Factors affecting presentation
1) Audience Analysis: If the speaker has analyzed the audience in a proper way before presentation, his presentation will be more effective. On the other hand, poor or improper audience analysis leads to ineffective presentation. The style of the presentation is largely dependent upon the type and size of the audience. If audi-ence is large, presentation should be more formal whereas informal presentation can work in small audience.
2) Communication Environment: Communication environment affects the effectiveness of the presentations. Much of the audience notices the physical things surrounding the speaker, the stage, lighting arrangement, background, etc. Proper arrangement of these things can enhance the impact of the presentation. If there is noise in the surrounding environment, it detracts the audience from listening and consequently leaves unhealthy messages.
3) Personal Appearance: Personal appearance of the speaker has great impact on the audience. Well dressed up person can deliver good presentation. Therefore, the speaker should wear neat and clean clothes and take time to check his appearance just before starting presentation.
4) Use of Visuals: Visuals can enhance the professional image of the presentation. Different research studies demonstrate that presenters using latest visual techniques are perceived as better prepared, more persuasive, more credible and more interesting than speakers who do not use visuals. But visuals work only if the technology on which they depend works well. Therefore, presenter should check the equipment in advance before presenting.
5) Opening and Closing of Presentation: The beginning and closing of a presentation are the positions of emphasis. Those presenters who can open the presentation with interesting remarks which are likely to create more interest and enthusiasm for listening the presentation. On the other hand, presenters with poor opening are likely to leave the audience bored. Similarly, the ending of the presentation has profound impact on the audience. Endings, with vivid and positive pictures are more likely to have profound impact on the audience.
6) Organization of Presentation: Clarity in presentation is essential that comes with proper organization of the information. Organizing the information in a proper manner can make the message more understandable, keep the audience happy and boost the image of the speaker. Proper organization of presentation enhances the effectiveness of the presentation. On the other hand, improper organization of the presentation will not influence the audience. Improper organization of presentation is reflected as follows:
i) Taking a long time to get to the point.
ii) Inclusion of irrelevant material.
iii) Leaving out necessary information.
iv) Mixing up of ideas.
To overcome these problems, presentation can be organized in one of the five standard patterns:
i) Chronological: It starts with past, moves to the present and ends by looking ahead.
ii) Problem-Causes-Solution:It explains the symptoms of the problem, identifies its causes and suggests the remedial measures.
iii) Excluding Alternatives:It shows the symptoms of the problem, suggests possible solutions, explains the reasons why these don’t work and ends the discussion with a solution that will work.
iv) Pros-Cons: It explains the advantages and disadvantages of problem(s).
v) 1-2-3: It discusses three aspects of a topic: introduction, body and conclusion.
7) Language and Words: The quality of presentation is affected by the language and words. To make the audience understand the message, the speaker has to talk in the language known to the audience. To enhance the impact of presentation, he should choose the catchy words that appeal to the heart and emotions of the audience. If the language spoken by presentator is different from audience’s language, and words used are stereotyped, it is likely to have least impact on the audience.
8) Quality of Voice: Quality of voice of the presenter affects the effectiveness of the presentation. Voice modu-lation is likely to have greater impact upon the audience whereas monotonous voice will bore the audience.
9) Body Language: The effectiveness of the presentation is also affected by the body language of the speaker. A speaker having eye contact with audience is likely to impress more than a speaker reading out the hand outs. A speaker who looked more at the audience is judged as better informed, more experienced, more honest and friendliest than a speaker who delivers the speech with less eye contact. With eye contact members of audience feel that speaker is talking to them.
Similarly, confidently moving speakers are likely to have more impact than nervous speakers. To calm one’s nervousness, one should be well-prepared, take several deep breaths, relax one’s muscles, pause and look at the audience and use body energy in strong gestures and movement.
10) Answering Questions: The effectiveness of presentation is also affected by presenter’s skill in handling questions asked at the end of presentation. A speaker who answers the audience’s questions and handles hostile questions with tact is likely to influence the audience more. On the other hand, a speaker who answers rudely will leave negative impact upon the audience.