Let’s face it, nobody really likes to sit through a presentation at work, which makes it even harder to keep folks' attention when you’re the one giving it. Well, it turns out there are a few things you could be unconsciously doing that’s sabotaging your ability to keep folks interested, and a few simple words could be the culprit.
Experts note that you will quickly ruin a presentation if you give anyone the idea that being there is a waste of time, and there are certain phrases you could be using that will immediately sabotage just that.
- “Sorry/I’m Tired/Jet-Lagged/Hung Over” – There’s no reason to share this in a presentation. What do you think it will get you, sympathy? Basically it’s like telling people there’s a reason this presentation is going to be terrible, so you’re basically preparing them to be disappointed. Regardless of how you feel, you shouldn’t use your physical condition as an excuse.
- “Sorry, I didn’t have time to prepare” – Not only does this immediately lower your audience’s expectations, but it shows them a lack of respect, since there is always at least some time to prepare. If you were indeed given insufficient time to be ready, be smart with your time, focusing on the most important things like your opening and closing, since it’s important to hook your audience in, and to end on a high note.
- “Oops, there’s a mistake on this slide” – First off, you really should double and triple check things in order to avoid this happening at all costs. Even get someone else to do a once over with fresh eyes. If you still wind up with an error, don’t mention it or draw attention to it, unless it’s a glaring and major error. It could be something only you recognize, so don’t acknowledge it if you don’t have to. And if you have to point out something that may have slipped through, don’t use the word “error” or “mistake.” Instead just state what it should say and send them a corrected copy later.
Source: Fast Company