Course Outcomes

This technical presentation skills course will:

  • Prepare scientists, engineers, and other technical professionals to deliver complex information to groups with and without the same technical know-how.
  • Provide participants with several techniques for analyzing their audiences.
  • Offer multiple options for structuring information in a clear and engaging manner.
  • Address common challenges people face when delivering presentations and suggest solutions for each.

Course Overview

Combating glazed eyes and confused looks is something those who present technical information sometimes experience. If an audience doesn’t understand techspeak or its members have an interest in hearing a big-picture message versus granular detail, presenters of technical information can find themselves in trouble.  Whether talking about bits, bytes, charts, graphs, or statistics, presenting technical information requires a special approach. This interactive presentation skills workshop is designed specifically for people who have to present technical information to both technical and non-technical audiences. During this course, participants will learn how to identify their audiences and adjust their message to groups with varying needs.

Program Objectives

At this technical presentation skills program’s conclusion, participants should be able to:

  • Recognize what makes technical presentations different from other presentations.
  • Identify the essential components of an effective technical presentation.
  • Describe an audience analysis and why it is a necessary step in a presentation.
  • Organize information in a clear and concise manner.
  • Create an attention-grabbing introduction.
  • Implement techniques for varying vocal tones and body language.
  • Point out the benefits and pitfalls of various visual-aid options and audience seating arrangements.
  • Begin implementing goals created during the session.

The following outline highlights some of the course’s key learning points. As part of your training program, we will modify content as needed to meet your business objectives. Upon request, we will provide you with a copy of the participant materials prior to the session(s).

Workshop Outline

One of These Is Not Like the Other: What Makes Technical Presentations Different

Presenting technical information comes with its own set of unique challenges. This program begins with an interactive discussion and analysis of the factors that make technical presentations difficult and what can be done to solve the problems that arise when presenting information to both technical and non-technical audiences. 

What It Looks Like: The Anatomy of a Successful Technical Presentation

The second part of this workshop looks at the components that comprise exceptional technical presentations: successful introductions, smooth and logical transitions, and compelling conclusions. Participants will dive in “head first” with a short practice presentation illustrating principles discussed. 

Let Me Tell You: Understanding Audience Differences

A big problem people who present technical information often face is targeting their discussion to the right level.  During this part of the program, we will spend time looking at different audience groups and what is important to each.  Next, participants will consider a technical message and determine how to adjust it to accommodate a wide range of needs.

“PowerPointers”: Creating Effective Visual Aids

Choosing and using visual aids is an integral part of technical presentations. This part of the program looks at the various options presenters can use to enhance their presentations.  In addition, we will look at best practices for working with PowerPoint, from designing effective slides to using them well.

Say Goodbye to “Um,” “Ah,” and “You Know.”: How to Get Past Common Roadblocks

Many people don’t enjoy giving formal presentations and standing in front of a crowd.  This discussion covers the reasons people feel uncomfortable and techniques to overcome various roadblocks.  By the end of this segment, participants should understand the steps they can take to project a positive image and connect with the people with whom they are speaking.  

Know-It-Alls, Talkers, and Bullies: Managing Hecklers

It is sometimes said that “there is one in every group.” A difficult person makes the presenter’s job a challenge at best. Learning how to manage audience members who don’t want to be there, have another agenda, or otherwise disrupt the flow of a presentation, is an essential skill of top speakers. This hands-on segment explores a host of techniques for handling difficult people and challenging situations. 

People Who Can, Do: Preparation and Practice

To demonstrate what they have learned, participants will give a short presentation. Then they will be videotaped for review and critiqued as part of this final exercise.

At the program’s conclusion, participants should understand how to target their message to a range of audiences and deliver information at an appropriate level.