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Must have presentation skills for project managers in 2022

A big part of the project management mindset is presentation skills. Presentation skills for project managers may not always be about standing in front of an audience and conveying your ideas. 

It can center around stakeholder meetings, employee meetings, project meetings, events or even an exhibition where you have to present yourself to promising visitors.

Yet all these gatherings have a common requirement: A compressed brief over a particular topic. And usually it’s a project manager’s responsibility to showcase the information in an appealing way. So that the audience can easily get involved in the discussion.

Here is a list of presentation skills project managers must have:

Smartly Deliver Your Speech

Delivering a presentation is all about communicating your ideas to the audience. Depending on the goal of the presentation, it could be a  gamble too.

It could go really well or be ineffective-if not bad. 

So the first thing is, you need to make sure your body is relaxed. 

How would you stand when you are going to explain an important topic or concept? If you watch Apple founder Steve Job’s  body language during a presentation, you will notice how relaxed he is during his session. 

But what most people will not tell you is how much planning and practice goes into this. 

It is NORMAL to feel anxious in front of any audience. 

That is why you must practice beforehand, plan what your audience needs to know in a 10-15 minute presentation.

This is more likely to make you feel relaxed and calm.

During your presentation delivery, you need to show you are calm and confident.

You have to show energy and confidence-even if you do not, otherwise your audience  will have other competitors to switch too.

No, they may not walk out of the meeting. But they WILL pull out their smartphone and watch something more appealing. 

This is not uncommon. Meetings which are drowsy commonly experience this behavior. 

Social Media like Instagram and Tik Tok have made people hungry for content rich unique presentations.

So be sure to practice a few times before you deliver that presentation. 

Remember, even university lecturers practice ahead of their classes, particularly lecturers whose videos are made public on Youtube. 

The same goes for content creators on Youtube. 

Don’t believe me? 

Watch bloopers released by these creators. They stutter and blurt out lines that were not supposed to be said. Scripts have to be reviewed again. Videos have to be re-shot again. 

You see, this is not uncommon. 

These content creators, whether they are YouTubers or lecturers or priests- practice their delivery before the big day. 

For a  presentation delivery, plan and practice your presentation so you will feel confident to deliver.

So pay attention to how you deliver your presentation. Deliver it in front of a camera and play it to see for yourselves.

Eye Contact with the Audience

A lot of factors lead to being persuasive.

As you speak, maintain eye-contact with your audience.  Avoid the dreaded phrase “I think” and “we believe”. 

Keep your charisma subtle by NOT overusing buzzwords such as Artificial Intelligence, Automation and Machine Learning.

Quote statistics from research to prove that your product will solve the problem stated by researchers.Use plethora of examples to prove your point. 

As you speak, ensure your talk is clear and easy to understand.

If you need to convey something that may not be favorable to your audience-speed up your presentation. After that, relax to your normal pace.

It is your platform.You can improvise. Maintain eye-contact with your audience as you speak. Keep your goal in mind. If your audience asks questions that are not part of your goal-remind your audience politely unless you can argue towards your goal.

The more persuasive you are, the better will be your sales and potential clients.

Storytelling with a Sprinkle of Humor 

Have you ever watched standup comedians such as Ellen Degenerous? 
Comedians just talk. 

Yet they are excellent  in manipulating their audience- all because  of their sense of humor.  

The topics they speak on are cleverly conveyed to the audience through humor, jokes and references to movies, cultures and society norms. 

Of course you are not supposed to mimic a comedian entirely but being light hearted in your presentation will keep your audience’s spirits high.

When I started out as an intern, my former project manager always had a story or incident that was related to our work. 

He would narrate these stories if the meetings exceeded its time-limit or if the meeting was in the evening when work-energy is usually at its limits.

The brief 5-10 minutes of story-telling could be amusing or inspiring.

Some of these stories truly had a positive impact on me and gave me more insight about the work of the company.

So be personal with your audience-with story-telling, inspiring quotes and humor. 

If they do not have the potential to be your customer, then they will at least leave  the session with a positive mindset of your company.

Provide Visual Presentation with Authentic Data

As a project manager you won’t be just talking-you will be presenting data WITH proof and visuals.

As mentioned before, your presentation may be for a variety of audience.

What if your audience are your employees? Or your company’s board of directors?

In such a scenario, your presentation is most likely going to be about work, tasks, and projects.

There are times when you have to show task lists or the progress of your work.

It is not practical to calculate the time and build animated diagrams of individual employee’s work progress using powerpoint slides

This is where the PowerPoint Slides is at its limit. 

You should not take too long to build a slide especially the ones that include projects and tasks. The projects and tasks should also be presented visually and  accurately. Visual elements of your slides should be brief, clear and visually effective to relate to.

But building powerpoint slides with these variables will be impractical. 

And for this reason we recommend you to use the WP Project Manager which can be used by managers, directors, entrepreneurs and even researchers.

Provide Visual Presentation with Authentic Data

It is a WordPress based  project manager tool for organising, monitoring and controlling projects. You can create  Gantt Charts simply by creating tasks and present this visually to your result orientated audience. 

Kanban Boards, calendar, time tracker and a user friendly dashboard is also another set of modules the WP Project Manager has for presentation and daily activities. 

You can use the WP Project Manager for creating invoices, organising employees, task assignment, manage teams, and even hold discussions.

If your presentation is all about your project-then simply using the WP project manager will be enough.

Check out the WP Project Manager to make  your project management more simple.

Keep the Presentation Short & to the Point

When presenting, do keep note of time. People lose interest quickly if your presentation is too long-especially if it makes your audience yawn loudly. This is a very  important presentation skill for project managers. 

Leverage Your Stress Management Capability

Sometimes your audience may be verbally aggressive or skeptical-particularly in a Q&A session.

You will be on your own to handle this. 

To Tackle  such a situation it is best to be calm, composed and listen to the other party. 

The more thorough you are with the topic, the better will you be able to emphasise your view- yet in a  respectable manner.

Which brings us to our next most important skill-Research

Research Deeply about the Topic

Research as much as you can on the topic you will present.

How much information  should you convey? How to explain a complex topic to an audience? Are there different views with regards to your  topic?

Research on topics that are relevant to your goals. That way your research will not take forever to end. 

Trying to prove your point depends on how well you  have studied your presentation topic. It also is the basis for your data visualization. How much information needs to be on your slide will be understood only after you have understood your topic  as well as your time and type of audience.

Actively Engage the Audience

You will not be only delivering and presenting-you will be interacting with  your audience to answer questions. You may even have to interact BEFORE your presentation starts. This is helpful as it gives you a hint of your audience’s ideas, their mindset, their opinions, their perception etc.

Prepare yourself and Design the Presentation

Prepare yourself and Design the Presentation

Not all of the mentioned skills need to be implemented. Some skills can be left out. For example, getting to know your audience can be left out sometimes although it is recommended. Actually it largely depends on your topic, audience, place, time and others.

There are great blogs at on how to prepare for a presentation. In this blog, we focused only on the skills that a project manager needs for a successful presentation.

As a Project manager you won’t always be entertaining your audience. On most occasions, you will need to show proof of your project’ s progress using Gantt Charts, Kanban Boards, Invoices and more.

So don’t forget to check out the WP Project Manager before you prepare for the big day. Provide Visual Presentation with Authentic Data

Author Bio: This post is written by Arshadina. She is working @weDevs as a Technical Writer and Video Editor. Arshadina loves Blogging and Creating Videos on Tech and WordPress.

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