Public Speaking

When Giving a Presentation, Never Do This

Former Managing Editor
3 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As someone who used to be terrified of public speaking, I can say it: Giving a presentation can make you feel like you've got 1,000 daggers pointed at you. One wrong word and you're toast.

Under those circumstances, it's often tempting to offer an excuse. If you tell the audience you're not as prepared as you'd like to be, for instance, perhaps they won't judge you as harshly.

The reality is the audience wants you to succeed. Pointing out any real or imagined weaknesses you might have actually works against you, says Jacqueline Whitmore, etiquette coach and founder of The Protocol School of Palm Beach.

Whitmore says statements like "I'm feeling really tired today," or "I'm just getting over a cold," don't help your case. "You never want to tell the audience what your flaws are… You want to make it seem like you have been prepared for this event for a long, long time," she says.

Check out the video for more advice on preparing for a presentation.

Related: 6 Things You Should Never Say During a Speech

More from Entrepreneur

Kathleen, Founder and CEO of Grayce & Co, a media and marketing consultancy, can help you develop a brand strategy, build marketing campaigns and learn how to balance work and life.
Book Your Session

For a limited time only, get this bundle of Entrepreneur PressĀ® titles for less than $30 (60% OFF) on our bookstore when you use "LEAP" at checkout.
Buy Now

Are paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.
Get Your Quote Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.