So, you have answered some of the toughest interview questions imaginable and now they are looking for you to do a presentation as part of the interview process. It may come as a surprise to some. However, it shouldn’t really as it is an opportunity for your potential new employers to see your skills in action. You will be given the chance to showcase your public speaking skills, knowledge of a certain topic and ability to stay calm under pressure. This is a great chance to give you an edge over other candidates.
However, a poor presentation could have a profound impact on you getting the job. We have put together some tips to help you nail that interview presentation.
Preparing your presentation
An important thing to find out is who you’re going to be speaking to. This will have an impact on what you say and what way to pitch your presentation. Try and find out how many people will be present, their role in the company and their expertise. This information is relevant so you can have the right amount of material, pitching it at the correct level and making sure you have enough supporting materials to hand.
Get your structure together
Now that you have found out who you will be speaking in front of you can now begin to structure it. Having a clear structure put together will help you hit all the main points and ensuring that one clear message is being echoed throughout the presentation.
Make sure to have a powerful introduction and close, as these are the times when the audience will be most tuned in. Remember that this is still part of an interview so be sure to merge your skills and abilities into the presentation.
No matter how good you are at speaking in public, it is always good to have some aids to help you. Make some presentation slides using PowerPoint or Prezi to get your points across. Don’t heavily depend on your slides either. You want the interviewers to focus on what you are saying and not the design of the slides. Avoid looking down at the screen all the time for reminders. Be sure to talk to the audience and not your laptop.
Practice makes perfect
Once the presentation is put together by you then rehearse it. Make sure to practice it often, in front of friends or family and record yourself so as to listen back over it. Be sure to ask for feedback to see where you can improve. Keep a lookout for parts where you are stuttering saying “like” and “amm” a lot. Also, keep a lookout for fidgeting which will make the interviewers uncomfortable as a result. You don’t have to have your presentation learned off my heart. But you should go over it enough now that you are comfortable presenting it.
Being open to questions gives you the chance to showcase your knowledge of the subject in much more detail. Before the presentation starts, indicate that you will open the floor to any questions at the end. This is to avoid any interferences in your presentation.
Take your time answering the questions, be ready for awkward questions and don’t get into an argument match with anybody. If a conflict does arise it would be in your best interests to just agree to disagree. In this situation, you can deflect the question by inviting other people present to ask a question.
Delivery is key
Giving a brilliant presentation starts before you even enter that room. Make certain you have the interview basics down to a fine art. You can ensure this by dressing appropriately, be confident and enjoy it by having a smile on your face. Ensure to have a positive body language during your presentation. Always stand during a presentation as you speak. A good way to differentiate yourself from other candidates is to come out from behind the podium and exert your confidence and knowledge to the audience.
Be sure to make eye contact with different people throughout to draw them in and engage them in what you’re saying. Take deep breaths at certain stages to remain calm and it will also help you maintain a steady speech pace.
Presentations make people get very nervous but remember that nobody wants to see you struggle. They obviously figure you have something to offer so follow the steps outlined and show them exactly what you have to offer.