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Presentation Skills Training London CourseTraining courses in Presentation Skills

Presentation Skills Training London Course

Face to face / Virtual public schedule & onsite training. Restaurant lunch included at STL venues.

This 1 day work-shop is part of a range of Professional and Management courses including Project Management, Negotiation Skills and Time Management.

Training manual sample

Below are some extracts from our Presentation Skills manual.

Presentation Skills

Performing a Needs Analysis

A needs analysis measures what skills employees have -- and what they need.  It indicates how to deliver the right training at the right time. The results answer the following questions:

  1. What is the audience with the problem or need for change?
  2. What tasks and subtasks does an expert perform to complete a work process?
  3. What gaps exist between experts, average and poor performers of a work process?
  4. How do we translate the needs into objectives to promote a strong learning outcome?

The method can be simple; observation, careful note-taking, and asking questions work.

Interview key stakeholders and listen to their concerns about the problem
Define who needs help to overcome the problem
Identify and describe the audience and the work

Observe the work being done by recognized experts
Take careful notes and ask questions where needed
Document the proper performance of the work tasks

Observe other workers doing the tasks. 
Compare results with the performance of experts. 
Document identified skill gaps.

Develop a complete list of tasks for performing the work completely and correctly


Researching, Writing, and Editing


The needs analysis has likely produced much of the supporting content required to build the program. However, if information gaps exist, return to your expert performers (also termed subject matter experts) and ask questions.


If you’re using a word processor, create a template so your material is consistent from the beginning. Assign a preliminary time length to each module based on the total time available for the presentation. (You’ll validate it later.) When writing, aim for brevity. The more you say, the less the audience remembers.

Make sure to validate your finalized content before you move on to editing.


As you edit, write for the ear, not for the eyes. Make sure sentences are twenty words or less and only convey one thought. Use simple, familiar words. Make sure that you have provided the definitions of any terms important to the learning experience. Try to spice up your module titles.


Basic Criteria to Consider

A training presentation may use any combination of delivery methods as long as the net result is to achieve learning outcomes -- and consider organizational requirements and constraints. The four-step process below will help you select the best training delivery options to meet your training needs.

  1. List all possible learning methodologies that could be used to achieve the session objectives
  2. Identify possible delivery options for the learning methodologies
  3. Identify the organisational, presenter, facility, and resource parameters and their impact on the delivery options.
  4. Recommend your delivery strategies.


Tips and Tricks

Use the following suggestions to enhance the benefit of your PowerPoint presentation.

Overall Appearance

·      Display only one major concept on each slide

·      Use short phrases or bullet points rather than paragraphs

·      Limit each line of text to no more than 7-8 words

·      Allow only 7-8 lines of text per slide

·      Use images sparingly; one or two per slide

·      Leave a good amount of blank space in your presentation

·      Create a title for each slide

·      Use effects, transitions animation and sound very sparingly.

Fonts and Colour

·      Use simple sans serif fonts such as Helvetica or Arial for readability

·      Select a point size of 32 or larger for titles and 20 points for body text

·      Use colours that work well together, such as yellow or white on a dark blue background.

·      Check the readability and visibility of your fonts and colour choices with the lighting in the room in which you will present.


·      Make sure to match your slides to the purpose of the presentation

·      Develop a template and stick to it for a consistent look and feel


Presentation Process - Verbal Communication Skills

 Listening and Hearing: They Aren’t the Same Thing
Hearing is the act of perceiving sound by the ear. Assuming an individual is not hearing-impaired, hearing simply happens. Listening, however, is something that one consciously chooses to do. Listening requires concentration so that the brain processes meaning from words and sentences. Listening leads to learning.
This is not always an easy task.  The normal adult rate of speech is 100-150 words per minute, but the brain can think at a rate of 400-500 words per minute, leaving extra time for daydreaming, or anticipating the speaker’s or the recipient’s next words.

 Asking Questions
Three types of questions are useful in a presentation; closed questions, clarifying questions, and open questions.

Open Questions
Open questions stimulate thinking and discussion or responses including opinions or feelings.  They pass control of the conversation to the respondent. Leading words in open questions include: Why, what, or how.  A statement such as “describe the characteristics of the car” is really an open question.  Examples of open questions include:

·      Describe the style of the leader of the meeting.

·      How do you open the emergency exit door on this aircraft?

Asking questions is both an art and a science.  Your questions in a presentation should be:

·      Clear and concise, covering a single issue

·      Reasonable, based on what participants are expected to know

·      Challenging, to provoke thought

·      Honest and relevant, eliciting logical answers

In addition to selecting the right type of question, there are two additional skills that aid the presenter during the questioning process.

Clarifying Questions
A clarifying question helps to remove ambiguity, elicits additional detail, and guides you as you answer a question.  Below are some examples:

·      I can tell you are really concerned about this. Let me see if I can repeat to you your main concerns so we can start to think about what to do in this situation.”

·      What sort of savings are you looking to achieve?

Closed Questions
Closed questions usually require a one-word answer, and shut off discussion.  Closed questions provide facts, allow the questioner to maintain control of the conversation, and are easy to answer. Typical leading words are: Is, can, how many, or does.    Below are several examples of closed questions:

·      Who will lead the meeting?

·      Do you know how to open the emergency exit door on this aircraft?

To evoke an answer, your question should use phrasing that is:

·      Clear and concise, covering a single issue

·      Reasonable, based on what participants are expected to know

·      Challenging, to provoke thought

·      Honest and relevant, directing participants to logical answers.


Presentation mechanics - Visual aids: Flip Charts

Information written on flip charts enhances the learning process. During a presentation, the use of flip charts serves to inform participants, record information, and focus attention on a topic. They represent a simple, low-cost learning aid -- with no requirements for power or technology, and no worries about burned-out bulbs or darkened rooms. Flip charts add versatility to a presentation and allow the presenter to use creativity to enhance the learning process.

Required Tools
At a minimum, you will need a flip chart easel, several pads of flip chart paper, a few sets of coloured markers, and masking tape for posting the results of exercises. Also handy are several packages of sticky notes to flag specific pages, and a straight edge. If you plan to cover up information that you will reveal at a given time during the presentation, then have some pre-cut paper available, sized appropriately for the text.

If you are bringing pre-written charts to an off-site presentation, you will also need some type of container to protect the pages.

The Advantages of Pre-Writing
There are many good reasons to pre-write your flipchart content.

You are in control of the material for your presentation – design, organization, and appearance. This also helps reduce nervousness.

Your material has a specific “look and feel” that is not necessarily easy to achieve when prepared during a session.

With your charts ready ahead of the presentation, the time during a presentation is used for learning activities, not writing, which keeps your back to the participants.


·      Always print; never use handwriting

·      Consider using a straight edge to stem tendency to write “downhill”

·      If you are using charts in a sequence, number them.

Using Colours Appropriately
Good use of colour can make the difference in the dynamics of a presentation -- and participants’ acceptance of the content. Conversely, the effect of a great chart can suffer from the poor use of colour. According to the Optical Society of America, blue, black and green offer the greatest visibility, and blue is the most pleasing colour. Avoid purple, brown, pink and yellow for any type of general printing.

The use of two or three colour combinations can be very effective. Here are several rules.

·      Red and orange should only be used as accent colours for bullets, underlines, or arrows, or for key words when everything else is in black or blue

·      Avoid orange and blue together

·      Never use yellow.

When creating your charts, take some time to think about the colours you are using, and how they can enhance the understanding of your topic.


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