Presentation Skills for Technical Professionals

Book description

Expert advice for technical professionals looking to improve their presentation skills

Your technical skills and professional expertise are evidence of your ability to accomplish difficult tasks. Strong presentation skills can help you further advance your career. The ability to present articulately to customers, management, peers and others can significantly enhance your credibility, clout, and professional status. Delivering presentations at work or professional events is an unbeatable way to gain a reputation as a valued employee and an expert in your field.

If you have ever tried to get out of giving a presentation because of nerves, or if you feel there is room for improvement in your presentation techniques, then Presentation Skills for Technical Professionals is for you.

Invaluable tips

This book gives you invaluable tips on how to make your presentation clear and accessible, how to interact with your audience and how to retain their interest while keeping your anxiety under control. Naomi Karten has used her vast experience — both positive and negative — on the front lines of public speaking to provide key advice (and many chuckles!) in this engrossing read for the technical professional.

By following the advice contained this book, you can take the stress out of the exercise and start delivering presentations that will engage your audience and make your ideas and arguments memorable.

Read this book and ...

  • Make your presentation easy to absorb. This book shows you how to structure your information and ideas to ensure you communicate your message to your audience.
  • Learn the pitfalls to avoid. However much time you have put into preparing the presentation, if you irritate your audience you can ruin all your hard work. This book reminds you of the bad habits, like mumbling or speaking in clichÉs, which you need to avoid if you want to make a good impression.
  • Use PowerPoint effectively. Presentations are often let down by slides which are dull or cluttered. Over-reliance on PowerPoint can mean that the slides become the focal point of the presentation, instead of helping to make what you are saying easier to grasp. This book shows you how to make intelligent use of PowerPoint. Presenting text in small chunks and using a readable type size are two simple ways to keep your audience listening.
  • Deliver successful presentations to managers and customers. Different audiences require different approaches. This book contains essential advice on how to deliver presentations both to high-ranking executives and to customers. Get to the point, and satisfy your superiors. Speak the customer's own language, and you are more likely to make the sale.

Read the foreword for this book

What others are saying about this book ...

'… It's an easy and entertaining read, and I learned a lot… There is lots more great information about all aspects of presenting in this book. I highly recommend it to everyone who ever has to make a presentation'
Lisa Crispin, co-author of "Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams

'If you're only going to read the first paragraph of this review, I will share the bottom line. If you get up in front of people, real or virtual, buy Presentation Skills for Technical Professionals: Achieving Excellence. Assuming you read at least one part of the book, you will have the tools to raise your game as a presenter ... Buy it, read it, use it as a reference.'
Tom Cagley, Editor at Software Process and Measurement Cast; Review taken from Podcast 117.

'Offers invaluable tips on how to make presentations clear and accessible. From topics such as concisely outlining the aspects of good and bad presentations to effectively interacting with the audience, the advice is practical and geared specifically to a technical professional.'
Pam Boiros, Books 24x7

'Presentation Skills for Technical Professionals by Naomi Karten is an expansive guide to honing the skills needed to wow an audience.'
Julian Goldsmith, CIO Magazine review - read the full review here

'A Thorough and Dynamic Book No Technical Professional Should Be Without… As a professional speaker and writer myself, I was amazed at the amount of detail, Naomi delivers with as much pizazz as necessary to grip this audience … She has given us all the nuances, answers all our questions, provides exceptions to the rules, all manner of presenting scenarios and situations, and does it in an entertaining way. It's the kind of book you will keep going back to just to feel good about a presentation you have coming up ...'
Jack Shaw, Amazon Review

'Great book! It discusses virtually all aspects and levels of the presentation process ... it describes the basics, discusses finding your voice, provides advice on speaker anxiety, and outlines the attributes of good and bad presentations. From a seasoned speaker's perspective like myself, I found a wonderful combination of quick tips, reminders of important presentation fundamentals, a "Presenter Survival Kit checklist" that I now keep with my presentation bag and great insights when presenting to management, customers, foreign audiences, and in other similar scenarios.'
Eric P. Bloom, Author of Manager Mechanics

'I just finished your book 'Presentation Skills for Technical Professionals' in course of my self-learning. Just wanted to thank you for the amazing experience and in depth coverage of all topics. The book kept me glued to my seat until I finished it. One of the most pleasurable and practically useful reading experiences in the recent past.'
Abhinav Mukherjee, Mphasis

Use this invaluable resource of tried and tested advice to engage your audiences and take the stress out of presenting ... Buy this book today!

Table of contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title
  3. Copyright
  4. Contents
  5. INTRODUCTION: Please Join Me in Welcoming
    1. What’s in it for you?
    2. Naomi as a formerly panicked speaker
    3. Thus, this book
    4. “But I’m not a performer”
    5. Introverts and extraverts as presenters
    6. If I can do it
    1. Chapter 1: Overview of the Basics
      1. Get started
      2. Develop the presentation
      3. Prepare for the presentation
      4. Give the presentation
      5. To recap
      6. In conclusion
    2. Chapter 2: Finding Your Voice
      1. Dare to aim high
      2. Be yourself
      3. Believe in yourself
      4. Recognize the imposter syndrome
      5. Understand the 3 Ps of presenting
      6. To recap
      7. In conclusion
    3. Chapter 3: Attributes of Good and Bad Presentations
      1. An example of a good and bad presentation
      2. The excellent, the mediocre, and the let-me-out-of-here
      3. Attributes of the worst presentations
      4. Attributes of the best presentations
      5. Learn from role models
      6. To recap
      7. In conclusion
    4. Chapter 4: Presentation Anxiety and How to Tame It
      1. Speak – don’t die!
      2. Draw comfort from high-level presenters
      3. Identify your fears
      4. Understand what really matters to the audience
      5. Don’t announce your nervousness, minimize it!
      6. To recap
      7. In conclusion
    1. Chapter 5: Key Steps in Shaping Your Presentation
      1. Get started – now!
      2. Establish your presentation goals
      3. Identify your audience
      4. Organize your ideas
      5. Incorporate supporting material
      6. Accommodate differences in learning style
      7. Tailor your material to fit the context
      8. Edit your presentation
      9. Create slides (if you’ll be using slides)
      10. Take a break
      11. To recap
      12. In conclusion
    2. Chapter 6: Openings and Closings
      1. How to deliver a strong opening
      2. How to deliver a strong closing
      3. To recap
      4. In conclusion
    3. Chapter 7: Interaction and the Adult Attention Span
      1. Types of interaction
      2. Other types of interaction
      3. Planning your interaction
      4. To recap
      5. In conclusion
    4. Chapter 8: The Powerful Impact of Stories
      1. How stories make facts interesting
      2. Why stories work
      3. How to craft a story
      4. Where to find stories for your presentations
      5. Stories as interaction
      6. Pointers for storytelling
      7. To recap
      8. In conclusion
    5. Chapter 9: Using (Without Misusing) PowerPoint
      1. PowerPoint: a solution – and a problem
      2. A few simple guidelines for preparing slides
      3. Supplement your presentations with handouts
      4. Seek alternatives to slide-driven presentations
      5. Additional resources
      6. To recap
      7. In conclusion
    1. Chapter 10: Logistical Preparations
      1. Dress to unstress
      2. Review your audio-visual requirements
      3. Confirm the location and date
      4. Meet your deadlines
      5. Be on site well ahead of time
      6. Be prepared to end on time
      7. Take care of yourself before your presentation
      8. Determine what you need to bring with you
      9. To recap
      10. In conclusion
    2. Chapter 11: Presenter Survival Kit
      1. To recap
      2. In conclusion
    3. Chapter 12: The Vital Role of Practice
      1. Why practice?
      2. How to practice
      3. To recap
      4. In conclusion
    1. Chapter 13: How to Make a Winning Impression
      1. Build rapport with the audience
      2. Open with confidence
      3. Speak in your own natural voice
      4. Make eye contact – and you contact
      5. Don’t become dependent on your notes
      6. Use a microphone
      7. Present standing
      8. Avoid the need to read
      9. Monitor your pace
      10. Use humor judiciously
      11. Observe your presentation as you give it
      12. To recap
      13. In conclusion
    2. Chapter 14: How Not to Annoy Your Audience
      1. Physical mannerisms
      2. Vocal mannerisms
      3. Clichés
      4. Speaking too fast
      5. Excessive apologies
      6. Treating the audience disrespectfully
      7. Tentativeness
      8. Mumbling
      9. To recap
      10. In conclusion
    3. Chapter 15: How to Handle Audience Questions
      1. Facing audience questions
      2. Preparing to answer questions
      3. Responding when you’re unsure of the answer
      4. Responding when you don’t know the answer
      5. To recap
      6. In conclusion
    4. Chapter 16: How to Manage a Difficult Audience
      1. When is a difficult audience not a difficult audience?
      2. How to cope with a challenging audience
      3. To recap
      4. In conclusion
    5. Chapter 17: How to Conquer Nervousness
      1. Practice deep breathing
      2. Do qigong exercises
      3. Eliminate stressors
      4. Use visual imagery
      5. Relive feelings of confidence
      6. Mentally rehearse
      7. Use positive affirmations
      8. Create anchors
      9. Put it all together for the presentation
      10. To recap
      11. In conclusion
    1. Chapter 18: Presenting to Management
      1. Tailor your presentation to their perspective
      2. Get to the point
      3. Incorporate an appropriate level of complexity
      4. Accommodate their communication preferences
      5. Be cautious about using humor
      6. Anticipate possible questions and objections
      7. Rehearse
      8. To recap
      9. In conclusion
    2. Chapter 19: Presenting to Customers
      1. Consider your customers’ perspective
      2. Guard against potentially ambiguous terminology
      3. Show that you understand their business
      4. Watch your attitude
      5. Allow ample time for questions
      6. Be careful how you sell
      7. Remember that appearances count
      8. To recap
      9. In conclusion
    3. Chapter 20: Presenting to Your Team
      1. Benefits of presenting to your team
      2. Presentation anxiety, team-style
      3. Presentations to on-site teams
      4. Presentations to geographically dispersed teams
      5. To recap
      6. In conclusion
    4. Chapter 21: Presenting to a Foreign Audience
      1. Language and cultural differences
      2. Cultural differences that create misunderstanding
      3. Parlez-vous français?
      4. When the presenter is a non-native speaker
      5. To recap
      6. In conclusion
    5. Chapter 22: Presenting at Conferences
      1. Identify conferences where you might present
      2. Submit a proposal to present
      3. Meet your deadlines
      4. Be on site early
      5. Be careful setting up
      6. Chat with audience members
      7. Don’t be distracted by people who walk out
      8. Respond to questions astutely
      9. Behave professionally at all times
      10. Thank the conference director
      11. To recap
      12. In conclusion
    6. Chapter 23: Presenting Webinars
      1. Webinar positives and negatives
      2. How to prepare a successful webinar
      3. How to deliver a successful webinar
      4. To recap
      5. In conclusion
    7. Chapter 24: Presenting with Co-Presenters
      1. Co-presenting: a team effort
      2. Prerequisites to co-presenting
      3. Succeeding with presentation partners
      4. To recap
      5. In conclusion
  12. Bibliography
  13. ITG Resources

Product information

  • Title: Presentation Skills for Technical Professionals
  • Author(s): Naomi Karten
  • Release date: September 2010
  • Publisher(s): IT Governance Publishing
  • ISBN: 9781849281553