10 Helpful Tips for an Effective Presentation

Whether you are sharing about the ministry of Food for the Hungry with one person, or with fifty people, it is important to think through what you plan to say.

1. Make sure you take the time to prepare.
It is important to give yourself enough time to plan, practice and pray. Your confidence or lack of it will speak louder than the words you use.

2. Know your audience.
Each group is unique. Make sure to tailor your presentation with the audience in mind.

3. Speak from your heart.
Your heart and your motivation are more important than having all the right answers. People will see your sincerity before they hear your message. Be authentic. Express your passion.

4. Be a storyteller.
People want to hear stories—and they want to hear your story. Why do you want to share with this group? What touched you or inspired you to advocate for children?

5. Start with an interesting hook.
Grab the attention of the audience with an interesting “hook” and speak with confidence. You may want to tell why your subject relates to your audience. If a particular statistic or story made an impression on you, use it.

6. Use a variety of communication tools.
We all have relatively short attention spans. Employ several teaching methods, such as pictures, quotes and videos to reach the audience.

7. Be attentive to your voice and your body language.
Sometimes your body language communicates as much, or more, than the words you choose. Vary the speed and volume of your speech for effect. Pause to emphasize a point and try to avoid fillers such as “um” and “you know.” Strive intentionally to make eye contact and to maintain good posture. Gesture to emphasize important points.

8. Watch your time.
Respect others’ time. Learn to select your illustrations and activities very carefully, but most importantly, learn to “let go” of some of them for another presentation. It’s much better to end five minutes early than to end three minutes late. This will also allow more time for interaction and for people to ask questions.

9. Wrap up.
Clearly end your presentation. Restate your main points. Close with a call to action. For example, “I’ve left the last ten minutes for those of you with a deeper interest to speak with me about sponsoring a child today.  I will be happy to answer any more specific questions you have about Food for the Hungry.”

10. Be yourself.
Be yourself and rely on God’s Spirit. God has uniquely created you to be you. Don’t try to imitate someone else who is different from you. We can all learn from other presenters, but you must find your own unique style of communicating to an audience. Your God-given talents and abilities will be evident when you rely on the Holy Spirit.

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