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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Lectern Etiquette: 13 of the Best Suggestions for Speeches

Ever get nervous or worry about what you look like when you are presenting? Have a big presentation, speech, or proposal coming up?

Don't worry! 

Just read these tips and you will pass with flying colors.

Here are some tips to maintain a professional look and nail the presentation.

1. Do not lean on the Lectern. It makes you look uncomfortable as a speaker. Stand straight up with good posture to maintain a professional look.

2. Eliminate any habits that take the attention of yourself (the speaker). Do not fiddle with a pen or any other object. Fiddling with something shows you are nervous. Be yourself and look confident.

3. Men, have your suit coat buttoned up when approaching the lectern. If your need to unbutton it while you are presenting that is fine. But, it is proper to have your suit coat buttoned up when you are announced.

4. Do not free walk or pace without a purpose. Move to demonstrate or emphasize a point. Moving without purpose will take away from you as a presenter and cause your audience to loose focus.

5. Thank the person who introduced you. It is proper, shows good manners, and will make a good first impression on your audience. It will make you look better and it will open a gait way to starting your speech.

6. Rehearse your speech. It makes you look confident, will insure that you will not stutter, and will help your nerves. You do not need to memorize your speech word for word. Just remember your key points and the order they are in.

7. Make eye contact. It will help direct attention to an individual and will give you cues to improve your speech. It will also personalize the presentation to everyone you make eye contact with.

8. Use gestures, looks, and sounds to elaborate a point. Volume and physical movement will place emphasis on a point in your speech. If a point in your speech is important raise the volume of your voice and throw in some hand gestures.

9. The closing line of your speech should not be thank you. It is not proper to end your presentation in "thank you". (See tip number 10 for how to close out a speech)

10. Use lines like I will now turn it over to (blank) to end your speech. It properly ends your speech and sounds professional. This will create a good last impression on your audience and will end the presentation in an original way.

11. Do not use a verbal or physical crutches. Habits such as hands in your pockets, jingling change, using words like "um" and "uh" can take away from your speech. It shows that your are nervous and do not know your speech well. It is more professional to leave these habits out.

12. Do not apologize for a mistake. It is unprofessional and is not good presenting etiquette. Most people will not even recognize if you mess up. Continue on in your presentation like nothing happened.

13. Be polite and courteous to your audience. It is implied to be kind to your audience, it will let them feel like you care about your presentation and them.

Here are some Lecterns that make your presentation even better:

The Executive Column Wood Lectern has a great professional look. With optional sound which allows your voice to be heard thought the room. It comes in four different wood finishes to fit your every need.

We also offer Acrylic Lecterns. These lecterns have a contemporary look and would look great in any room. They are lightweight so they can be moved from room to room with ease.

Related Links:
Blog: Professional Presentation Tips from Kay Meyer
Blog: Presentation Tips for the Size and Shape of Rooms