Microsoft Teams Call

From meetings and interviews to pub quizzes and gym classes, the world we know and how we interact with each other has changed significantly in the past year.

As many organisations have risen to the challenge of working from home, digital working is one aspect of the pandemic that is likely to be staying with us.

Whether you’re delivering a presentation, taking part in an online lecture or interview, or hosting a meeting, there are some considerations to presenting digitally. Sports broadcaster Andy Sixsmith gives his top five tips on getting it right.

  1. It’s all about the lighting

Find a place with enough constant natural light. The last thing you need in the middle of a presentation is to be blasted when sunlight hits and unable to see anything on your screen. If you struggle with natural light, consider using a ring light. These are a great way of having flattering light throughout the day, whatever your location.

  1. Ready for your close up?

You really want to avoid having someone staring up your nose or at your forehead throughout your digital session. Think about making the best use of the space around you. Ideally, you need to be in the centre of your screen with the same amount of space around all sides. This can be more difficult to judge if you’re using a tablet or phone so it might be useful to invest in a stand. Find somewhere comfortable, where you can sit for a length of time, to avoid fidgeting and moving out of your designated space.

  1. Consider your background

How many times have you been listening to an online lecture or presentation and the presenter’s head merges into their fake background? Or you find yourself reading the book titles on someone’s shelf behind them. These are the pitfalls of a distracting background. You end up watching the background rather than listening to the content of the session. Find a natural background that is plain with little chance of any activity happening behind you. The focus needs to be on you and what you are saying.

  1. Erm, what was I saying?

Whilst some people are confident to deliver without prompts, others need a few notes to help them along the way, and this is where digital comes into its own. Stick notes on, around and under your computer to remind you of the key themes you need to cover in your session or have them available on a second screen to glance at as you go along. Talking for a prolonged period of time can be hard going, so have a drink next to you and don’t be afraid to take a sip to loosen your vocal cords. 

  1. Sssshhhhh

Finally, give your housemates, family or friends the heads up that you are going to be taking part in a digital session. This will hopefully avoid any awkward or distracting situations and let you focus on delivering your session. If you are expecting a delivery, pop a note on the door to let the driver know where to leave your parcel and put any noisy pets in another room.

Most of all, enjoy yourself. Follow our tips and you’ll be a digital presenting whizz!