A great presentation takes more than preparation and verbal skills. According to the 2014 Toastmasters International World Champion, Dananjaya Hettiarachchi, body language is just as important.
Here are Dananjaya’s 4 best tips:
- Keep your body open. When you are nervous, you try to cover your “vital organs”. Avoid barriers between you and the audience (ex: arms crossed).
- Have your Palms open. It creates an openness that allows the audience to connect with the speaker better.
- Get comfortable with the stage. When you are comfortable on the stage, your body is freer to move about. Body language constricts if you feel foreign.
- Don’t touch the lectern. Ever! Keep your notes on it, but maintain a comfortable distance away so you can still gesture and use body language.