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Presenting is identified as one of Matter’s top soft skills that is linked to performance, development, and career success.
Matter’s definition of
Delivers effective, understandable, and engaging presentations to a variety of audiences.
Matter is based on an ontology of over
30 recommended skills.

What is Presenting?

An amazing idea can only go so far if you can’t present it in a manner that motivates and inspires others. This applies to all aspects of business, be it pitching, public speaking, demonstrations, sales, and presentations.

The best presentations don’t just deliver information, but inspires others to believe in the ideas and take action. Comparing presenters to teachers, William Arthur Ward shares, “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”

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Amazing Presenters You May Know

Amy Cuddy

You wouldn’t have known that Cuddy was nervous to step onto the TED stage to deliver her talk. Having survived a traumatic brain injury in a car accident, Cuddy was inspired to study the science of body language. In addition to telling her inspiring the audience, she also demonstrated how good presenting skills and great body posture can turn a personal story into the second-most-viewed TED Talk in history.

Shivani Siroya

The CEO of Tala, a smartphone lending startup, Siroya demonstrates her ability to present to different audiences. Using her presenting skills, she has raised venture capital and inspire Tala’s customers who often lack financial access to fair loans. In her TED Talk, she tied the feelings of comfort and financial security into our desire to be altruistic. Her talk shows the power of personal family stories in the emotionally-motivating cause behind her business.

Susan Cain

The American writer considers herself to be an extreme introvert. However, she doesn’t let that get in the way of being a good presenter. In her public talks and writing, Cain stresses the importance of introverts in creating and sharing new ideas. Rather than overlooking introverts for being quiet, she attests and proves that introverts can be “people who are very good at exchanging ideas, and advancing ideas.” In the right environment where they’re encouraged to participate, introverts often share and present the best ideas.

Why Presenting Is Important

Conveying Ideas

No leader can properly run a company, team, or project without being able to effectively communicate their ideas in a concise, clear, replicable manner.

Gaining a Consensus

No project can survive if people refuse to buy in to the project’s vision or goals. No initiative can succeed without commitment. To succeed in any endeavor, you need everyone on your team moving in the same direction.

Inspiring Others

Being able to evoke emotion in your presentation is essential, whether that is to energize, lead, get buy-in, or inspire.

What Presenting is NOT About


Good presenting skills come from a place of collective good, not from top-down demands and adamant directives.


Your goal in presenting should never be about insisting that your audience believe a certain way and filling their heads with ideas that they object to.


Good presentations are more than just the recitation of information on a screen. If something can just as easily be read as presented, just send an email.

Abilities That Lead To The Mastery of Presenting


Engaging your audience

The best presentations engage the audience. Come up with ways to make people feel like participants in your presentation. Pose questions. Ask for their points of view, or use them to help with your demonstration. People have short attention spans so be interactive throughout your presentation.


Keeping it simple

Try to keep your presentation straightforward and to the point. Fancy talks, loads of facts and figures and complicated sentences can overwhelm both you and your audience. They will fidget, zone out or go to sleep. If you keep it simple, your audience is more apt to grasp the message you are trying to transmit.


Making the presentation entertaining

Presentations should be entertaining and informative. Unlike an email or report, people expect some appeal to their emotions. Simply reciting dry facts without any passion or humor will make people less likely to hear your message.


Moving around and gesturing

Moving around can add energy and variety to your presentation. It makes you look more confident because people who are nervous are generally frozen in one position. However, intentionally moving and gesturing to engage your audience is not the same as pacing back and forth.


Speaking slowly

Nervous and inexperienced speakers tend to speak way too fast. Consciously slow your speech down and add pauses for emphasis.


Starting with a bang

Start your presentation with a compelling quote, a great story, a stunning statistic or even a provocative question. Your goal should be to get people’s attention. Avoid starting your presentation by introducing yourself or telling people you’re getting started.

Who can benefit from practicing Presenting?

Explore Complementary Skills to Presenting

Presenting shouldn’t be practiced in a vacuum. Improve your Presenting by exploring and developing these complementary skills.

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