10 Quick Tips for Presenting a Written Event

The anticipation of waiting to go present your written event to your judge can quite possibly be the most stressful moment of your life.

Do not freak out! You’ve prepared, practiced and perfected every bit of your presentation. If you’re still feeling a little anxious, read a few of these tips and then go rock your presentation!

  1. Take a deep breath. It may sound silly, but when you are out of breath you tend to talk faster and your words become unclear.
  2. Talk slowly. Your words always sound faster in your head, so please do both yourself and the judges a favor and take it slow. Let your words sink in.
  3. Take a seat if you have to! It is not uncommon to present sitting down. If you feel more comfortable then go for it.
  4. Believe in what you’re selling. Even if you start having doubts about whether your project is good or not, if you don’t believe in it, how can the judges?
  5. Smile! This is something you have worked hard for, so be proud of your project and show it.
  6. Confidence is good, but over confidence is not.
  7. Show the judges respect. They are volunteering their time to be there.
  8. Don’t scare yourself. Maybe you didn’t expect your event to have so many people, but there is nothing you can do about it. Also, just because that kid has an awesome suit and a fancy display board, doesn’t mean he’s going to win.
  9. Be yourself. You don’t need to impress the judges with elevated words. If you’re funny, be funny. If you aren’t funny, don’t stress yourself trying to make a joke. You have a short amount of time to present your project, so make the most of it by getting to the point.
  10. Whatever happens, happens. Don’t beat yourself up because you forgot to mention your target market. The judges will read your proposal.

It is not the end of the world if you mess up. Don’t forget that DECA is a fun and rewarding experience.  Whether you win or lose, you have a learned something, whether that is how to properly use a flip chart or how to give a firm handshake.

 If I had to give one last piece of advice, I would say please practice. It is important to know what you are going to say. If you really want to do well, you can’t wing it.

Rehearse your presentation in front of your advisor, friends and parents. It is important to get feedback on the tone and content of your presentation. Practice so much that you don’t even need to use note cards to present! This will help you easily maintain eye contact with the judges.

Remember that the work you put into it will equal the results that come out of it.

Follow Carolina on Twitter at @dcarolinas.  

Categories: Compete, HS Competitive Events, Presentation Prep, Strategies, Written