• Antony Reeve-Crook

How to Improve your Remote Presentation Skills

The popularity of remote presentations has risen significantly as a result of Covid-19, but they remain relatively new to most people. As a result, not everyone has got to grip with the skills required to deliver an engaging presentation.

Nonetheless, if you can learn these skills, you will not only find that your presentations improve, but that you gain an edge over the competition.

Why Are Remote Presentation Skills Important? Many of the skills required for traditional, in-person presentations are unsuitable for remote presentations. These techniques rely on an audience being within a few feet of you. And this makes things very different. So, for example, with a local presentation, you could make direct eye contact with someone asking a question, this is impossible with a remote presentation. But this doesn't mean you can't be engaging with your audience. You just need to understand the best techniques and practices to communicate through this new medium.

Improving Your Remote Presentation Skills

Updating your existing presentation skills will take time. It's also going to be a process of trial and error, so don't expect to hit the ground running first time. What you can do, though, is gradually update and adapt your skills to become a master of remote presentations. And the best ways to start improving are:

  • Practice: it's true that practice makes perfect, and this is never truer than with remote presentations. You're going to need to feel comfortable talking into a camera, so it makes sense to get yourself acquainted with one. Likewise, you need to practice setting up your presentation equipment. After all, nothing kills a presentation dead like a blank screen and no audio. Therefore, you're going to want to rehearse your presentations and, ideally, do this with an audience member.

  • Record Yourself: a little bit of self-criticism can be a good thing when evaluating your remote presentation skills, and that's why it's a good idea to record your presentations. By recording, and then watching your presentations back, you will be able to pinpoint the moments which went well and the moments which failed to engage e.g. specific content or personal behaviour such as looking away from the camera. Make sure you record both rehearsals and the actual presentations to iron out all the creases.

  • Always Prepare: remote presentations rely on a lot more than you turning up to a venue, so you need to prepare thoroughly. Naturally, the most important aspect with a remote presentation is the technology. Accordingly, you will always want to test your equipment a few hours before a presentation. Ideally, if budgets allow, you should also have back up equipment on hand. And make sure you have a plan. You will want this out of view and at eye level, so a white board behind the camera is perfect.

  • Ask for Feedback: the best way to improve your remote presentation skills is by asking for and implementing feedback. This feedback can come via rehearsal sessions or actual presentations. Most attendees will be happy to share their thoughts and advise you on what worked and what didn't. With this knowledge in place, you can then work these suggestions into future presentations and ensure you are hitting all your targets.

For more tips and advice on delivering engaging remote presentations, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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