Presentation Skills for Engineers

Presentation Skills for Engineers

Engineers are not normally applauded for their presentation skills. Maybe that’s why they got into engineering. They don’t want to talk to people.

On the other hand do you want a person who designs bridges or rockets with a communication problem?

Perhaps more engineering schools should teach and emphasize presentation skills.

Kudos to The School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials at the University of Newcastle on Tyne for this webpage of links to articles about presentation skills.
Looks like some helpful links to good articles. Maybe we can expect better presentation skills from engineers.


As engineers, it is vitally important to be able to communicate your thoughts and ideas effectively, using a variety of tools and medium. You will need to develop and use this skill throughout your years in University; when you attend job interviews and especially when you start working in the big wide world. But, it is often said that engineers do not possess the ability to communicate well. Of course that is a load of b*&%@ks - not enough coaching and practise that's all!
This page contains links to material that is designed to improve your presentation skills. Most of the links are to the Web sites of business consultants, so they should know what they are talking about. If you are a member of the IChemE, you should have received a little booklet entitled "Communication Skills for Engineers and Scientists". Nevertheless, you may still find these links useful.

Read more about presentation skills for engineers.

George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

Presentation Skills for Engineers

Public Speaking : Tips for Speaking on Television, Videotape,

Great Public Speaking: Public Speaking : Tips for Television, Videotape,

Public Speaking Tips for Television and Video from Tom Antion

When you are speaking before television or video cameras, what tips should you keep in mind so you can look your best?

Tom Antion covers it nicely in this post on his blog about public speaking. He has listed some practical advice. When you are speaking before the camera, read these speaking tips from Tom Antion.

Enjoy the tips and “break a leg”

George Torok
Speech Coach for Executives

Power Presentations: Hold Attention

Hold the attention of your listeners

First be aware that you will never hold 100% of everyone’s attention. It is extremely difficult to hold 100% of the attention even when you are talking to one person. Because our brain processes information much faster than you can speak – we will often be starving for input. When we don’t receive enough input we daydream. So forget about holding the attention 100% of the time. Instead focus on grabbing their attention back. Sprinkle your presentation with attention grabbing techniques – especially just before the important parts.

How to grab attention

The first key to grabbing attention is “changes”. Change helps to fight boredom. Other keys are relevance and being real.

  • Change your pace of speaking – faster or slower
  • Deepen your voice
  • Change your posture
  • Ask a rhetorical question
  • Ask a question of the audience
  • Make a bold statement
  • Say “This is important.”
  • Use the word “you”
  • Do or say something unexpected
  • Tell a personal story
  • Admit a personal flaw or failure
  • Make them laugh
  • Issue a warning or reveal an unnoticed threat
  • Pause, look at the audience and smile
  • Speak to their specific needs and circumstance
  • Use the name of the group or individual audience members
George Torok
The Speech Coach for Executives

The above is an excerpt from "Secrets of Power Presentations" by Peter Urs Bender.

Association Speaker

Association Speaker

Do you need a powerful speaker for your next association conference or convention?

George Torok speaks regularily for association events.

Is George Torok the right speaker for your professional association?
You decide. Review the list of associations and comments from them. When you are ready contact him directly to discuss your specific speaker needs. 905-335-1997

Does George Torok understand association needs?
Yes. He has been an active member of many associations. He has served several on committees, project teams and on the association board. He has served on both local and national association boards. George has arranged special events for his association and he has selected, hired and managed speakers.

He often is a guest speaker for association meetings, conferences, workshops and national conventions. Many associations bring him back for another conference, seminar or special event. George Torok is the association professional speaker. For associations, George Torok is the combination of Mr Inside and Mr Outside. That means he brings both humble insight and brash perspective to your members.

What associations has George Torok helped as a professional speaker, seminar leader or consultant?

What articles are available for reprint in your association publications?

George Torok
Executive Speech Coach

Presentation: Argument

Presentation: Argument

If you have a strong case – clarity is the key

If you have a weak case – persuasion is the key

Are you clarifying or persuading?

How strong is your case? What do you need to do to get the message across?
George Torok

Presentation Disaster

Presentation Disaster

To ensure that your presentation is a success you must prepare for presentation disaster. It might sound strange – but a good way to prepare for success is to be prepared for disaster.

How can you ensure that your presentation will be a success? List the possible disasters then plan how you will deal with them. They might never happen but when they do – you will be prepared. And nothing showcases a leader more than taking charge during a disaster.

Presentation disasters can be both minor and major. Consider too that disaster is all a matter of perspective. When it is happening to you it feels like a disaster.

What are some of the presentation disasters for which you might be prepared?

You might feel nervous.
The fear of public speaking is fairly common. So if you experience it – don’t worry. Learn how to combat speech anxiety. Read more about dealing with speech anxiety in this article by John Robert Colombo.

You might verbally stumble on a word.
When we are numerous we can mispronounce a word. You can pause and say the word again. If you still fail in getting it right – find another word that means the same or smile at your audience and say, “You know what I mean.”

No one laughs at your funny line.
There are many possible causes. But don’t worry about it. Pause to let the message sink in. Smile to show that you enjoyed the funny line. As long as they got the message they don’t need to laugh out load. Consider that they might be laughing inside.

Your computer or projector dies.
This is common so you better be well prepared for this technology disaster. Have a backup system ready to go. And be prepared to present without the computer show. Remember the presentation is about your message – not your computer.

An audience member keeps interrupting you.
Depending on the circumstances you could say, “Thanks for your help, but I work alone,” Or you state, “Please hold your questions until I call for them.”

These are five common presentation disasters. If you want to be a successful presenter then don’t be surprised, instead be prepared to deal with these disasters. Do that and you will shine like a leader.

George Torok
Executive Speech Coach