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What It Takes to Give a Great Presentation

  • Carmine Gallo

professional development presentation skills

Five tips to set yourself apart.

Never underestimate the power of great communication. It can help you land the job of your dreams, attract investors to back your idea, or elevate your stature within your organization. But while there are plenty of good speakers in the world, you can set yourself apart out by being the person who can deliver something great over and over. Here are a few tips for business professionals who want to move from being good speakers to great ones: be concise (the fewer words, the better); never use bullet points (photos and images paired together are more memorable); don’t underestimate the power of your voice (raise and lower it for emphasis); give your audience something extra (unexpected moments will grab their attention); rehearse (the best speakers are the best because they practice — a lot).

I was sitting across the table from a Silicon Valley CEO who had pioneered a technology that touches many of our lives — the flash memory that stores data on smartphones, digital cameras, and computers. He was a frequent guest on CNBC and had been delivering business presentations for at least 20 years before we met. And yet, the CEO wanted to sharpen his public speaking skills.

professional development presentation skills

  • Carmine Gallo is a Harvard University instructor, keynote speaker, and author of 10 books translated into 40 languages. Gallo is the author of The Bezos Blueprint: Communication Secrets of the World’s Greatest Salesman  (St. Martin’s Press).

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6 presentation skills and how to improve them


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What are presentation skills?

The importance of presentation skills, 6 presentation skills examples, how to improve presentation skills.

Tips for dealing with presentation anxiety

Learn how to captivate an audience with ease

Capturing an audience’s attention takes practice. 

Over time, great presenters learn how to organize their speeches and captivate an audience from start to finish. They spark curiosity, know how to read a room , and understand what their audience needs to walk away feeling like they learned something valuable.

Regardless of your profession, you most likely use presentation skills on a monthly or even weekly basis. Maybe you lead brainstorming sessions or host client calls. 

Developing effective presentation skills makes it easier to contribute ideas with confidence and show others you’re someone to trust. Although speaking in front of a crowd sometimes brings nerves and anxiety , it also sparks new opportunities.

Presentation skills are the qualities and abilities you need to communicate ideas effectively and deliver a compelling speech. They influence how you structure a presentation and how an audience receives it. Understanding body language , creating impactful visual aids, and projecting your voice all fall under this umbrella.

A great presentation depends on more than what you say. It’s about how you say it. Storytelling , stage presence, and voice projection all shape how well you express your ideas and connect with the audience. These skills do take practice, but they’re worth developing — especially if public speaking makes you nervous. 

Engaging a crowd isn’t easy. You may feel anxious to step in front of an audience and have all eyes and ears on you.

But feeling that anxiety doesn’t mean your ideas aren’t worth sharing. Whether you’re giving an inspiring speech or delivering a monthly recap at work, your audience is there to listen to you. Harness that nervous energy and turn it into progress.

Strong presentation skills make it easier to convey your thoughts to audiences of all sizes. They can help you tell a compelling story, convince people of a pitch , or teach a group something entirely new to them. And when it comes to the workplace, the strength of your presentation skills could play a part in getting a promotion or contributing to a new initiative.

To fully understand the impact these skills have on creating a successful presentation, it’s helpful to look at each one individually. Here are six valuable skills you can develop:

1. Active listening

Active listening is an excellent communication skill for any professional to hone. When you have strong active listening skills, you can listen to others effectively and observe their nonverbal cues . This helps you assess whether or not your audience members are engaged in and understand what you’re sharing. 

Great public speakers use active listening to assess the audience’s reactions and adjust their speech if they find it lacks impact. Signs like slouching, negative facial expressions, and roaming eye contact are all signs to watch out for when giving a presentation.

2. Body language

If you’re researching presentation skills, chances are you’ve already watched a few notable speeches like TED Talks or industry seminars. And one thing you probably noticed is that speakers can capture attention with their body language. 

A mixture of eye contact, hand gestures , and purposeful pacing makes a presentation more interesting and engaging. If you stand in one spot and don’t move your body, the audience might zone out.


3. Stage presence

A great stage presence looks different for everyone. A comedian might aim for more movement and excitement, and a conference speaker might focus their energy on the content of their speech. Although neither is better than the other, both understand their strengths and their audience’s needs. 

Developing a stage presence involves finding your own unique communication style . Lean into your strengths, whether that’s adding an injection of humor or asking questions to make it interactive . To give a great presentation, you might even incorporate relevant props or presentation slides.

4. Storytelling

According to Forbes, audiences typically pay attention for about 10 minutes before tuning out . But you can lengthen their attention span by offering a presentation that interests them for longer. Include a narrative they’ll want to listen to, and tell a story as you go along. 

Shaping your content to follow a clear narrative can spark your audience’s curiosity and entice them to pay careful attention. You can use anecdotes from your personal or professional life that take your audience along through relevant moments. If you’re pitching a product, you can start with a problem and lead your audience through the stages of how your product provides a solution.

5. Voice projection

Although this skill may be obvious, you need your audience to hear what you’re saying. This can be challenging if you’re naturally soft-spoken and struggle to project your voice.

Remember to straighten your posture and take deep breaths before speaking, which will help you speak louder and fill the room. If you’re talking into a microphone or participating in a virtual meeting, you can use your regular conversational voice, but you still want to sound confident and self-assured with a strong tone.

If you’re unsure whether everyone can hear you, you can always ask the audience at the beginning of your speech and wait for confirmation. That way, they won’t have to potentially interrupt you later.

Ensuring everyone can hear you also includes your speed and annunciation. It’s easy to speak quickly when nervous, but try to slow down and pronounce every word. Mumbling can make your presentation difficult to understand and pay attention to.


6. Verbal communication 

Although verbal communication involves your projection and tone, it also covers the language and pacing you use to get your point across. This includes where you choose to place pauses in your speech or the tone you use to emphasize important ideas.

If you’re giving a presentation on collaboration in the workplace , you might start your speech by saying, “There’s something every workplace needs to succeed: teamwork.” By placing emphasis on the word “ teamwork ,” you give your audience a hint on what ideas will follow.

To further connect with your audience through diction, pay careful attention to who you’re speaking to. The way you talk to your colleagues might be different from how you speak to a group of superiors, even if you’re discussing the same subject. You might use more humor and a conversational tone for the former and more serious, formal diction for the latter.

Everyone has strengths and weaknesses when it comes to presenting. Maybe you’re confident in your use of body language, but your voice projection needs work. Maybe you’re a great storyteller in small group settings, but need to work on your stage presence in front of larger crowds. 

The first step to improving presentation skills is pinpointing your gaps and determining which qualities to build upon first. Here are four tips for enhancing your presentation skills:

1. Build self-confidence

Confident people know how to speak with authority and share their ideas. Although feeling good about your presentation skills is easier said than done, building confidence is key to helping your audience believe in what you’re saying. Try practicing positive self-talk and continuously researching your topic's ins and outs.

If you don’t feel confident on the inside, fake it until you make it. Stand up straight, project your voice, and try your best to appear engaged and excited. Chances are, the audience doesn’t know you’re unsure of your skills — and they don’t need to.

Another tip is to lean into your slideshow, if you’re using one. Create something colorful and interesting so the audience’s eyes fall there instead of on you. And when you feel proud of your slideshow, you’ll be more eager to share it with others, bringing more energy to your presentation.

2. Watch other presentations

Developing the soft skills necessary for a good presentation can be challenging without seeing them in action. Watch as many as possible to become more familiar with public speaking skills and what makes a great presentation. You could attend events with keynote speakers or view past speeches on similar topics online.

Take a close look at how those presenters use verbal communication and body language to engage their audiences. Grab a notebook and jot down what you enjoyed and your main takeaways. Try to recall the techniques they used to emphasize their main points, whether they used pauses effectively, had interesting visual aids, or told a fascinating story.


3. Get in front of a crowd

You don’t need a large auditorium to practice public speaking. There are dozens of other ways to feel confident and develop good presentation skills.

If you’re a natural comedian, consider joining a small stand-up comedy club. If you’re an avid writer, participate in a public poetry reading. Even music and acting can help you feel more comfortable in front of a crowd.

If you’d rather keep it professional, you can still work on your presentation skills in the office. Challenge yourself to participate at least once in every team meeting, or plan and present a project to become more comfortable vocalizing your ideas. You could also speak to your manager about opportunities that flex your public speaking abilities.

4. Overcome fear

Many people experience feelings of fear before presenting in front of an audience, whether those feelings appear as a few butterflies or more severe anxiety. Try grounding yourself to shift your focus to the present moment. If you’re stuck dwelling on previous experiences that didn’t go well, use those mistakes as learning experiences and focus on what you can improve to do better in the future.

Tips for dealing with presentation anxiety 

It’s normal to feel nervous when sharing your ideas. In fact, according to a report from the Journal of Graduate Medical Education, public speaking anxiety is prevalent in 15–30% of the general population .

Even though having a fear of public speaking is common, it doesn’t make it easier. You might feel overwhelmed, become stiff, and forget what you were going to say. But although the moment might scare you, there are ways to overcome the fear and put mind over matter.

Use these tactics to reduce your stress when you have to make a presentation:

1. Practice breathing techniques

If you experience anxiety often, you’re probably familiar with breathing techniques for stress relief . Incorporating these exercises into your daily routine can help you stop worrying and regulate anxious feelings. 

Before a big presentation, take a moment alone to practice breathing techniques, ground yourself, and reduce tension. It’s also a good idea to take breaths throughout the presentation to speak slower and calm yourself down .

2. Get organized

The more organized you are, the more prepared you’ll feel. Carefully outline all of the critical information you want to use in your presentation, including your main talking points and visual aids, so you don’t forget anything. Use bullet points and visuals on each slide to remind you of what you want to talk about, and create handheld notes to help you stay on track.

3. Embrace moments of silence

It’s okay to lose your train of thought. It happens to even the most experienced public speakers once in a while. If your mind goes blank, don’t panic. Take a moment to breathe, gather your thoughts, and refer to your notes to see where you left off. You can drink some water or make a quick joke to ease the silence or regain your footing. And it’s okay to say, “Give me a moment while I find my notes.” Chances are, people understand the position you’re in.


4. Practice makes progress

Before presenting, rehearse in front of friends and family members you trust. This gives you the chance to work out any weak spots in your speech and become comfortable communicating out loud. If you want to go the extra mile, ask your makeshift audience to ask a surprise question. This tests your on-the-spot thinking and will prove that you can keep cool when things come up.

Whether you’re new to public speaking or are a seasoned presenter, you’re bound to make a few slip-ups. It happens to everyone. The most important thing is that you try your best, brush things off, and work on improving your skills to do better in your next presentation.

Although your job may require a different level of public speaking than your favorite TED Talk , developing presentation skills is handy in any profession. You can use presentation skills in a wide range of tasks in the workplace, whether you’re sharing your ideas with colleagues, expressing concerns to higher-ups, or pitching strategies to potential clients.

Remember to use active listening to read the room and engage your audience with an interesting narrative. Don’t forget to step outside your comfort zone once in a while and put your skills to practice in front of a crowd. After facing your fears, you’ll feel confident enough to put presentation skills on your resume.

If you’re trying to build your skills and become a better employee overall, try a communications coach with BetterUp. 

Elevate your communication skills

Unlock the power of clear and persuasive communication. Our coaches can guide you to build strong relationships and succeed in both personal and professional life.

Elizabeth Perry, ACC

Elizabeth Perry is a Coach Community Manager at BetterUp. She uses strategic engagement strategies to cultivate a learning community across a global network of Coaches through in-person and virtual experiences, technology-enabled platforms, and strategic coaching industry partnerships. With over 3 years of coaching experience and a certification in transformative leadership and life coaching from Sofia University, Elizabeth leverages transpersonal psychology expertise to help coaches and clients gain awareness of their behavioral and thought patterns, discover their purpose and passions, and elevate their potential. She is a lifelong student of psychology, personal growth, and human potential as well as an ICF-certified ACC transpersonal life and leadership Coach.

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Mastering Presentation Skills: A Comprehensive Guide

Presentation skills are an essential aspect of professional development and personal growth. Learn to convey your ideas clearly and compellingly.

Key Takeaways:

  • Understanding the importance of effective presentation skills in professional and personal growth.
  • Learning how to utilize body language and visual aids to keep the audience engaged.
  • Strategies to overcome pre-presentation jitters and improve overall presentation performance.

Presentation skills are an essential aspect of professional development and personal growth. Whether you're addressing a small group or a large audience, the ability to convey your ideas clearly and compellingly can make a significant difference in your career. This comprehensive guide will delve into the most effective presentation skills, offering practical advice to help you improve your presentation skills and deliver successful presentations.

The Foundation of Good Presentation Skills

Good presentation skills are rooted in the ability to communicate effectively. This involves not only what you say but also how you say it. Your body language, voice modulation, and the clarity of your message all play a crucial role in delivering a good presentation. To master these skills, one must practice regularly and be open to feedback from other presenters and audience members.

Body Language: Your Silent Communicator

Your body language can speak volumes before you even utter a word. Appropriate gestures, facial expressions, and maintaining eye contact are crucial components of effective presentations. They help convey your message and keep the audience's attention. An experienced presenter knows that a positive enthusiasm and a confident stage presence can significantly impact the delivery of their presentation.

Visual Aids: Enhancing Your Message

Visual aids, such as Microsoft PowerPoint slides, charts, and videos, can greatly enhance your presentation by providing a visual context to your words. They should complement your speech, not overshadow it. Use bullet points to summarize information and high-quality images to illustrate points more vividly. Remember, the visual aids are there to support your presentation, not to be the main focus.

Overcoming Stage Fright

Stage fright, or pre-presentation jitters, is a common challenge for many presenters. Breathing techniques, such as taking deep breaths before stepping onto the presentation stage, can help calm your nerves. Arriving early to familiarize yourself with the environment and practicing your speech with note cards can also reduce anxiety. Remember, even TED Talk speakers feel nervous; what sets them apart is their ability to manage and channel that nervousness into a compelling presentation.

Engaging Your Audience

Keeping the audience engaged is one of the most important aspects of a successful presentation. This involves understanding the needs and interests of your target audience and tailoring your content accordingly. Use a personal story or a relatable example to make your points more relatable. Encourage questions and interactions to create a two-way dialogue and maintain audience interest throughout your talk.

The Role of Public Speaking in Presentation Skills

Public speaking is an integral part of presentation skills. It's about delivering your message with clarity and confidence. To improve your public speaking abilities, focus on articulating your ideas clearly and at a pace that is easy for the audience to follow. Practice your speech in front of a mirror or record yourself to evaluate your voice modulation and body language.

Leadership Skills and Presentation

Effective presentation skills are closely linked to leadership skills. A leader must be able to present their vision and ideas in a way that inspires and motivates their team. This requires a combination of self-confidence, clear communication, and the ability to connect with audience members on a personal level. By honing your presentation skills, you also enhance your leadership capabilities.

Pre-Presentation Preparation

Preparation is key to a killer presentation. This includes researching your topic thoroughly, organizing your ideas into a coherent structure, and rehearsing your delivery. Use note cards to remember key points, but avoid reading from them verbatim. The more prepared you are, the more confident you will feel when it's time to present.

Presentation Tools and Technology

Leveraging presentation tools and technology can take your presentation to the next level. Familiarize yourself with software like Microsoft PowerPoint or other presentation platforms to create visually appealing slides. However, ensure that technology enhances your presentation rather than becoming a distraction.

The Importance of Practice

Practice is essential to improve your presentation skills. Rehearse your presentation multiple times, ideally in the actual room where you will be presenting. Seek opportunities to present in front of others, such as a small group or even a mirror, to gain confidence and receive constructive feedback.

Crafting a Killer Presentation: The Art of Preparation

The significance of thorough research.

Before stepping onto the presentation stage, it's crucial to invest time in researching your topic. This not only ensures that you are well-versed in your subject matter but also boosts your self-confidence. A presenter who is confident in their knowledge can engage the audience more effectively. Harvard Business Review emphasizes the importance of understanding your target audience's needs and expectations. Tailoring your content to address these points makes your presentation more relevant and compelling. Remember, a well-researched presentation is a foundation upon which successful presentation skills are built.

Structuring Your Content for Maximum Impact

Once your research is complete, the next step is to structure your presentation in a way that flows logically and keeps the audience's attention. Start with an outline that includes an introduction, key points, and a conclusion. Use bullet points to distill complex ideas into digestible pieces of information. This structure helps you maintain focus while delivering your presentation and aids the audience in following your narrative. A clear structure is a hallmark of good presentation skills and is essential for a compelling presentation. Think of your outline as a roadmap that guides both you and your audience through the journey of your talk.

Enhancing Delivery Through Rehearsal Techniques

Enhancing delivery through rehearsal techniques is crucial for ensuring effective communication and presentation skills. By dedicating time to practice and refine delivery methods, individuals can significantly improve their ability to convey information clearly and confidently. Rehearsal allows speakers to familiarize themselves with the material, anticipate potential challenges, and adapt their delivery style to engage and captivate their audience effectively. Moreover, through repetition and feedback, speakers can fine-tune their delivery, refine their message, and enhance overall performance. Whether preparing for a presentation, speech, or any form of public communication, investing in rehearsal techniques is essential for achieving impactful delivery and maximizing audience engagement.

Mastering the Use of Presentation Tools and Technology

Presentation tools and technology are integral to delivering a successful presentation. With the advent of software like Microsoft PowerPoint, presenters can create visually appealing slides that support their message. The key is to use these tools to enhance, not overshadow, the content. For instance, incorporating bullet points for clarity, using high-quality images to illustrate points, and embedding videos for dynamic examples can make a presentation more engaging. However, it's crucial to ensure that the technology serves the presentation and not the other way around.

The vast majority of presentation tools offer features that can help maintain the audience's attention. Interactive elements such as polls, animations, and transitions can keep the audience engaged, but they must be used judiciously to avoid distraction. Experienced presenters recommend rehearsing with the technology beforehand to ensure smooth execution. Arriving early to test equipment and familiarize oneself with the setup can prevent technical glitches that might otherwise disrupt the flow of a presentation. Remember, the goal is to use technology to deliver a compelling presentation that resonates with the audience.

The Power of Body Language and Eye Contact in Presentations

Body language and eye contact are among the most effective presentation skills that can significantly influence the success of a presentation. Appropriate gestures, facial expressions, and posture convey confidence and enthusiasm, which can be contagious to the audience. A presenter who stands tall, makes eye contact, and uses hand gestures effectively can command the room and keep the audience engaged. It's not just about what you say, but how you say it; your body language speaks volumes about your self-confidence and belief in your message.

Moreover, maintaining eye contact with audience members is a powerful way to connect on a personal level, making your presentation more compelling. It signals to the audience that you are focused on them and interested in their reaction. However, it's important to strike a balance; too much eye contact can be intimidating, while too little can make you seem disengaged. Practice varying your eye contact throughout the room, making sure to include even those in the back or on the sides. This inclusive approach helps ensure that all audience members feel acknowledged and valued during your presentation.

Integrating Effective Visuals in Presentations

Visual aids are not just supplementary elements; they are integral to delivering a successful presentation. When used appropriately, they can transform a good presentation into a compelling one, capturing the audience's attention and reinforcing your message. The most effective presentation skills involve the strategic use of visuals to clarify complex information and illustrate points vividly. Whether it's a simple pie chart or an intricate infographic, each visual should be designed with the target audience in mind, ensuring that it adds value rather than distracts.

Incorporating visuals into your own presentation requires a balance between content and aesthetics. Slides should not be overcrowded with bullet points; instead, they should support the speaker's words with impactful imagery or key takeaways. Remember, the vast majority of audience members are more likely to remember information that is visually stimulating. Tools like Microsoft PowerPoint or other presentation tools offer a range of options to create these visuals. By practicing the integration of visuals in your rehearsals, you can ensure that they complement your delivery rather than compete for attention.

Overcoming Pre-Presentation Jitters

Pre-presentation jitters are a common experience, even for the most seasoned presenters. Good presentation skills involve recognizing these feelings and implementing strategies to manage them effectively. One of the most important things to do is to arrive early, allowing yourself time to become familiar with the presentation space. This can help reduce anxiety and provide an opportunity to troubleshoot any issues with presentation tools or visual aids. Taking deep breaths and engaging in light stretching or breathing techniques can also help calm nerves before taking the stage.

Another key strategy is to focus on the message you want to convey rather than on your own nervousness. By shifting the focus to the value you are providing to your audience, self-confidence naturally increases. It's also a great idea to have a personal story or anecdote ready to share; this not only makes the presentation more relatable but also serves as a comfortable starting point for many speakers. Remember, the goal is not to eliminate nerves entirely but to harness that energy into positive enthusiasm that enhances your stage presence and keeps the audience engaged.

The Role of Practice in Polishing Your Performance

Practice is, without a doubt, the most important thing you can do to improve your presentation skills. Repeatedly rehearsing your speech allows you to refine your delivery, work on your timing, and ensure you are comfortable with the material. It's a great idea to practice in front of a small group or even alone, using a mirror to observe your body language and facial expressions. TED Talks and other presentations by experienced presenters can serve as excellent examples to emulate. By the time the big meeting or event arrives, you should feel as though you know your presentation inside and out.

Utilizing Feedback to Hone Your Skills

In addition to self-rehearsal, seeking feedback from others can be invaluable. Whether it's from colleagues, friends, or a speaking coach, constructive criticism can provide insights into areas of your presentation that may need more detail or a different approach. Use this feedback to adjust your content, delivery, and even your visual aids. Remember, the goal is not to memorize your presentation word for word but to be so familiar with the material that you can speak about it conversationally. This level of preparation helps to reduce pre-presentation jitters and sets the stage for a successful presentation.

Handling Questions and Feedback

Be prepared to handle questions and feedback during and after your presentation. Listen carefully to the questions, provide thoughtful answers, and use the feedback to improve future presentations. Remember, questions are a sign that the audience is engaged and interested in your topic.

The Power of Storytelling

Storytelling is a powerful tool in presentations. A well-told story can captivate the audience, make complex ideas more understandable, and create a memorable experience. Incorporate stories that are relevant to your message and resonate with your audience.

Maintaining Audience's Attention

To maintain the audience's attention, vary the tone of your voice, use hand gestures to emphasize points, and move around the stage to engage different parts of the audience. Make eye contact with various audience members to create a connection and keep them involved in your presentation.

The Role of Confidence

Confidence is the cornerstone of a compelling presentation. It reassures the audience that you are knowledgeable and passionate about your topic. Build your confidence by mastering the subject matter and practicing your delivery until it feels natural.

Incorporating Humor

Humor, when used appropriately, can be an effective way to connect with your audience and make your presentation more enjoyable. Be mindful of your audience and the context of your presentation when incorporating humor to ensure it is well-received.

Using Personal Experiences

Sharing personal experiences can make your presentation more relatable and authentic. It allows the audience to see the real-life application of your ideas and can help illustrate your points in a way that facts and figures alone cannot.

The Art of Persuasion

A successful presentation often involves persuading the audience to accept a new idea or take action. Use logical arguments, credible evidence, and emotional appeals to persuade your audience effectively. Be clear about what you want them to think, feel, or do after your presentation.

Adapting to Different Audiences

Every audience is different, and adapting your presentation to fit the specific audience you are addressing is crucial. Consider the audience's background, knowledge level, and expectations when preparing your presentation. This will help you connect with them more effectively.

The Use of Non-Verbal Cues

Non-verbal cues, such as facial expressions, gestures, and posture, can reinforce your message or contradict it. Be aware of your non-verbal communication and ensure it aligns with what you are saying. This consistency will enhance your credibility and the impact of your presentation.

Continuous Improvement

The journey to improve presentation skills is ongoing. Seek out opportunities for public speaking, ask for feedback, and reflect on your performances to identify areas for improvement. Continuous learning and adaptation are key to becoming a master presenter.

Effective presentation skills are vital for professional success and personal development. This guide has explored various aspects of presentation skills, from body language and visual aids to overcoming stage fright and engaging the audience. By incorporating these strategies and continuously practicing, you can improve your presentation skills and deliver compelling presentations that captivate your audience.

FAQ Section

How can I overcome my fear of public speaking?

Overcoming the fear of public speaking involves preparation, practice, and employing techniques such as deep breathing and positive visualization. It's also helpful to start with smaller, more familiar audiences and gradually work your way up to larger groups.

What are some effective ways to engage my audience during a presentation?

Engaging your audience can be achieved by asking questions, encouraging participation, using storytelling, incorporating humor, and making eye contact. Tailoring your content to the audience's interests and involving them in the presentation can also keep them engaged.

How important are visual aids in a presentation?

Visual aids are very important as they can help illustrate and reinforce your points. They should be used to complement your message, not replace it. Ensure that your visual aids are clear, professional, and relevant to the content of your presentation.

Related Topics

  • Public Speaking
  • Storytelling in Business
  • Emotional Intelligence in Leadership
  • Nonverbal Communication
  • Audience Analysis

Recommended Reading

Click on the link to purchase the book.

  • Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World's Top Minds by Carmine Gallo
  • Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery by Garr Reynolds
  • The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience by Carmine Gallo
  • Slide:ology: The Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations by Nancy Duarte
  • Resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences by Nancy Duarte

Teach This Topic

  • Practice Sessions: Organize regular practice sessions where team members can present on various topics and receive constructive feedback.
  • Workshops on Nonverbal Communication: Conduct workshops focusing on the importance of body language, eye contact, and voice modulation in effective presentations.
  • Storytelling Exercises: Implement storytelling exercises to enhance the ability to convey messages in a more engaging and relatable manner.
  • Tech-Savvy Presentations: Provide training on the latest presentation tools and software to create visually appealing and interactive presentations.
  • Public Speaking Clubs: Encourage participation in public speaking clubs or groups to build confidence and improve presentation skills in a supportive environment.

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The Importance of Presentation Skills: That You Must Know About

Uncover The Importance of Presentation Skills in this comprehensive blog. Begin with a brief introduction to the art of effective presentations and its wide-reaching significance. Delve into the vital role of presentation skills in both your personal and professional life, understanding how they can shape your success.


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Table of Contents  

1) A brief introduction to Presentation Skills 

2) Importance of Presentation Skills in personal life 

3) Importance of Presentation Skills in professional life 

4) Tips to improve your Presentation Skills 

5) Conclusion 

A brief introduction to Presentation Skills  

Presentation skills can be defined as the ability to deliver information confidently and persuasively to engage and influence the audience. Be it in personal or professional settings; mastering Presentation Skills empowers individuals to convey their ideas with clarity, build confidence, and leave a lasting impression. From public speaking to business pitches, honing these skills can lead to greater success in diverse spheres of life.  You can also refer to various presentation skills interview questions and answer to build you confidence! This blog will also look into the advantages and disadvantages of presentations .It is therefore important to understand the elements of presentations .

Importance of Presentation Skills in personal life  

Effective Presentation skills are not limited to professional settings alone; they play a significant role in personal life as well. Let us now dive deeper into the Importance of Presentation Skills in one’s personal life:    

Importance of Presentation Skills in personal life

Expressing ideas clearly   

In day-to-day conversations with family, friends, or acquaintances, having good Presentation skills enables you to articulate your thoughts and ideas clearly. Whether you're discussing plans for the weekend or sharing your opinions on a particular topic, being an effective communicator encourages better understanding and engagement. 

Enhancing social confidence  

Many individuals struggle with social anxiety or nervousness in social gatherings. Mastering Presentation skills helps boost self-confidence, making it easier to navigate social situations with ease. The ability to present yourself confidently and engage others in conversation enhances your social life and opens doors to new relationships. 

Creating memories on special occasions  

There are moments in life that call for public speaking, such as proposing a toast at a wedding, delivering a speech at a family gathering, or giving a Presentation during special events. Having polished Presentation skills enables you to leave a positive and lasting impression on the audience, making these occasions even more memorable. 

Handling challenging conversations  

Life often presents challenging situations that require delicate communication, such as expressing condolences or resolving conflicts. Strong Presentation skills help you convey your feelings and thoughts sensitively, encouraging effective and empathetic communication during difficult times. 

Building stronger relationships  

Being a skilled presenter means being a good listener as well. Active listening is a fundamental aspect of effective Presentations, and when applied in personal relationships, it strengthens bonds and builds trust. Empathising with others and showing genuine interest in their stories and opinions enhances the quality of your relationships. 

Advocating for personal goals  

Whether you're pursuing personal projects or seeking support for a cause you're passionate about, the ability to present your ideas persuasively helps garner support and enthusiasm from others. This can be beneficial in achieving personal goals and making a positive impact on your community. 

Inspiring and motivating others  

In one’s personal life, Presentation skills are not just about delivering formal speeches; they also involve inspiring and motivating others through your actions and words. Whether you're sharing your experiences, mentoring someone, or encouraging loved ones during tough times, your Presentation skills can be a source of inspiration for others. 

Exuding leadership traits  

Effective Presentation skills go hand in hand with leadership qualities. Being able to communicate clearly and influence others' perspectives positions you as a leader within your family, social circles, or community. Leadership in personal life involves guiding and supporting others towards positive outcomes. 

Unlock your full potential as a presenter with our Presentation Skills Training Course. Join now!  

Importance of Presentation Skills in professional life  

Effective Presentation skills are a vital asset for career growth and success in professional life. Let us now explore the importance of Presentation skills for students and workers:  

Importance of Presentation Skills in professional life

Impressing employers and clients  

During job interviews or business meetings, a well-delivered Presentation showcases your knowledge, confidence, and ability to communicate ideas effectively. It impresses employers, clients, and potential investors, leaving a positive and memorable impression that can tilt the scales in your favour. 

Advancing in your career  

In the corporate world, promotions and career advancements often involve presenting your achievements, ideas, and future plans to decision-makers. Strong Presentation skills demonstrate your leadership potential and readiness for higher responsibilities, opening doors to new opportunities. 

Effective team collaboration  

As a professional, you often need to present projects, strategies, or updates to your team or colleagues. A compelling Presentation facilitates better understanding and association among team members, leading to more productive and successful projects. 

Persuasive selling techniques  

For sales and marketing professionals, Presentation skills are instrumental in persuading potential customers to choose your products or services. An engaging sales pitch can sway buying decisions, leading to increased revenue and business growth. 

Creating impactful proposals  

In the corporate world, proposals are crucial for securing new partnerships or business deals. A well-structured and compelling Presentation can make your proposal stand out and increase the chances of successful negotiations. 

Gaining and retaining clients  

Whether you are a freelancer, consultant, or business owner, Presentation skills play a key role in winning and retaining clients. A captivating Presentation not only convinces clients of your capabilities but also builds trust and promotes long-term relationships. 

Enhancing public speaking engagements  

Professional life often involves speaking at conferences, seminars, or industry events. Being a confident and engaging speaker allows you to deliver your message effectively, position yourself as an expert, and expand your professional network. 

Influencing stakeholders and decision-makers  

As you climb the corporate ladder, you may find yourself presenting to senior management or board members. Effective Presentations are essential for gaining support for your ideas, projects, or initiatives from key stakeholders. 

Handling meetings and discussions  

In meetings, being able to present your thoughts clearly and concisely contributes to productive discussions and efficient decision-making. It ensures that your ideas are understood and considered by colleagues and superiors. 

Professional development  

Investing time in honing Presentation skills is a form of professional development. As you become a more effective presenter, you become a more valuable asset to your organisation and industry. 

Building a personal brand  

A strong personal brand is vital for professional success. Impressive Presentations contribute to building a positive reputation and positioning yourself as a thought leader or industry expert. 

Career transitions and interviews  

When seeking new opportunities or transitioning to a different industry, Presentation Skills are essential for communicating your transferable skills and showcasing your adaptability to potential employers. 

Take your Presentations to the next level with our Effective Presentation Skills & Techniques Course. Sign up today!  

Tips to improve your Presentation Skills  

Now that you know about the importance of presentation skills in personal and professional life, we will now provide you with tips to Improve Your Presentation Skills .

1) Know your audience: Understand the demographics and interests of your audience to tailor your Presentation accordingly. 

2) Practice regularly: Rehearse your speech multiple times to refine content and delivery. 

3) Seek feedback: Gather feedback from peers or mentors to identify areas for improvement. 

4) Manage nervousness: Use relaxation techniques to overcome nervousness before presenting. 

5) Engage with eye contact: Maintain eye contact with the audience to establish a connection. 

6) Use clear visuals: Utilise impactful visuals to complement your spoken words. 

7) Emphasise key points: Highlight important information to enhance audience retention. 

8) Employ body language: Use confident and purposeful gestures to convey your message. 

9) Handle Q&A confidently: Prepare for potential questions and answer them with clarity. 

10) Add personal stories: Include relevant anecdotes to make your Presentation more relatable.   

Presentation Skills Training

All in all, Presentation skills are a valuable asset, impacting both personal and professional realms of life. By mastering these skills, you can become a more effective communicator, a confident professional, and a persuasive influencer. Continuous improvement and adaptation to technological advancements will ensure you stay ahead in this competitive world. 

Want to master the art of impactful Presentations? Explore our Presentation Skills Courses and elevate your communication prowess!  

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  • Presentation Skills
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Presentation skills can be defined as a set of abilities that enable an individual to: interact with the audience; transmit the messages with clarity; engage the audience in the presentation; and interpret and understand the mindsets of the listeners. These skills refine the way you put forward your messages and enhance your persuasive powers.

The present era places great emphasis on good presentation skills. This is because they play an important role in convincing the clients and customers. Internally, management with good presentation skills is better able to communicate the mission and vision of the organization to the employees.

Importance of Presentation Skills

Interaction with others is a routine job of businesses in today’s world. The importance of good presentation skills is established on the basis of following points:

  • They help an individual in enhancing his own growth opportunities. In addition, it also grooms the personality of the presenter and elevates his levels of confidence.
  • In case of striking deals and gaining clients, it is essential for the business professionals to understand the audience. Good presentation skills enable an individual to mold his message according to the traits of the audience. This increases the probability of successful transmission of messages.
  • Lastly, business professionals have to arrange seminars and give presentations almost every day. Having good presentation skills not only increases an individual’s chances of success, but also enable him to add greatly to the organization.

How to Improve Presentation Skills

Development of good presentation skills requires efforts and hard work. To improve your presentation skills, you must:

  • Research the Audience before Presenting: This will enable you to better understand the traits of the audience. You can then develop messages that can be better understood by your target audience. For instance, in case of an analytical audience, you can add more facts and figures in your presentation.
  • Structure your Presentation Effectively: The best way to do this is to start with telling the audience, in the introduction, what you are going to present. Follow this by presenting the idea, and finish off the presentation by repeating the main points.
  • Do a lot of Practice: Rehearse but do not go for memorizing the presentation. Rehearsals reduce your anxiety and enable you to look confident on the presentation day. Make sure you practice out loud, as it enables you to identify and eliminate errors more efficiently. Do not memorize anything as it will make your presentation look mechanical. This can reduce the degree of audience engagement.
  • Take a Workshop: Most medium and large businesses allow their employees to take employee development courses and workshops, as well-trained employees are essential to the success of any company. You can use that opportunity to take a workshop on professional presentation skills such as those offered by Langevin Learning Services , which are useful for all business professionals, from employees to business trainers and managers.

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Ideas and insights from Harvard Business Publishing Corporate Learning

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Powerful and Effective Presentation Skills: More in Demand Now Than Ever

professional development presentation skills

When we talk with our L&D colleagues from around the globe, we often hear that presentation skills training is one of the top opportunities they’re looking to provide their learners. And this holds true whether their learners are individual contributors, people managers, or senior leaders. This is not surprising.

Effective communications skills are a powerful career activator, and most of us are called upon to communicate in some type of formal presentation mode at some point along the way.

For instance, you might be asked to brief management on market research results, walk your team through a new process, lay out the new budget, or explain a new product to a client or prospect. Or you may want to build support for a new idea, bring a new employee into the fold, or even just present your achievements to your manager during your performance review.

And now, with so many employees working from home or in hybrid mode, and business travel in decline, there’s a growing need to find new ways to make effective presentations when the audience may be fully virtual or a combination of in person and remote attendees.

Whether you’re making a standup presentation to a large live audience, or a sit-down one-on-one, whether you’re delivering your presentation face to face or virtually, solid presentation skills matter.

Even the most seasoned and accomplished presenters may need to fine-tune or update their skills. Expectations have changed over the last decade or so. Yesterday’s PowerPoint which primarily relied on bulleted points, broken up by the occasional clip-art image, won’t cut it with today’s audience.

The digital revolution has revolutionized the way people want to receive information. People expect presentations that are more visually interesting. They expect to see data, metrics that support assertions. And now, with so many previously in-person meetings occurring virtually, there’s an entirely new level of technical preparedness required.

The leadership development tools and the individual learning opportunities you’re providing should include presentation skills training that covers both the evergreen fundamentals and the up-to-date capabilities that can make or break a presentation.

So, just what should be included in solid presentation skills training? Here’s what I think.

The fundamentals will always apply When it comes to making a powerful and effective presentation, the fundamentals will always apply. You need to understand your objective. Is it strictly to convey information, so that your audience’s knowledge is increased? Is it to persuade your audience to take some action? Is it to convince people to support your idea? Once you understand what your objective is, you need to define your central message. There may be a lot of things you want to share with your audience during your presentation, but find – and stick with – the core, the most important point you want them to walk away with. And make sure that your message is clear and compelling.

You also need to tailor your presentation to your audience. Who are they and what might they be expecting? Say you’re giving a product pitch to a client. A technical team may be interested in a lot of nitty-gritty product detail. The business side will no doubt be more interested in what returns they can expect on their investment.

Another consideration is the setting: is this a formal presentation to a large audience with questions reserved for the end, or a presentation in a smaller setting where there’s the possibility for conversation throughout? Is your presentation virtual or in-person? To be delivered individually or as a group? What time of the day will you be speaking? Will there be others speaking before you and might that impact how your message will be received?

Once these fundamentals are established, you’re in building mode. What are the specific points you want to share that will help you best meet your objective and get across your core message? Now figure out how to convey those points in the clearest, most straightforward, and succinct way. This doesn’t mean that your presentation has to be a series of clipped bullet points. No one wants to sit through a presentation in which the presenter reads through what’s on the slide. You can get your points across using stories, fact, diagrams, videos, props, and other types of media.

Visual design matters While you don’t want to clutter up your presentation with too many visual elements that don’t serve your objective and can be distracting, using a variety of visual formats to convey your core message will make your presentation more memorable than slides filled with text. A couple of tips: avoid images that are cliched and overdone. Be careful not to mix up too many different types of images. If you’re using photos, stick with photos. If you’re using drawn images, keep the style consistent. When data are presented, stay consistent with colors and fonts from one type of chart to the next. Keep things clear and simple, using data to support key points without overwhelming your audience with too much information. And don’t assume that your audience is composed of statisticians (unless, of course, it is).

When presenting qualitative data, brief videos provide a way to engage your audience and create emotional connection and impact. Word clouds are another way to get qualitative data across.

Practice makes perfect You’ve pulled together a perfect presentation. But it likely won’t be perfect unless it’s well delivered. So don’t forget to practice your presentation ahead of time. Pro tip: record yourself as you practice out loud. This will force you to think through what you’re going to say for each element of your presentation. And watching your recording will help you identify your mistakes—such as fidgeting, using too many fillers (such as “umm,” or “like”), or speaking too fast.

A key element of your preparation should involve anticipating any technical difficulties. If you’ve embedded videos, make sure they work. If you’re presenting virtually, make sure that the lighting is good, and that your speaker and camera are working. Whether presenting in person or virtually, get there early enough to work out any technical glitches before your presentation is scheduled to begin. Few things are a bigger audience turn-off than sitting there watching the presenter struggle with the delivery mechanisms!

Finally, be kind to yourself. Despite thorough preparation and practice, sometimes, things go wrong, and you need to recover in the moment, adapt, and carry on. It’s unlikely that you’ll have caused any lasting damage and the important thing is to learn from your experience, so your next presentation is stronger.

How are you providing presentation skills training for your learners?

Manika Gandhi is Senior Learning Design Manager at Harvard Business Publishing Corporate Learning. Email her at [email protected] .

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JHM Professional Development and Career Office Awareness. Preparation. Development.

Presentation skills.

In any career, clear communication is essential, and in academic research, one must be able to present their work effectively to many audiences. The resources below will help you create oral and poster presentations for conferences and seminars, scientific pitches for networking, and talks for general audiences.

Oral Presentations

  • Dr. Doug Robinson provides tips on how to craft slides that are informative and complement your oral presentation.
  • The Carey Business School’s Presentation Skills Workbook: A guide to preparing powerful presentations has advice on verbal and non-verbal presentation skills .
  • Best Practices for Effective Presentations
  • Creating and Presenting your Poster
  • PowerPoint Design Concept-White Space
  • PowerPoint Design Concept-Visual Hierarchy
  • Designing Effective Presentations-Fonts

Poster Presentations

  • The NIH presentation Creating and Presenting Dynamic Scientific Posters will guide you through making and presenting a poster, and includes examples.
  • Ten simple rules for a Good Poster Presentation , PLoS Computational Biology

Empower Your Pitch

Empower Your Pitch is a doctoral communication competition that develops the research communication skills of participants, enabling them to deliver diverse pitches to diverse people. The competition empowers presenters to communicate the value of their research at any stage of development and across all disciplines – including STEMM, Humanities, Education, and Social Sciences – in a maximum time frame of three minutes. Presenters may rely on assorted strategies to capture the audience’s attention, convey the essence of their research, and explain its relevance to their listeners.

Unlock the power of communication to share the full potential of your ideas – click here to learn more and register!

Scientific Pitches - 1-minute talks

Drs. Damani Piggott and Caren Freel Myers share their tips for crafting short, persuasive talks about one's research—without the use of slides or visual aids!

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Presentation Skills

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  • You have already developed the skill enough for your future career plans (right),
  • Expect to develop the skill as part of your program (center), or
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After completing the assessment, save your results and  return to this page  to identify the resources you need.  You should also plan to speak with an advisor in your department or group about your progress on the skills you've identified as "expect to develop."

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Professional Presentation Skills

Take your organization to its next level of excellence

  • Understand the fundamentals of effective, successful presentations
  • Plan and prepare powerful presentations that engage the audience
  • Eliminate speaker anxiety and nervousness
  • Polish and learn delivery techniques to present information like a professional
  • Use visual aids effectively
  • Skillfully handle difficult presentation situations

Course Outline

Interested in bringing this course to your organization? Let’s connect!

Presentation skills are vital for business professionals today. How information is presented to groups and individuals can determine the effectiveness of the message and its outcome. Presentation skills can affect the speaker’s influence and credibility and make a remarkable difference when getting the message across to listeners. This unique program gives learners the techniques and skills necessary for an effective presentation and helps them engage an audience with confidence.


Module 1: fundamentals of effective presentations.

Presentation skills development starts with understanding the fundamentals of effective and powerful presentations.

  • Articulate the fundamentals of a purposeful message and presentation
  • Describe factors that impair presentations
  • Explain how to establish credibility and confidence as a speaker

Module 2: Planning and Preparing a Powerful Presentation

A speaker must consider their audience’s needs in order to capture their interest and inspire them into action. Careful planning is critical to the success. 

  • Discuss the purpose and goal of business presentations
  • Describe techniques that facilitate listeners’ motivation to change or act
  • Summarize how to prepare a presentation that meets the audience’s needs

Module 3: Eliminate Speaker Anxiety and Nervousness

Public speaking is one of the most important yet most feared forms of communication.

  • Identify why people feel anxious about public speaking
  • Describe techniques to reduce and control stress and speaker anxiety
  • Review the use of speaking techniques to ease audience tension

Module 4: Polishing and Delivering a Presentation Like a Pro

Leaders, formal and informal, need to be able to deliver a clear, succinct and inspiring message.

  • Recognize effective openers and closers
  • Distinguish appropriate use of verbal and nonverbal communication
  • Discuss focusing and controlling questions and answers

Module 5: Using Visual Aids Effectively

Presentation aids are valuable to getting a clear message across to audiences of all ages, education levels, degrees of interest or motivation. 

  • Describe the purpose of presentation aids
  • Explain the range of choices for presentation aids
  • Articulate the role of careful planning and good execution when using presentation aids

Module 6: Skillfully Handling Difficult Presentation Situations

Speakers need to be prepared to handle difficult situations that may arise with confidence and skill.

  • Outline the methods to handle negative reactions to a presentation
  • State general guidelines for dealing with problem audience behaviors
  • Describe techniques to handle critics

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Home Blog Education Presentation Skills 101: A Guide to Presentation Success

Presentation Skills 101: A Guide to Presentation Success

Getting the perfect presentation design is just a step toward a successful presentation. For the experienced user, building presentation skills is the answer to elevating the power of your message and showing expertise on any subject. Still, one can ask: is it the same set of skills, or are they dependable on the type of presentation?

In this article, we will introduce the different types of presentations accompanied by the skillset required to master them. The purpose, as always, is to retain the audience’s interest for a long-lasting and convincing message.

cover for presentation skills guide

Table of Contents

The Importance of Presentation Skills

Persuasive presentations, instructional presentations, informative presentations, inspirational presentations, basic presentation skills, what are the main difficulties when giving a presentation, recommendations to improve your presentation skills, closing statement.

Effective communication is the answer to reaching business and academic goals. The scenarios in which we can be required to deliver a presentation are as diverse as one can imagine. Still, some core concepts apply to all presentations.

 We define presentation skills as a compendium of soft skills that directly affect your presentation performance and contribute to creating a great presentation. These are not qualities acquired by birth but skills you ought to train and master to delve into professional environments.

You may ask: is it really that evident when a presenter is not prepared? Here are some common signs people can experience during presentations:

  • Evasive body language: Not making eye contact with the audience, arms closed tightly to the body, hands in pockets all the time.
  • Lack of interest in the presenter’s voice: dull tone, not putting an effort to articulate the topics.
  • Doubting when asked to answer a question
  • Irksome mood

The list can go on about common presenter mistakes , and most certainly, it will affect the performance of any presented data if the lack of interest by the presenter is blatantly obvious.  Another element to consider is anxiety, and according to research by the National Institute of Mental Health, 73% of the population in the USA is affected by glossophobia , which is the fear of public speaking, judgment, or negative evaluation by other people.

Therefore, presentation skills training is essential for any business professional who wants to achieve effective communication . It will remove the anxiety from presentation performance and help users effectively deliver their message and connect with the audience.

Archetypes of presentations

Persuasive presentations aim to convince the audience – often in short periods – to acquire a product or service, adhere to a cause, or invest in a company. For business entrepreneurs or politicians, persuasive presentations are their tool for the trade.

Unless you aim to be perceived as an imposter, a proper persuasive presentation has the elements of facts, empathy, and logic, balanced under a well-crafted narrative. The central pillar of these presentations is to identify the single factor that gathered your audience: it could be a market need, a social cause, or a revolutionary concept for today’s society. It has to be something with enough power to gather critiques – both good and bad.

That single factor has to be backed up by facts. Research that builds your hypothesis on how to solve that problem. A deep understanding of the target audience’s needs , concerns, and social position regarding the solution your means can offer. When those elements are in place, building a pitch becomes an easy task. 

Graphics can help you introduce information in a compelling format, lowering the need for lengthy presentations. Good presentation skills for persuasive presentations go by the hand of filtering relevant data and creating the visual cues that resonate with what your audience demands.

One powerful example of a persuasive presentation is the technique known as the elevator pitch . You must introduce your idea or product convincingly to the audience in a timeframe between 30 seconds and less than 2 minutes. You have to expose:

  • What do you do 
  • What’s the problem to solve
  • Why is your solution different from others 
  • Why should the audience care about your expertise

presentation skills an elevator pitch slide

For that very purpose, using engaging graphics with contrasting colors elevates the potential power of your message. It speaks professionalism, care for details, and out-of-the-box thinking. Knowing how to end a presentation is also critical, as your CTAs should be placed with care.

Therefore, let’s resume the requirements of persuasive presentations in terms of good presentation skills:

  • Identifying problems and needs
  • Elaborating “the hook” (the element that grabs the audience’s attention)
  • Knowing how to “tie” your audience (introducing a piece of information related to the hook that causes an emotional impact)
  • Broad knowledge of body language and hand gestures to quickly convey your message
  • Being prepared to argue a defense of your point of view
  • Handling rejection
  • Having a proactive attitude to convert opportunities into new projects
  • Using humor, surprise, or personal anecdotes as elements to sympathize with the audience
  • Having confidence
  • Be able to summarize facts and information in visually appealing ways

skills required for persuasive presentations

You can learn more about persuasive presentation techniques by clicking here .

In the case of instructional presentations, we ought to differentiate two distinctive types:

  • Lecture Presentations : Presentations being held at universities or any other educative institution. Those presentations cover, topic by topic, and the contents of a syllabus and are created by the team of teachers in charge of the course.
  • Training Presentations : These presentations take place during in-company training sessions and usually comprise a good amount of content that is resumed into easy-to-take solutions. They are aimed to coach employees over certain topics relevant to their work performance. The 70-20-10 Model is frequently used to address these training situations.

Lecture presentations appeal to the gradual introduction of complex concepts, following a structure set in the course’s syllabus. These presentations often have a similar aesthetic as a group of professors or researchers created to share their knowledge about a topic. Personal experience does tell that course presentations often rely on factual data, adequately documented, and on the theoretical side.

An example of a presentation that lies under this concept is a Syllabus Presentation, used by the teaching team to introduce the subject to new students, evaluation methods, concepts to be learned, and expectations to pass the course.

using a course syllabus presentation to boost your instructional presentation skills

On the other hand, training presentations are slide decks designed to meet an organization’s specific needs in the formal education of their personnel. Commonly known as “continuous education,” plenty of companies invest resources in coaching their employees to achieve higher performance results. These presentations have the trademark of being concise since their idea is to introduce the concepts that shall be applied in practice sessions. 

Ideally, the training presentations are introduced with little text and easy-to-recognize visual cues. Since the idea is to summarize as much as possible, these are visually appealing for the audience. They must be dynamic enough to allow the presenter to convey the message.

presentation skills example of a training presentation

Those key takeaways remind employees when they revisit their learning resources and allow them to ruminate on questions that fellow workers raise. 

To sum up this point, building presentation skills for instructional presentations requires:

  • Ability to put complex concepts into simpler words
  • Patience and a constant learning mindset
  • Voice training to deliver lengthy speeches without being too dense
  • Ability to summarize points and note the key takeaways
  • Empathizing with the audience to understand their challenges in the learning process

skill requirements for instructional presentations

The informative presentations take place in business situations, such as when to present project reports from different departments to the management. Another potential usage of these presentations is in SCRUM or other Agile methodologies, when a sprint is completed, to discuss the advance of the project with the Product Owner.

As they are presentations heavily dependent on data insights, it’s common to see the usage of infographics and charts to express usually dense data in simpler terms and easy to remember. 

a SCRUM process being shown in an informative slide

Informative presentations don’t just fall into the business category. Ph.D. Dissertation and Thesis presentations are topics that belong to the informative presentations category as they condense countless research hours into manageable reports for the academic jury. 

an example of a thesis dissertation template

Since these informational presentations can be perceived as lengthy and data-filled, it is important to learn the following professional presentation skills:

  • Attention to detail
  • Be able to explain complex information in simpler terms
  • Creative thinking
  • Powerful diction
  • Working on pauses and transitions
  • Pacing the presentation, so not too much information is divulged per slide

skill requirements for informational presentations

The leading inspirational platform, TEDx, comes to mind when talking about inspirational presentations. This presentation format has the peculiarity of maximizing the engagement with the audience to divulge a message, and due to that, it has specific requirements any presenter must meet.

This presentation format usually involves a speaker on a stage, either sitting or better standing, in which the presenter engages with the audience with a storytelling format about a life experience, a job done that provided a remarkable improvement for society, etc.

using a quote slide to boost inspirational presentation skills

Empathizing with the audience is the key ingredient for these inspirational presentations. Still, creativity is what shapes the outcome of your performance as people are constantly looking for different experiences – not the same recipe rephrased with personal touches. The human factor is what matters here, way above data and research. What has your experience to offer to others? How can it motivate another human being to pursue a similar path or discover their true calling?

To achieve success in terms of communication skills presentation, these inspirational presentations have the following requirements:

  • Focus on the audience (engage, consider their interests, and make them a part of your story)
  • Putting ego aside
  • Creative communication skills
  • Storytelling skills
  • Body language knowledge to apply the correct gestures to accompany your story
  • Voice training
  • Using powerful words

skills required for inspirational presentations

After discussing the different kinds of presentations we can come across at any stage of our lives, a group of presentation skills is standard in any type of presentation. See below what makes a good presentation and which skills you must count on to succeed as a presenter.


Punctuality is a crucial aspect of giving an effective presentation. Nothing says more about respect for your audience and the organization you represent than delivering the presentation on time . Arriving last minute puts pressure on the tech team behind audiovisuals, as they don’t have enough preparation to test microphones, stage lights, and projector settings, which can lead to a less powerful presentation Even when discussing presentations hosted in small rooms for a reduced audience, testing the equipment becomes essential for an effective presentation.

A solution for this is to arrive at least 30 minutes early. Ideally, one hour is a sweet spot since the AV crew has time to check the gear and requirements for your presentation. Another benefit of this, for example, in inspirational presentations, is measuring the previous presenter’s impact on the audience. This gives insights about how to resonate with the public, and their interest, and how to accommodate your presentation for maximum impact.

Body Language

Our bodies can make emotions transparent for others, even when we are unaware of such a fact. Proper training for body language skills reduces performance anxiety, giving the audience a sense of expertise about the presented topic. 

Give your presentation and the audience the respect they deserve by watching over these potential mistakes:

  • Turning your back to the audience for extended periods : It’s okay to do so when introducing an important piece of information or explaining a graph, but it is considered rude to give your back to the audience constantly.
  • Fidgeting : We are all nervous in the presence of strangers, even more, if we are the center of attention for that moment. Instead of playing with your hair or making weird hand gestures, take a deep breath to center yourself before the presentation and remember that everything you could do to prepare is already done. Trust your instincts and give your best.
  • Intense eye contact : Have you watched a video where the presenter stared at the camera the entire time? That’s the feeling you transmit to spectators through intense eye contact. It’s a practice often used by politicians to persuade.
  • Swearing : This is a no-brainer. Even when you see influencers swearing on camera or in podcasts or live presentations, it is considered an informal and lousy practice for business and academic situations. If you have a habit to break when it comes to this point, find the humor in these situations and replace your swear words with funny alternatives (if the presentation allows for it). 

Voice Tone plays a crucial role in delivering effective presentations and knowing how to give a good presentation. Your voice is a powerful tool for exposing your ideas and feelings . Your voice can articulate the message you are telling, briefing the audience if you feel excited about what you are sharing or, in contrast, if you feel the presentation is a burden you ought to complete.

Remember, passion is a primary ingredient in convincing people. Therefore, transmitting such passion with a vibrant voice may help gather potential business partners’ interest.  

But what if you feel sick prior to the presentation? If, by chance, your throat is sore minutes before setting foot on the stage, try this: when introducing yourself, mention that you are feeling a bit under the weather. This resonates with the audience to pay more attention to your efforts. In case you don’t feel comfortable about that, ask the organizers for a cup of tea, as it will settle your throat and relax your nerves.

Tech Skills

Believe it or not, people still feel challenged by technology these days. Maybe that’s the reason why presentation giants like Tony Robbins opt not to use PowerPoint presentations . The reality is that there are plenty of elements involved in a presentation that can go wrong from the tech side:

  • A PDF not opening
  • Saving your presentation in a too-recent PowerPoint version
  • A computer not booting up
  • Mac laptops and their never-ending compatibility nightmare
  • Not knowing how to change between slides
  • Not knowing how to use a laser pointer
  • Internet not working
  • Audio not working

We can come up with a pretty long list of potential tech pitfalls, and yet more than half of them fall in presenters not being knowledgeable about technology.

If computers aren’t your thing, let the organization know about this beforehand. There is always a crew member available to help presenters switch between slides or configure the presentation for streaming. This takes the pressure off your shoulders, allowing you to concentrate on the content to present. Remember, even Bill Gates can get a BSOD during a presentation .

Presentations, while valuable for conveying information and ideas, can be daunting for many individuals. Here are some common difficulties people encounter when giving presentations:

Public Speaking Anxiety

Glossophobia, the fear of public speaking, affects a significant portion of the population. This anxiety can lead to nervousness, trembling, and forgetfulness during a presentation.

Lack of Confidence

Many presenters struggle with self-doubt, fearing that they may not be knowledgeable or skilled enough to engage their audience effectively.

Content Organization

Organizing information in a coherent and engaging manner can be challenging. Presenters often grapple with how to structure their content to make it easily digestible for the audience. Artificial Intelligence can help us significantly reduce the content arrangement time when you work with tools like our AI Presentation Maker (made for presenters by experts in presentation design). 

Audience Engagement

Keeping the audience’s attention and interest throughout the presentation can be difficult. Distractions, disengaged attendees, or lack of interaction can pose challenges.

Technical Issues

Technology glitches, such as malfunctioning equipment, incompatible file formats, or poor internet connectivity, can disrupt presentations and increase stress.

Time Management

Striking the right balance between providing enough information and staying within time limits is a common challenge. Going over or under the allotted time can affect the effectiveness of the presentation.

Handling Questions and Challenges

Responding to unexpected questions, criticism, or challenges from the audience can be difficult, especially when presenters are unprepared or lack confidence in their subject matter.

Visual Aids and Technology

Creating and effectively using visual aids like slides or multimedia can be a struggle for some presenters. Technical competence is essential in this aspect.

Language and Articulation

Poor language skills or unclear articulation can hinder effective communication. Presenters may worry about stumbling over words or failing to convey their message clearly.

Maintaining appropriate and confident body language can be challenging. Avoiding nervous habits, maintaining eye contact, and using gestures effectively requires practice.

Overcoming Impersonal Delivery

In virtual presentations, maintaining a personal connection with the audience can be difficult. The absence of face-to-face interaction can make it challenging to engage and read the audience.

Cultural and Diversity Awareness

Presenting to diverse audiences requires sensitivity to cultural differences and varying levels of familiarity with the topic.

In this section, we gathered some tips on how to improve presentation skills that can certainly make an impact if applied to your presentation skills. We believe these skills can be cultivated to transform into habits for your work routine.

Tip #1: Build a narrative

One memorable way to guarantee presentation success is by writing a story of all the points you desire to cover. This statement is based on the logic behind storytelling and its power to connect with people .

Don’t waste time memorizing slides or reading your presentation to the audience. It feels unnatural, and any question that diverts from the topic in discussion certainly puts you in jeopardy or, worse, exposes you as a fraud in the eyes of the audience. And before you ask, it is really evident when a presenter has a memorized speech. 

Build and rehearse the presentation as if telling a story to a group of interested people. Lower the language barrier by avoiding complex terms that maybe even you aren’t fully aware of their meaning. Consider the ramifications of that story, what it could lead to, and which are the opportunities to explore. Then, visualize yourself giving the presentation in a natural way.

Applying this technique makes the presentation feel like second nature to you. It broadens the spectrum in which you can show expertise over a topic or even build the basis for new interesting points of view about the project.

Tip #2: Don’t talk for more than 3 minutes per slide

It is a common practice of presenters to bombard the audience with facts and information whilst retaining the same slide on the screen. Why can this happen? It could be because the presenter condensed the talk into very few slides and preferred to talk. The reality is that your spectators won’t retain the information you are giving unless you give visual cues to help that process. 

Opt to prepare more slides and pace your speech to match the topics shown on each slide. Don’t spend more than 3 minutes per slide unless you have to introduce a complex piece of data. Use visual cues to direct the spectators about what you talk about, and summarize the principal concepts discussed at the end of each section.

Tip #3: Practice meditation daily

Anxiety is the number one enemy of professional presenters. It slowly builds without you being aware of your doubts and can hinder your performance in multiple ways: making you feel paralyzed, fidgeting, making you forget language skills or concepts, affecting your health, etc.

Meditation is an ancient practice taken from Buddhist teachings that train your mind to be here in the present. We often see the concepts of meditation and mindfulness as synonyms, whereas you should be aware that meditation is a practice that sets the blocks to reach a state of mindfulness. For presenters, being in the here and now is essential to retain focus, but meditation techniques also teach us to control our breathing and be in touch with our body signals when stress builds up. 

The customary practice of meditation has an impact on imagination and creativity but also helps to build patience – a skill much needed for connecting with your audience in instructional presentations.

Having the proper set of presentation skills can be quite subjective. It goes beyond presentation tips and deepens into how flexible we can be in our ability to communicate ideas.

Different presentations and different audiences shape the outcome of our efforts. Therefore, having a basic understanding of how to connect, raise awareness, and empathize with people can be key ingredients for your career as a presenter. A word of advice: success doesn’t happen overnight. It takes dedication and patience to build communication skills . Don’t condition your work to believe you will be ready “someday”; it’s best to practice and experience failure as part of the learning process.

professional development presentation skills

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ESL: Professional Presentation Skills

Course id: esl ypc2l.

Contact for course-related questions


In this course, you will learn how to give an effective professional presentation. You will learn about different types of presentations, and then select your own topic to research and present. You will learn how to design and use visual elements as well as other presentation skills to support your presentations.

Session Details

Upcoming sessions, sep 17, 2024 - oct 10, 2024 register by sep 13, 2024 atlanta, ga $250, items to purchase, previous sessions, who should attend.

This course is designed for speakers of english as an additional language at the high intermediate to advanced level of proficiency in English.

ESL learner wearing a headset

What You Will Learn

  • Create an outline of a professional presentation
  • Create effective visual elements to use during the presentation
  • Present a 10-minute professional presentation
  • Provide & receive constructive feedback
  • Develop increased confidence for presenting professionally
  • Describe different types of professional presentations
  • Identify and explain the skills needed to present successfully

ESL students working at desks in a classroom

How You Will Benefit

  • You will be able to give more effective presentations in professional settings.
  • You will develop your confidence in giving professional presentations.

Grow Your Professional Network

Taught by experts in the field.

An excellent experience in learning a second language because of methodology for academics and success. In addition, you gain knowledge about other cultures through personal sharing with other classmates.

Related Programs

English as a Second Language learners collaborating in classroom

Access (ADA)

The Georgia Tech Global Learning Center and Georgia Tech-Savannah campus is compliant under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Any individual who requires accommodation for participation in any course offered by GTPE should contact us  prior to the start of the course.

Courses that are part of certificate programs include a required assessment. Passing criteria is determined by the instructor and is provided to learners at the start of the course.

CEUs are awarded to participants who attend a minimum of 80% of the scheduled class time.

  • Citizenship

Georgia Tech’s Office of Research Security and Compliance requires citizenship information be maintained for those participating in most GTPE courses. Citizenship information is obtained directly from the learner at the time of registration and is maintained in the Georgia Tech Student System.

Code of Conduct

Learners enrolled in any of Georgia Tech Professional Education's programs are considered members of the Georgia Tech community and are expected to comply with all policies and procedures put forth by the Institute, including the  Student Code of Conduct  and Academic Honor Code .

Course Changes and Cancellations

Please refer to our  Terms and Conditions  for complete details on the policies for course changes and cancellations.

Data Collection and Storage

Participants in GTPE courses are required to complete an online profile that meets the requirements of Georgia Tech Research Security. Information collected is maintained in the Georgia Tech Student System. The following data elements are considered directory information and are collected from each participant as part of the registration and profile setup process:

  • Full legal name
  • Email address
  • Shipping address
  • Company name

This data is not published in Georgia Tech’s online directory system and therefore is not currently available to the general public. Learner information is used only as described in our Privacy Policy . GTPE data is not sold or provided to external entities.

Sensitive Data The following data elements, if in the Georgia Tech Student Systems, are considered sensitive information and are only available to Georgia Tech employees with a business need-to-know:

  • Georgia Tech ID
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  • Registration information
  • Class schedules
  • Attendance records
  • Academic history

At any time, you can remove your consent to marketing emails as well as request to delete your personal data. Visit our GTPE EU GDPR page for more information.

Inclement Weather

Classes and events being held at the Georgia Tech Global Learning Center in Atlanta or Georgia Tech-Savannah campus may be impacted by closures or delays due to inclement weather.

The Georgia Tech Global Learning Center will follow the guidelines of Georgia Tech main campus in Atlanta. Students, guests, and instructors should check the  Georgia Tech homepage  for information regarding university closings or delayed openings due to inclement weather. Please be advised that if campus is closed for any reasons, all classroom courses are also canceled.

Students, guests, and instructors attending classes and events at Georgia Tech-Savannah should check the  Georgia Tech-Savannah homepage  for information regarding closings or delayed openings due to inclement weather.

Program Completion

GTPE certificates of program completion consist of a prescribed number of required and elective courses offered and completed at Georgia Tech within a consecutive six-year period. Exceptions, such as requests for substitutions or credit for prior education, can be requested through the petition form . Exceptions cannot be guaranteed.

Please refer to our  Terms and Conditions  for complete details on the policy for refunds.

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Georgia Tech is a tobacco-free and smoke-free campus. The use of cigarettes, cigars, pipes, all forms of smokeless tobacco, and any other smoking devices that use tobacco are strictly prohibited. There are no designated smoking areas on campus.

Special Discounts

Courses that are eligible for special discounts will be noted accordingly on the course page. Only one coupon code can be entered during the checkout process and cannot be redeemed after checkout is complete. If you have already registered and forgot to use your coupon code, you can request an eligible refund . GTPE will cancel any transaction where a coupon was misused or ineligible. If you are unsure if you can use your coupon code, please check with the course administrator.

GTPE does not have a program for senior citizens. However, Georgia Tech offers a 62 or Older Program for Georgia residents who are 62 or older and are interested in taking for credit courses. This program does not pay for noncredit professional education courses. Visit the Georgia Tech Undergraduate Admissions page for more information on the undergraduate program and  Georgia Tech Graduate Admissions  page for more information on the graduate program.

Group Registrations

How do i register my group.

There is no special process or form to register your group. All interested learners must create and manage their own individual profiles, accounts, and registrations.  

  • Complete a GTPE profile .
  • Shop for a course .
  • Add the course(s) to the cart.*
  • Apply a group discount code (if applicable).
  • Provide an accepted payment method to complete the order (credit card, third party credit card holder, or one accepted payment document).  

*Carts will remain active for 14 days, but seats are not held until the transaction is complete.

How do I apply for a group discount?

Courses that offer group discounts will display the discount code on the course page. Your employees will use the code during the registration process and cart totals will adjust accordingly. Group discounts can only be used if three or more employees from the company attend the same course and only one coupon code can be use per shopping cart.

If you have already registered and forgot to use your coupon code, you can request an eligible refund .

What are the accepted payment documents if I am unable to pay by credit card?

Accepted payment documents must be uploaded during the registration process. They include:

  • A company purchase order (PO or SF182)
  • A letter of authorization on company letterhead
  • A corporate education application/voucher

What are the requirements for payment documents?

  • Name of company and physical address
  • Name of employee(s) approved for training
  • Document number (SF-182 documents: Section C, Box 4)
  • Billing address (SF-182 documents: Section C, Box 6)
  • Course title and course dates
  • Maximum disbursement amount (billing amount)
  • Expiration date (if applicable)
  • Authorized signature(s)
  • Payment terms less than or equal to net 30

The employee can print of a copy of their shopping cart to submit if required for payment documents. The cart will remain active for 14 days, but the seat will not held until registration and payment is complete.

Registrations cannot be processed without payment. If your employee is concerned about losing a seat in a class because of internal company processes, we suggest that they go ahead and register and pay with a personal or corporate credit card and seek reimbursement.

Who can I contact for assistance?

If you need assistance with your group registration or have questions on how to start the process, please feel free to contact us at 404-385-3501 or [email protected] .

Individual Registrations

Where are your courses held.

Most GTPE classroom courses are held at the Georgia Tech Global Learning Center (GLC). Any courses that are held elsewhere will be clearly marked on the course page. Get information on parking, directions, and transportation to the GLC.

Do you provide overnight guest rooms?

We do not provide overnight rooms. However, accommodations can be made at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center, adjacent to us. Additional hotels can be found within walking distance. Get more information on accommodations .

What if I need to transfer to another course?

Learners may transfer to another course of equal or greater cost if notification is made at least 10 business days prior to the original course start date. The course to which one transfers must already be scheduled.

When should I register for a course?

We recommend you register for courses as early as possible. Session details will indicate when there is less than five reamining seats in a particular session.

How can I make updates to my contact information?

Updates to your company, address, email, phone, and passwords can be made directly on the GTPE website. Name changes and citizenship changes must be submitted to the GTPE Registrar’s Office.

How can I register for a course?

  • Apply a special discount code (if applicable).

Do you accept walk-in registrations?

Walk-in registrations are accepted based on space availability but are not guaranteed for any courses.

Do you offer special discounts?

If available, discounts will display on the course page or will be automatically applied during the purchase process. Only one coupon code should be entered during the checkout process and will be validated by the system if applicable to items in your cart. If you have already registered and forgot to use your coupon code, you can request an eligible refund .

GTPE does not have a discount program for senior citizens. However, Georgia Tech offers a 62 or Older Program for Georgia residents who are 62 or older and are interested in taking for credit courses. This program does not pay for noncredit professional education courses. Visit the  Georgia Tech Undergraduate Admissions  page for more information on the undergraduate program and the  Georgia Tech Graduate Admissions  page for more information on the graduate program.

What professional education programs are eligible for veteran education benefits?

The following GTPE programs are eligible for veteran education benefits:

  • Construction Safety and Health Certificate Program (Atlanta campus courses only)
  • Project Management Certificate Program (Atlanta campus courses only)
  • Safety and Health Management Certificate Program (Atlanta campus courses only)

View the GTPE veteran’s GI Bill benefits checklist for more information.

Do you have a program for senior citizens?

GTPE does not have a program for senior citizens. However, Georgia Tech offers a 62 or Older Program for Georgia residents who are 62 or older and are interested in taking for credit courses. This program does not pay for noncredit professional education courses. Visit the Georgia Tech Undergraduate Admissions page for more information on the undergraduate program and the Georgia Tech Graduate Admissions page for more information on the graduate program.

What happens if my course is cancelled?

In the event of a cancellation, we will provide you with a full refund or transfer to an equivalent course.

Do I need a student visa to take a course?

Short courses (1-5 days) and conferences do not require a student visa. A B-2 Tourist Visa, along with a copy of your registration confirmation email and a copy of your completed web registration order page, should suffice.

If participation in a course is employment related, with immediate departure from the U.S., then a B-1 Temporary Business Visa will be required.

We encourage you to contact your U.S. Consulate or Embassy to determine visa eligibility. Full refunds will be provided to participants who are unable to obtain an entry visa and contact our office prior to the start of the course.

English as a Second Language students should contact the Language Institute for admission and visa requirements.

Do you provide letters of invitations or immigration documents for student visas?

We do not issue letters of invitation and cannot provide immigration documents for the issuance of a student visa. Full refunds will be provided to participants who are unable to obtain an entry visa and contact our office prior to the start of the course.

What payment methods do you accept?

Full payment is due at time of registration. Accepted payment methods include:

  • Credit cards
  • Purchase orders (company and government)
  • International wire payments *
  • Georgia Tech Workday Number (for Georgia Tech employees only)
  • Private loans *
  • GI Bill benefits * (Eligible Atlanta campus courses only. Off-campus and online courses are not eligible for VA Benefits.)
  • Company checks*

* Requires document upload or transaction verification during the checkout process.

What information is needed for a purchase order?

Purchase order documents must include the following:

  • Name of company’s financial contact and/or ap (accounts payable) email address

Please do not include social security numbers on purchase order documents.

How do I pay with a company check?

  • Make your check payable to “Georgia Institute of Technology” and include the order number and participant name on the face of the check.
  • Choose “Company Purchase Order” as the payment method at checkout and upload a copy of your check to your order.

GTPE Accounting Georgia Institute of Technology Global Learning Center 84 5th St. NW Atlanta, GA 30308-1031

When is a payment due for a course?

Full payment is due at the time of registration.

How do I make a payment?

General Public Payment is due at the time of purchase. Invoice payments must adhere to the Board of Regent’s business terms of net 30.

Georgia Tech Employees PeopleSoft payments are processed at the time of registration. Georgia Tech employees cannot use PCards for GTPE registration charges.

Are there additional fees for books, supplies, or materials?

Additional fees vary by course. Be sure to review the Requirements & Materials tab on the course page for more information.

My company has offered to pay for this course. Can you invoice them directly?

Yes. Here are the steps to receive an invoice:

  • Add the course(s) to the cart.
  • Print your cart and submit to your employer as the cost estimate.
  • Receive a copy of your company’s Purchase Order or payment approval document for GTPE to invoice against.
  • Return to your cart, proceed through checkout and upload our company PO in the final payment step.
  • The GTPE Business Office will generate an invoice 30 days prior to the start of the course at which point you are no longer eligible to withdraw with refund. Your company must:
  • Abide by the Georgia Tech and Board of Regent’s business terms of net 30.
  • Pay the full balance of a Georgia Tech invoice (there are no discounts for payments made early or on time).
  • Pay the invoice if the employee fails to withdraw during the refund period and does not attend the course.

What is your policy for refunding a credit card payment?

Credit card refunds are processed to the original credit card. The credit card issuer is responsible for refund credit balances to the cardholder.

Do you offer payment plans?

We do not offer payment plans for any of our services, conferences, or courses. Payment must be made in full at time of purchase.

Will participants be issued a 1098-T tax form for courses taken at GTPE?

GTPE cannot issue 1098-T tax forms. If you have a payment history need for tax purposes, we are happy to provide you with receipts of payment. Please submit your requires to [email protected] . Be sure to include your full legal name and Georgia Tech ID which can be found within your GTPE profile .

Certificates, Transcripts, and Credits

Are your ceus accredited.

GTPE’s use of CEU follows accepted criteria and guidelines established by the Georgia Board of Regents which follows international standards such as The International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).

Do you provide transcripts or certificates for Professional Development Hours or Professional Development Units?

GTPE does not issue transcripts or certificates with Professional Develop Hours (PDH) or Professional Development Units (PDU), but the crosswalk here is provided for reference.

One CEU = 10 contact hours of instruction One PDH = 1 contact hour of instruction (one CEU = 10 PDH) One PDU = 1 contact hour of instruction (one CEU = 10 PDU)

Will I receive a course completion certificate?

Upon successful completion of most GTPE courses (80% minimum attendance and a passing grade in courses that require an assessment), you may receive a certificate indicating the number of CEUs earned. Certificate issuance exceptions include courses with outstanding credentialing entities (i.e. OSHA or PADI).

How do I request a transcript of my CEUs?

CEUs earned are recorded in the attendee’s name and will appear on a GTPE transcript. All transcripts must be requested by the attendee via the transcript request form . Requests are typically processed within three business days.

How do I petition for a program certificate audit?

For an audit of your transcript for progress toward completion of a certificate, please complete the transcript request form . GTPE courses do not provide academic or degree credit. Georgia Tech academic or degree credit is only available to matriculated students taking courses that meet degree requirements.

What requirements are required by my state and association?

For specific information on state licensing or credit requirements, please contact your state licensing board. If you are seeking certification through a professional association, please review the specific requirements with that association.

Withdrawals, Substitutions, and Transfers

Course registration changes.

Please see our  Terms and Conditions  for complete details on our policies for course registration changes.


We enable employers to provide specialized, on-location training on their own timetables. Our world-renowned experts can create unique content that meets your employees' specific needs. We also have the ability to deliver courses via web conferencing or on-demand online videos. For 15 or more students, it is more cost-effective for us to come to you.

Flexible Schedule

Group training, customize content, on-site training, earn a certificate, want to learn more about this course.

Presentation Skills

Course description.

Delivering a persuasive and effective presentation is important for leadership and career success. Leaders must be able to build and sustain motivation, communicate a vision and provide a clear direction to their followers and team members. This course reviews basic concepts and techniques related to professional presentations. It presents a variety of tools that will help participants become more effective in planning and delivering successful presentations.

Why should you attend?

  • Plan, organize and present core elements of a presentation
  • Understand the verbal and non-verbal aspects of delivering a presentation
  • Deliver at 5-minute presentation to your class peers

UW–Madison Faculty and Staff

Christina Stefonek , Learning and Talent Development, Office of Human Resources

This course is part of the Fully Prepared to Lead program.

“I’ve been presenting for over twenty years and I still learned something from this class. Having constructive feedback from a large group of people really helps you understand that different people see (and hear) different things, and they all need to be catered to.” Tim , Instructional Staff, English/ Program in ESL, “The Presentation Skills for Leaders class offered a combination of practical tactics and a supportive environment for practicing both prepared and spontaneous oral presentations. I walked away from the experience feeling a level of comfort with spontaneous presentations that I hadn’t anticipated, and a better understanding of the nuances of effective speaking techniques.” Robyn , Department of Surgery, SMPH

Responses submitted to this form are used to enhance and improve the content of this website. Please contact your supervisor or your human resources office if you have questions about implementing policies, practices, or procedures.

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