In life things don’t always go to plan. Presentations are no different. Inevitably, at some point, you will deliver a bad presentation. It’s never enjoyable but it you can make it valuable. Let me expand on that. It is valuable provided you take the time to reflect upon what happened and dissect what actually happened.
What went went wrong?
Rarely does everything go wrong. Take the time to isolate exactly what didn’t work. Think about everything that happened during the presentation, your preparation, and how the audience reacted. Was your preparation the cause of the problem? Did the room setup cause issues because some of your audience couldn’t see the PowerPoint presentation? Was a joke you said misunderstood?
There are a myriad of question you can ask yourself. Ultimately you need to isolate the reasons the your presentation didn’t have the intended impact.
What will you do differently next time?
Now you have identified the causes you can identify the solutions for next time you deliver a presentation. It could be as simple as arriving at the meeting room earlier to ensure that all the seats can see the screen through to taking more time in your preparation to ensure you fully understand the audiences need.
Identify a strategy or technique that you will apply to your next Presentation.
What did go well?
Finally, after you have dissected what went wrong and what you will do differently next time around take some time to reflect on what did work. Invariably for every one thing that doesn’t work you will find three things that did. Don’t allow the bad experiences taint your view of your skills. Remind yourself that you can do this, you are able to deliver presentations successfully, and you do have the skills to speak in front of groups of people.
Use any dark cloud that hangs over your presentations to your advantage – find the silver lining and grow.