Employers are thinking outside of the box to ensure that they hire the best of the best. Often, you’ll be asked to make a presentation to show off your confidence and capabilities. Various interview presentation topics can ensure you know just how to highlight your knowledge, talent, and skills.
The Purpose of an Interview Presentation
Across all private companies, the average turnover rate in 2019 was 4%. Some industries and some positions are higher than others.
High turnover is problematic for a number of reasons. Hiring and training are both expensive and time-consuming. The goal is to hire employees who are ready to slide right into the role they were hired for.
This is why interview presentations are being used more and more frequently. Companies use them to put communication skills to the test. You may be asked to prepare a presentation or present a blind one.
Marketing positions may require a presentation to market a particular product. A C-level position may require a strategic outlook for the industry.
Regardless of whether the interview presentation topics are defined or not, the purpose is the same. They want to see various skills portrayed:
- Understanding of the subject
- Ability to engage with the audience
- Ability to stay organized
- Ability to communicate
- Organization level
Essentially, they want someone who is able to stand out against all of the other candidates.
You can stand out by choosing an interesting presentation topic or a unique way to present it. You’ll also want to show that you meet all of the core competencies of the job description.
Popular Interview Presentation Topics
There are plenty of interview presentation topics that you can choose from. However, it’s important to consider the kind of job you’re applying for, the target audience that you’re presenting the material for, and what you wish to prove during the presentation.
Below are some of the most popular topics that are capable of showcasing your talent.
1. New Technology
Talk about the emerging technology within your industry. Talk about specific examples as well as the ways that it is both a help and a hindrance. It’s important to show that you’re up on the latest technologies as the company you’re interviewing for may soon be moving to it.
Discuss how you feel about the technology but try to stay positive. Especially if you don’t know how the company feels about it, you don’t want to establish friction.
2. An Emerging Trend
Discuss an emerging trend within your industry. It can be helpful to share some specific statistics so that you can identify that you’re familiar with doing research.
Explain why you think the trend is a good one or a bad one. Open it up to a Q&A so that you can address questions and concerns about the trend. It can be a great way to demonstrate that you’re connected to the industry.
3. A Solution to a Common Problem
Many companies are looking for problem solvers. The interview presentation topics are your chance to prove that you are capable of solving their problems.
Tell the story of the problem that consumers (or businesses) are having. Then, go into detail as to how you plan to solve the problem. Use graphics or props to drive your point home.
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4. A Published Paper
Present a paper that you have published – or a paper that someone else has published. Give credit where it is due.
If you presented the paper, it shows that you have been published because of your ideas, research, or concepts. If it was written by another, it demonstrates that you are well-read.
Talk about why the paper is important. Be sure to highlight the main points in a compelling way.
5. A Project You’ve Worked On
Talk about a project that you’ve worked on. Explain the purpose of the project and why you feel that you were capable of adding value to it.
Be sure that you don’t make disparaging comments about a previous employer. Regardless of the good and bad aspects of the project, keep it civil.
6. Portfolio of Your Work
This is a great time to toot your horn and show off some of your past work. Especially if you’re involved with marketing and/or graphics, the best way to show off your expertise is by literally promoting all that you have done in the past.
Although you want to show off, be sure you provide a true presentation. Explain your thought process behind why you chose a specific font or went with a particular presentation method. Let the hiring team in on how your portfolio came to be the way that it is.
7. Favorite Course/Instructor
When you’re fresh out of college and don’t have a lot of work experience, you have to think outside of the box. Talk about a specific course you took in school or an instructor that you enjoyed.
Explain what you learned and why it was different. Showcase some of the unique ways that information was presented and why you’re glad you took the course/instructor.
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Understand the Presentation Requirements
There’s nothing worse than under-delivering an interview presentation. Once a company tells you that you will need to provide a presentation, there are some things that you should clarify.
Find out if there are interview presentation topics that you should focus on. This way, you can stay on topic.
Learn about the time limit that you’re given. Most companies will provide you with 5 or 10 minutes. You’ll want to ask about the time allotment because you don’t want to stop at 5 when they were expecting 10. You also don’t want to be cut short if they were expecting only 5 minutes.
You should also ask about the presentation delivery that they’re going to offer you. For example, will you have access to a projector and screen to deliver a PowerPoint? Will you have a dry erase board that you can draw on?
Ask the hiring manager for as much clarification as you need. Remember, asking these questions may be a part of the interview process, too.
5-Minute Presentation Ideas
When you are only given 5 minutes, you have to be clear about your topic. Keep it simple so that you can show your expertise without going in too many directions. It’s best to limit yourself to one or two main points.
Think about this. The average person speaks at a rate of 150 words per minute. You only have 750 words that you can speak.
You’ll actually need fewer words than this because you’ll want to pause periodically for emphasis. Plus, you’ll want to allow time for a quick Q&A.
Some ideas to help you:
- Use a PowerPoint so that you can stay on point
- Use photos and animation to make your point without having to say it all
- Time yourself to avoid running out of time
10-Minute Presentation Ideas
When you are given 10 minutes, you have plenty of time to dive into your topic. 10 minutes is actually quite a bit of time, so be sure you are thorough.
Here are a few ideas to help:
- Start with an opener, whether it’s a video or a storytelling moment
- Pause after a few minutes to ask a question or to shift focus
- Allow for plenty of material to fill those 10 minutes
As you get into some of the longer presentations, it can be difficult for the hiring team to remember all that you covered. Think about bringing a presentation folder for everyone that will be in the room. This way, they can follow along and have something to remember you by.
Create an Interesting Presentation for Your Upcoming Interview
You have to be sure that you provide enough information in your presentation to wow those who are doing the hiring. This means that they’re going to look at the interesting presentation topic you’ve chosen and how you’ve presented it.
Communication is a critical component in so many different jobs, from representatives to analysts to managers. You have to demonstrate your confidence and your capabilities, which include public speaking skills.
Here are a few tips to help you nail your interview presentation:
- Use innovative technology throughout
- Record your speech on a digital recorder and listen to it
- Bring a prop to use, such as a small dry erase board
- Practice your presentation in front of a mirror
Run through your presentation a few times. Write it out, time it, and practice it until you’re comfortable with every aspect.
You only get one interview with a hiring team of a company, so it’s critical that you deliver the best possible presentation. Give some thought to the company’s objectives so you can incorporate them into your presentation.
With the right interview presentation topics, you can be thoughtful and highlight your skills. Each presentation you make should be a learning experience. If you don’t get the first job you present for, you’ll know where to improve for the next one.
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