Top of the page

5 tips to help you present like a pro

Category: Tips and Advice

5 tips to help you present like a pro As you transition from the military to civilian employment, you may be asked to make a presentation as part of the selection process – particularly if you're attending an assessment centre. And even for those of you who have plenty of previous experience in presenting, making sure to prepare properly and that you understand the key principles of presenting is essential to ensuring you're able to deliver an engaging account of yourself, in what can be a high-pressure situation.

Here are 5 tips to help you deliver an impactful presentation:

1. Know your audience First thing’s first, you need to understand your audience's expectation and target your communication according to the level you’re pitching to. If this is the first phase of the interview process, why not use your presentation to provide initial insight into who you are and what your experiences include. If the presentation is part of an assessment centre for final selection however, you might want to focus more on highlighting your key strengths and transferable skills – really showcasing yourself as the right candidate for the role.

2. Define a clear structure Your presentation should always have a clearly defined structure, and deliver key messages in a way that your audience can follow. To do this, you’ll first want to provide an overview detailing what they can expect to learn. Then, deliver the main body of the presentation with a compelling proposition, remembering just how much you have to offer a civilian employer. And finally, summarise your key points, ask if they have any questions and offer handouts to all attendees. This final step will really help prospective employers remember you when reflecting back on all candidates.

3. Practise, practise, practise Once your presentation is structured and written, don’t forget to practise it regularly. Whether that’s in front of family or friends, with your CTP Career Consultant, or recording yourself using your phone. Ask for feedback and incorporate it into your edits. While you don’t have to memorise your presentation, you should run through it enough times so that you’re comfortable with it and can easily recall the key points you want to make. The more familiar you are with the content, the more confident you’ll appear on the day – and as the old saying goes, “confidence goes a long way”.

4. Present yourself well Delivering a great presentation starts with the basics. Dress smart, carry yourself with confidence and remember to smile – smiling is always a winner in interview situations. Body language is key, so be sure to stand tall and ensure nothing is in front of you as you give your presentation – making you the centre of attention. Speak confidently and clearly, and remember to make regular eye contact with each member of the audience. This will help draw each person in and guarantee that they’re engaged with you the entire time.

5. Deliver your key messages in a memorable way Finally, think about how you can grab the attention of your audience and aim to contextualise your points in a way that helps each audience member understand, relate to and remember key information. Whether you refer to a famous name - "I believe it was Sigmund Freud who once said..." - or utilise rhetorical questions - "Do you know what many older employees struggle with?"; connecting your presentation to the real world will help your audience retain your key points and remember you as being the best candidate for the role.

We’re here to support you as much as possible during your resettlement, and have made an abundance of tools and resources available to you through myCareerPath to help you along the way, including:

  • E-learning courses focused on developing your skills and networking strategies, such as creating a 60-second elevator pitch.
  • Career tools including ‘myCV’ and ‘CTPInterview’ where you can get real-time feedback on your CV and interview skills. 
  • And a wealth of video content designed to give you an insight into employers and industries, helping you understand how exactly you align to their roles.
Plus, if you’d like to practise your presentation prior to an interview or assessment centre, your CTP Career Consultant is just a phone-call away, and will always be happy to offer their support and guidance.