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presentation skills

 
#1 presentation skills
25/08/2006 11:06

judi to deleted (#0)

I'm not the same guy who posted the "nerdy" consulting article but have a similar problem. I landed a consultancy job but I'm quite reserved and didn't have the chance to practice presentation skills much at school and uni. I (obviously) kept quiet about this during the interview and have to do a number of presentations in a couple of weeks time... My peers seem to be well ahead of me.

Can confidence and presentation skills be learned? If so, what is the best way to go about it? If anyone has been through this themselves, can they recommend a good book or technique or something?

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#2 RE: presentation skills
25/08/2006 12:32

martin to judi (#1)

of course it can be learned - the whole consulting industry is based on projecting credibility. Think about it - brand-spanking-new graduates have to appear competent and professional to senior client managers, when what they really want is to be in a pub garden.

Take a deep breath, believe what you're telling them and make sure you know it better than they do - when you're speaking, you're the expert.

I once knew the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Every single morning of his long and illustrious career, he would be dropped at the office by his chauffeur, take a deep breath and say to himself "Showtime" before he went in. He changed from being the 'family man' to the CEO instantly. It was remarkable.

Good luck

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#3 RE: presenting and threading skills
06/09/2006 19:04

anon to martin (#2)

Judi - it is not unheard of for top actresses to still experience nerves before they go on stage. You can certainly learn to overcome these though, so far as the audience is concerned.

It is not always simply about confidence though, it is usually also about content. A bit of both helps alot and it is encouraging to see that we can be sufficiently challenged by this in our careers to keep wanting to get better at it. It was certainly interesting to read the CEO story, and one of the reasons I jumped into this thread head first.

Mr Sikder Afzal you appear to have more confidence currently in the internet than myself. My hope would be that you posted your own CV here. It seems unfair if this was done without your consent, particularly given your experience and the quality of the text.

If you did post it, can I please ask why you take such a direct approach? Is it connected to the themes of the thread in a way that is not very clear to me ? Do you favour this over a highly specific/low number of applications approach?

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#4 RE: skills we never knew we had
07/09/2006 11:30

anon to anon (#3)

Wonderful. Please could you also remove my message now as well, as the context has changed to some extent? Not to worry too much if you are pushed for time, but it would make even more sense.

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#5 RE: presentation skills
07/09/2006 19:10

njo to judi (#1)

I can understand why you kept quiet about this at interview, but now you have the job you should confess to your lack of experience in this area. Almost everyone has something to learn in terms of improving their presentation skills, so it isn't a huge weakness you should be scared of hiding. Most firms offer good presentation skills courses either internally or externally - attending a good course can be invaluable, especially if you can find one which videos your technique for you to watch and learn from (painful but useful!).

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#6 RE: presentation skills
30/09/2006 11:11

judi to njo (#5)

Hey, presentations have been going well so far. Thanks for the advice! The key thing for me has been to overpractice to the point where it all comes very naturally and also to concentate on the content rather than worry about delivery. I got a round of applause for one of them. Hopefully when i get better at this, I won't have to put in so much practice though!

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