Reflective accounts

Presentation skills

Presentations are integral to my role as a learning and development practitioner. The CPD article enabled me to develop my presentation skills and those of my colleagues. Many healthcare staff have up-to-date knowledge, experience and understanding of the requirements of the organisation, yet lack confidence in their presentation skills.

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The article enabled me to appreciate the reasons why nurses require presentation skills, and will help me to articulate this to nurses who do not see these skills as an essential in their role. We are required to articulate our ideas clearly as nurses, and be able to share best practice in a way that everyone can understand.

The CPD encouraged me to consider skills for a range of situations. The most effective way to develop presentation skills is through personal experience and practice. However, reflection and feedback from others is important; this should focus on delivery rather than content. Information on many generic presentation skills is available on the internet. However, it is the responsibility of the individual creating the presentation to determine its originality, clarity and focus.

The five effective principles for presentations in the CPD provided a logical sequence for creating a presentation. The principles made me reflect on what I am doing and why. They will be helpful when someone comes to me for advice on writing a presentation. The article outlined an underlying logic for all presentations: introduction, informing the audience about the presentation, the content, summarising the main points and questions. In future, I intend to ensure I plan my presentations holistically, leaving adequate time for questions, and encourage others to do so.

Patient stories

I had not previously considered that technology could add value to presentations. The level of skill required in the use of the presentation tool equates to the level of knowledge required about the information to be delivered. Both should be practised. I often use patient stories within my teaching but have not done this in my presentations. I plan to reflect on how I can bring the clinical environment to life in the presentation – using experiential learning. The sections provided in the article provide a framework for a realistic, grounded and clear presentation.

The CPD article provided a structured approach to use when assisting colleagues with their presentations. It will help to clarify the message I want to deliver in my presentations, to share best practice, and engage healthcare professionals on a wider scale.

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