Olivia Mitchell

Presentation tips

Welcome, I’m Olivia Mitchell and this website is full of presentation tips to help you in your next presentation.

Start by downloading my free guide "How to make an effective PowerPoint Presentation". The Guide will take you through my streamlined process for creating an effective presentation. It's full of presentation tips to help you structure your talk and create PowerPoint slides.

You'll also receive my free email course giving you new presentation tips every week.

Then explore the many articles. I've divided the articles into five main categories:

How to make an effective presentation

The content of your presentation, what you say, is the most important. Start planning by crafting a key message, then choose a structure and use stories, examples and statistics to back-up what you're saying. Finally work out the presentation introduction.

How to create powerpoint slides

Powerpoint slides have the ability to enhance or sabotage your content. Unfortunately, the way most people use PowerPoint they sabotage themselves. Find out why bullet-points don't work and how you can do a make-over of a bullet-point slide.

How to give an effective presentation

You're probably quite good at having a one-on-one conversation with somebody. But somehow those skills desert you when you get up to speak in front of a group. I'll show you how to use those conversational skills to connect with your audience - I call it conversational presenting. Find out about body language, projecting your voice and using eye contact.

How to overcome the fear of public speaking

It's normal to be nervous and having some nervousness is useful. But you're probably thinking it would be good to have some way of reducing your anxiety about public speaking. I'll explain how you can use proven psychological techniques to reduce your fear of public speaking.

How to manage the audience

Being able to interact with the audience and handle tricky audience situations can make your speech much more effective. You can find out about how to keep audience attention, encourage questions from the audience and how to handle a heckler.

I do hope you enjoy my site and find useful presentation tips. To find out how I got over my fear of public speaking and became a presentation trainer, click here Olivia Mitchell. You can contact me by clicking here.

Does your audience want to fast-forward you?

August 6, 2013
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Maybe I’ve got spoiled by my TV set-top box but, in so many of the presentations I’ve attended recently, I would love to have a remote-control with a fast-forward button! I’m sure you know what I mean – you really want to hear the useful and valuable information that the speaker has to offer. But [...]

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7 Tips to Ensure You’re Understood when Speaking to a Foreign Audience

March 6, 2012
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This is a guest post by Leon Potgieter. “Americans who travel abroad for the first time are often shocked to discover that, despite all the progress that has been made in the last 30 years, many foreign people still speak in foreign languages.” – Dave Barry The phrase “tough crowd” takes on an entirely new [...]

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Find a Presentation Designer Here

January 26, 2012
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Are you looking for a presentation designer? I’ve been asked so many times if I could recommend a presentation designer that I’ve decided to publish a list of PowerPoint and Keynote slide design companies and freelancers. I asked each presentation designer to talk about their approach to presentation design and to give me an example [...]

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6 Presentation Links Worth Clicking

January 15, 2012
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When I was in the States last year, I met up with Nancy Duarte… and she interviewed me. She’s now written up the interview on her blog. Find out more about my story and why I’m passionate about helping people be better presenters – and particularly helping people overcome the fear of public speaking. Here’s [...]

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The sobering truth about what an audience remembers

September 28, 2011
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Last week I spent three awesome days at the Presentation Summit. In this post, I want to explore what audience members remember from a presentation, using the first three keynotes of the conference as my examples. I asked as many people as I could what they remembered from each of these keynotes. This was an [...]

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The two types of presenter: which are you?

August 26, 2011

This is a post written by Tony Burns, my partner and co-trainer. There are two types of people in the world – those who divide the world into two types of people, and those who don’t. I’m one of the former. I find models useful – they show distinctions that can help explain and predict [...]

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The 5-step cure for boring body language

June 16, 2011

Could your body language be more expressive? Do you inhibit your natural body language when you’re public speaking because of your self-consciousness? Or maybe you’ve been told (by a well-meaning but misguided person) that you wave your arms around too much? As a result you’ve shut down your natural gestures and become stiff and boring. [...]

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What to do when you’re losing your audience

June 7, 2011

Your audience’s attention will fade over time unless you take specific steps to keep them engaged. Here’s a graph showing the attention of university students during a 50 minute lecture – where the lecturer lost his audience (Reference: Hartley J and Davies I “Note taking: A critical review” Programmed Learning and Educational technology, 1978,15, 207-224). [...]

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The 5 Bad Habits of Experienced Speakers

June 2, 2011
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I’ve been through a long journey (25 years) of developing as a speaker. I started off shy, nervous and tentative. Now I’m a high energy, animated speaker and I love connecting, laughing, riffing with an audience. But along the way I’ve picked up some bad habits. Attending Doug Stevenson’s Story Theater Retreat helped me identify [...]

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How to turn your story into a movie

May 24, 2011
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When Tony and I were in America we attended a Story Theater Retreat with professional speaker Doug Stevenson. This is a two-and-a-half-day workshop focusing on crafting and refining just one story, but at the same time teaching you a process that you can apply to all of your stories. Each retreat has just four participants [...]

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