8 things never to say during your presentation

Many of these apologies and disclaimers tie in with the cardinal sins of presenting. Solid, thoughtful preparation is your best ally.

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Unfortunately, we see some specific failures over and over. In other words, the wrong things are repeated by those who aren’t thinking or don’t know any better.

Here are eight things that you have probably heard in many presentations, and which aren’t worth repeating:

“You probably can’t read this but…” OK, if we can’t read it, why are you showing it to us? Usually because you didn’t take time to create a legible slide or image. Unfortunately, this phrase is often followed by the presenter turning toward the screen and fumbling to make a point for the too full, too busy, ineffective slide. If you don’t think we will be able to see it, fix it.

“As you can clearly see…” Usually when people say this, we can’t “clearly see.” You have provided a chart or graph to make a valuable point, and you are intimately aware of the point, and how the slide shows it. We are seeing the slide for the first time. Help us “clearly see” by explaining your artwork so we can be moved by your point.

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