Tips on Presenting and Creating Presentations
New to doing presentations? Don't worry – it's a piece of cake! Yes, speaking to an audience can seem scary, but it's really no big deal. The audience is not there to judge you, they're there to learn. They want to hear what you have to say, so if you follow a few guidelines, you'll do a great job. Here are a few tips on presenting and speaking to an audience: Whether it's 10 people, 100 people, or 100,000 people these rules apply. And if you can get in front of 100,000 people to talk about openSUSE we want to hear about it!
Keep your slides simple and designed to focus the audience's attention on you, not the slides. Make eye contact with everyone in the room. Speak slowly, and be confident! Make your presentation a story: Think of your talk not as an information dump, but a story you're telling the audience. Be prepared! No one likes a speaker who fumbles with their notes, or doesn't really know the material at hand. You should know your topic well before you get up in front of an audience. Practice: Walk through your presentation a few times before you give it. In real time. Practice your timing, your jokes (have jokes!) and be able to give your presentation without reading your slides instead of focusing on the audience. Be confident: You're the expert, and the audience will appreciate what you have to say. Come in prepared and be confident! Be yourself: This is a very friendly crowd. Just be yourself, and your presentation will be great.
Rule number one: The audience came to see you and not your slides. Let's repeat that: The audience is not there for your slides, they're there for the material that you present and to see you.
This doesn't mean they're more interested in you, personally, than the topic. It means that they came to see a person speak and help them understand your topic better.
What they don't want is to watch you read slides at them. Look at the audience, not your slides, and don't make the slides a phone book!
Slides should be:
Simple A supplement to your talk: Not the focus of the talk Brief: In most cases, only a few words will suffice Clear and easy to read
A few online resources that might help when designing your slides:
18 Tips for Killer Presentations Presentation Zen Sample presentation slides SlideShare SlideShare has lots of presentations of all kinds. It's sort of a Flickr for presentations. The presentations are of varying quality, and many are better examples of what not to do than what to do. But you may get some good ideas from the site. A guide to successful FOSS conference presentations