Sometimes when it comes to presentations, being the sole presenter can be easier since you know that you only have to rely on yourself; however, sometimes presentations tackled by 2-3 people can result in a much stronger and interesting presentation. Small group presentations require additional planning steps. Most of the steps might seem obvious, but many of them are often overlooked, which leads to a choppy presentation that your audience will dread until it is over.
Sometimes you will have to present for conferences or meetings with coworkers that you work closely with on a periodic basis. Hopefully you will already have a relationship with these people and understand some of their tendencies. There is also a chance that you might be presenting on a topic with someone whom you have never worked with before. The planning process will need to be more thorough in this case to make sure each person is on the same page and to avoid confusion.
You will want to prepare a short introduction of the team and its members, but you won’t go as in depth as during a presentation with one presenter. Either elect one person to make the entire introduction or have each person say a couple words about themselves and their role.
It is not a good suggestion to “wing it” in a group presentation because you and your partner(s) might all have different idea(s) on how the presentation should be carried out and you don’t want one person to dominate the whole presentation or have several people fighting for the microphone and interrupting each other. Make sure to meet up with your presentation group for several hours to discuss the content and listen to everyone’s input about the subject matter. Designate a role for each group member to write different parts of the presentation or collaborate cohesively and write the presentation during a group meeting. Send the completed presentation to everyone in the group to check over for spelling or transition issues.
Timing can make or break a group presentation. Rehearse the presentation several times to make sure each person knows which slides to speak about. It is important to know which slides are before your speaking parts so that you can transition smoothly from person to person without excessive hesitation. Consider creating a pattern of switching between presenters or breaking the presentation into 2-3 segments depending on the number of speakers and assign one person to the beginning, another to the middle, one to the end, etc.
Tackle the Q&A as a team
Plan ahead of time the particular subjects that your team members will answer in the question and answer period. Discuss ahead of time a certain cue for other group members to add to your comments if you feel you need to add more to the answer. Also be respectful of your group members and avoid cutting them off mid-comment.
It is important to pay attention the entire time. It will be very distracting to the audience if the group members waiting for their speaking part are not paying attention to the presentation. You don’t want to miss your cue to start talking so pay attention and be respectful to your other group members.
Be a team player
You have to count on your group members and they have to count on you so don’t let them down! Follow the plan and don’t monopolize the microphone. Give everyone their chance to speak and try your best to show group cohesion on stage. If another group member tries to monopolize the microphone, try to transition without making it obvious that you are interrupting your group member. If you all work together, then you should be able to effectively deliver your presentation.
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