Leadership and Management: 6 Barriers to Effective Presentation

If you are managing or leading a team, chances are you will be required to make a presentation from time to time. While some relish giving a presentation, for others just the mere fact that they might have to fills them with fear. 

So what are 6 common barriers that could be getting in the way of you successfully presenting?

Barrier 1: Believing it has got to be slick

We watch great presenters and it all seems so slick, word perfect, no ums or ahs, stutters or stammers- and we think that’s the way we need to be.  Of course we all want to get better and better.  At the same time if we view each presentation as a learning opportunity, we don’t get stuck in the barrier of believing we need to be super slick.

Barrier 2: Thinking you are being judged

Sometimes we come across people who seem to get hung up on the fact that everyone will pass judgement.  Yes they will have their own views about you as presenter.  By the same token rather than judging they are more likely to be relieved that it is you rather than them giving the presentation.

Barrier 3: You have it or you don’t

What do I mean?  Ever heard people say that people are born presenters.  Now I don’t know about you but I have yet to hear about a midwife announcing to the proud parents of a newborn that the baby has the presentation gene.  Like every other skill, presentation skills can be developed.

Barrier 4: Thinking you can’t be nervous

Even the best presenters are nervous.  It is what you do with those nerves that makes the difference.  You can either channel them as a source of adrenalin or something that keeps you stuck.  You get to choose.

Barrier 5: Making ridiculous comparisons

You might not be the next world speaking champion or as good as the President or Prime Minister.  Aiming high is great but don’t add extra pressure by making unrealistic comparisons.

Barrier 6: Thinking you can wing it

The foundations of any successful presentation are in the planning and preparation. Get this right and you are well on your way to a successful presentation.  Trouble is many folks view this as dull and don’t allocate the time they should do.  Don’t compromise a successful presentation by trying to wing it.

Bottom Line – With practise anyone can become a competent presenter.  So what’s stopping you from becoming an effective presenter?

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

Leave a Comment:

LouiseBJ says 3 August 2009

Good post Duncan. Re. your point number 5, while the current US President may be a good speaker, his predecessor certainly wasn’t. Just another way of saying that being a ‘naturally good’ speaker isn’t a pre-requisite for high office!

Duncan Brodie says 5 August 2009

Hi Louise

Great point. For high office whether it be in an organisation or government a range of qualities are essential.

There is little point in telling a great story if no one is willing to get behind you and help you deliver the results.

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