Skillset New Zealand Blog

Ideas to help your team develop personally and professionally.

You might not believe it until you try it out. Much of the annoyance and boredom in PowerPoint is created by the body language of the presenter.

Why standing side-on can make your presentation more engaging

When the presenter directly faces the audience his/her body is saying look at me.

So where is the audience supposed to look? At screen or presenter? That’s visual ambiguity and eyes glaze over immediately.

We’ve tried this out in scores of workshops… your PowerPoint will have much more impact when you stand side on, a subtle but powerful signal to the audience that they should look at the screen. End of ambiguity.

Want to get the move exactly right?

When you’ve got something on that screen, point your feet half way between the screen and the centre of the audience. That refinement takes care of any audience and screen arrangement.

When there’s nothing on the screen, point your feet back at the audience.


About Michael Brown

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Michael is a senior trainer with Skillset, based in Christchurch.

He is a leading authority on training in presentation and news media skills in New Zealand. He has special expertise in how to present emotionally-charged topics to challenging audiences. Michael has trained thousands of New Zealanders and worked with people who speak on behalf of some of the country's largest organisations.

Michael is a prolific author and his books on speaking and working with the media are in their fourth editions.

Speaking Easy: how to speak to your audiences with confidence and authority

Media Easy: how to handle the news media with confidence and authority

One of Michael's books is about his family's adventures sailing in the Pacific.

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