Frau fürchtet sich vor der Präsentation

The thrill of success: Master your nervousness in business presentations with these 10 tips.

You can make a positive impression with a convincing business presentation. It sounds so simple – if it weren’t for the nervousness that throws a spanner in the works. Here are 10 proven tips to help you handle your own nervousness with confidence.

1. preparation is the key

Preparation is always forgotten, underestimated or not prioritized enough. Solid preparation gives you confidence and reduces nervousness. Rehearse your presentation thoroughly and prepare for possible questions.

2. develop a positive attitude

Zig Ziglar, an American motivational and sales trainer, coined a term that has been with me since I was a teenager: “stinking thinking.” Instead, look at the presentation as an opportunity to showcase your knowledge and skills. Consider it a privilege to present your knowledge to the audience. After all, not everyone gets this chance. Therefore, try to turn your nervousness into excitement and energy.

3. breathe deeply in and out

This is what I learned years ago in Aikido training: pay attention to your breath. This also applies to business presentations. Focus on your breathing before the presentation. Slow, deep breaths help relieve stress and calm the body.

4. visualize the success

Do as the successful athletes do: vividly imagine yourself performing with confidence and poise. This mental image helps to increase self-confidence and reduce nervousness to a tolerable level.

5. keep eye contact

During the presentation, seek eye contact with the friendly looking audience. This creates a connection and diverts your attention from the nervousness.

6. speak consciously

Make sure your pronunciation is clear and distinct. Take your time when speaking and avoid speaking too fast. A calm and controlled voice has a professional and reassuring effect on you and the audience.

7. taking breaks helps against nervousness

Deliberately build pauses into your presentation to collect yourself and relax. Use these moments to take a deep breath and organize your thoughts. Take a sip of water. You will automatically breathe properly before and after drinking.

8. interact with the audience

Ask questions of the audience or ask for feedback. This creates an interactive atmosphere and diverts attention away from you and your own nervousness.

9. posture and gestures

Stand tall and confident to have a positive aura. Use your hands and gestures to support your words. An open body posture looks self-confident. Body and mind work in sync. When you put your body in a confident posture, you immediately feel more confident. Try it out right away. Take a bent posture once, then an upright one. Can you feel the difference?

10. accept nervousness as normal

Remember that nervousness is something normal that many people experience before and during presentations. Accept and embrace your nervousness instead of fighting it. After all, a presentation is not a walk in the park.

Book recommendation

For more in-depth tips on dealing with nervousness, such as the current grip, I recommend the following book:

Reto B. Rüegger, Thomas Skipwith: The Worm Must Taste the Fish. Scoring as a speaker with Power Presentations

If I can support you for a speech or presentation, please let me know (+41 41 630 39 90).

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