Services - Interview technique training  Tips for a presentation

A presentation at an interview or selection process is different from one in other situations. Your audience is not only listening to you - spellbound, you hope. It is also assessing you against identified criteria. Nevertheless here are a few of the usual tips that still apply.

Know what the primary purpose of your presentation is.

    To inform? Educate? Challenge? Entertain? Persuade? Demonstrate how clever you are?!!

    Ask yourself: "what do I want the message to do"? It may be appropriate, because this is an interview, to spell out clearly to your audience, the interview panel, precisely what you have decided your purpose to be.

You are the symbol of all you represent as soon as you enter the room. What symbol / visual image represents all the qualities that you wish to have access to? People will remember who you are over what you say.

Respect the audience's mind. Show them the logic of your message. Build a clear structure and show it to them. Make sure they know where they are within that structure. No one should ever be saying to themselves: "I'm getting lost here".

Use silence and pauses to allow your message to sink in and to emphasise words.

Hold the tension when you pause - or throw the topic out with a question.

Practice paying attention to your pace, tone and pitch - which words you emphasise.

Repeat words or phrases to drive the point home. Repeat words or phrases to drive the point home.

Getting on with it
Start strong. Make your first sentence matter - don't ease yourself into it. Take your time. Time = Authority.

In 20 minutes, you can make only three main points. You probably only have 10 minutes. Don't barrage them with too much stuff. For each point find:
  • What is the IDEA you want the audience to remember?
  • What ACTION leads from that IDEA?
  • What does that ACHIEVE?
Remember the power of narrative, anecdote and imagery. What pictures do you want to put into the audience's minds? Use pictures and themes and not complex detail.

Prepare the final sentence. Is there an action you want the audience to take? What's the verb within the inspirational message?

You can keep the detail for a handout which you distribute at the end.

Good delivery is about clarifying and enhancing your message.

....And be generous with your eyes!

This is just the start. If you want more help with your interview technique, get in touch with us.

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