaging hook (anecdote that drives the topic, statistic, quotation, question); if not appropriate for engaging hook, at least provide a basic overview of general topics of session.
3. If appropriate, discuss your personal reason for delivering the topics. Controlled and targeted personal anecdotes are helpful to drive the lesson home.
4. Early in your talk, provide a list of outcomes you want students to receive – address what they will get out of it.
5. Try to provide details for key points rather than stay on a surface level, with application and examples, as appropriate.
6. Mistakes and failures are interesting, so if appropriate discuss problems, mistakes, solutions, and lessons learned.
7. As you end, provide a summary of information, with review of lessons learned and possible resources: books, people, organizations.
8. As you end, if possible, return to your opening with insight based on the topics presented.

Strategies for video filming ...
1. If possible, wear neat, classic clothes in darker shades. More classic attire will ensure that the clip does not date as quickly, and darker shades will give more of a sense of authority. Generally, it is best to avoid wearing red or white, which tend not to show up as well on video. If possible, try to avoid clothes with intricate patterns or tightly placed stripes. These are UA podcasts, so the UA blue and red is not a bad choice.
2. Avoid making extraneous noise -- dangly jewelry that jingles, coins in pockets, cellphones not turned off, that sort of thing.
3. You’ll be wearing a microphone, so be prepared to have a mic clipped to lapel or shirt collar.
4. Speak to the classroom audience and don’t worry about looking at the camera.
5. Don’t feel the need to hurry or talk fast – take your time.
6. Remember that theatrical pauses and thinking pauses add an element of power to the following utterance.
7. Please repeat questions before answering them.
8. Speak in personal, anecdotal terms. Use analogies to illustrate your point. Don’t be afraid to tell stories that drive home the lesson.
9. Be energetic
10. Smile

Strategies for spoken word, both audio and video ...
1. For clarity’s sake, use lists (3 lessons, 5 items of importance, 4 key elements, etc).
2. Use marking words and numbered bullets (first, next, third, most important, another key point is, etc).
3. Ask rhetorical questions and invoke third person “you.”
4. Be repetitive – repeat words, use synonyms, repeat sentence same structure.
5. Consider developing a written script for rehearsal purposes.
6. For audio podcast, reading from a written script is most beneficial.
7. For video podcast, it’s best not to memorize – if possible, extemporaneous speaking is most relaxed and video-friendly.
8. Practice reading the script out loud – time each segment (generally, one single spaced typed page is approximately three minutes of recorded audio).
9. Remember that microphones are sensitive – we can edit later, but the mic will pick up all utterances and sounds.

Tips for slides ...
1. Appropriate colors (dark writing on light background, or light on dark)
2. Clean fonts -- sans serif type of fonts are easiest on the eye (Calibri, Arial, Verdana)
3. Few words on each slides
4. Images to carry the idea
5. First and last name of speaker, with professional affiliation
6. Clear charts and graphs
7. Branded with logo of your choice (if possible)
8. Topic tracker (if possible)

[Thank you, Randy Accetta]