How Much Time Does It Take You to Present?

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

One of the most common mistakes that presenters make is to go over their time limit.  Why?

Many people are not aware of how long it takes to deliver their presentation – and they tend to underestimate how much time it takes to get through their material.

The only way to be sure of how much time it will take to present your presentation is to practice it and time it.  Practice means saying the words out loud rather than just glancing at your notes and flipping through your slides.  Set a timer and note how long each slide or section takes. 

Practice a few times and you’ll have a good average of how long it will take.  You’re not memorizing your presentation word for word – you are becoming comfortable enough with the material that you can say it several different ways.

And in your planning, you also have to allow time for changes; for example, leave time for questions if that’s part of the program.  And consider that you may speak faster – or slower – when you present in front of a live audience. 

If you practice and time your presentation a few times, you will be less likely to underestimate how much time it will take to present.

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