Give Powerful Presentations With Power Platform Skills


Public speaking is frequently noted as one fear placed right up there with fear of heights, death, blood, and insects. It’s no wonder many of us shy away from opportunities to share our knowledge and experience.

However, there comes a time when we must speak in front of our peers, and move an idea, product or technique into action, and you’ll want to have the skills to do so.

Whether giving a formal presentation or contributing to an impromptu session, the way that you position yourself, move, and speak to the audience will either enhance or detract from your message. By developing your “platform skills” – or, the skills you use while on stage (typically a raised platform) – you can ensure your presentation is both consistent and effective.

Let’s look at three ways you can start working on your platform skills right now:

Position: The way in which you stand significantly impacts your message.

  • Standing erect and proud communicates authority and confidence, while slouching gives a sense of uncertainty.
  • If you are using visual aids, stand to your audience’s left of the visual props, especially with American audiences. Americans read left to right, so they will be inclined to look at you before they look at your visuals.
  • Avoid using a lectern, if possible. Otherwise, be sure not to grab or lean on it.

Movement: The right movements can lend depth and interest to your presentation.

  • Circulating around the room projects a more personable and confident aura, increases audience attentiveness, and helps you walk off your nervousness.
  • Avoid jerky movements that make you appear nervous or anxious. You can alleviate nervous actions with modest and purposeful hand motions.
  • Rapid pacing can be distracting to your audience, not to mention annoying. If you must pace, do it casually, and keep your hands out of your pockets.

Speech: The manner in which you speak affects the outcome of your speech.

  • Ending sentences on a “down” note instills confidence from your audience. When you end “up”, it signals a question and uncertainty.
  • Keep your words clear and accurate. Avoid putting your hand in front of your mouth, as blocking your mouth muffles the words.
  • Eye contact also speaks. Make a connection with everyone in the room at least once, and avoid looking out over the tops of their heads.

By positioning, moving and speaking with confidence, you will not only keep your audience engaged; you will inspire them to do what you want them to do. In the process, you’ll begin to overcome your fears and establish yourself as a credible expert.

To learn more about what it takes to deliver presentations with power, visit or sign up for Sylvia Henderson’s “Hear Me Roar: First Impressions Make Presentations Last” seminars by making your request at the “Contact Us” tab on the website home page.