Here are 10 ways to ensure your voice sounds interesting when presenting:

1. Your starting point should always be your posture and your breathing. A poor posture will prevent you from breathing effectively and without sufficient breath your voice will have no power and will lose its ability to vary its pace, tone and volume.

2. Create opportunities for you to breathe deeply as often as you can in your presentation. Certainly, you should take some deep breaths at the beginning of your presentation (as you gain eye contact with your audience and smile at them).

3. Breathe also when:

* You ask a question

* Emphasise a point

* You pause and want to allow the audience to absorb what you have just said

* As you tell a story or anecdote or relate a conversation

* As a new visual is revealed

4. Think about what you are saying and get your voice to support the words. For example if you say something is interesting, sound interesting. If something is of grave importance, sound serious. This can only come through rehearsal.

5. Use repetition of words to create powerful effects e.g., ‘we could have done xyz…but we didn’t. We could have done abc…but we didn’t. What we did was…’.

6. Tell a story of anecdote. Make it relevant to the audience and your subject matter, give it a hero or main character, give that character a name, don’t give all the details – let the audience imaging some of the details and gaps themselves. There must be a point to the story.

7. Ask a question. Your voice will go up at the end, you give your audience something to think about, and you keep your listeners on their toes.

8. Get your audience to imagine a scenario. Paint a verbal picture for them. Try to involve then using as many senses a possible through words. This is a wonderfully powerful technique – providing you don’t waffle and you have rehearsed this ‘imagine’ scene – you don’t need to be word perfect, just vivid.

9. By relating a conversation, your voice will change and be much more interesting to your visitors.

10. Make your language colourful by:

* Use examples and comparisons – especially with figures or complex processes

* Bring the facts to life by telling a story of how it works in practise or what it will mean for the listener, or how it has helped someone else

* Relate a conversation instead of simply stating facts

* Use language that the audience will understand but make it as conversational as possible – use idioms, similes, metaphors, day-to-day language

* Gentle humor through words, stories, anecdotes, turn of phrases and eye contact.

Which one are you going to try the next time you present?

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