Community Seminars

Presentation Tips

How to Prepare for a Seminar

You may be nervous, but remember: You have valuable knowledge to share, and people respect your advice already. With a little preparation you can be successful; most of the work is already done for you, leaving you to focus on your patients.

How to prepare

Think about your audience and choose a topic that will be of interest to them. Hypertension could go over really well with a men’s social group at a golf club, whereas constipation may not be as relevant.

You are already a subject expert on all the topics, so just review and relax as you educate your patients. You do this every day on a one-on-one basis—think of this as simply a group counselling session.

Use this as an opportunity to market your business and tell attendees who you are, where you work and what you can do for them.

What you’ll need

You will need a computer with PowerPoint and a projector; many venues can provide these items for a small rental charge, if required. A presentation screen is ideal; however, a white wall or sheet can work in a pinch. Depending on your presentation style, you may find a wireless slide advancer useful, as you will be able to move around the room. Alternatively, you can get a colleague or helper to advance your slides for you.

If you chose to pass out the one-page patient sheet after the presentation, be sure to print enough copies in advance. Depending on the group, you could also use a sign-up sheet to collect email addresses to send out an electronic copy. Less printing means less expense and is environmentally friendly.

Other tips

  • Arrive early and ensure that all equipment (e.g., computer, DVD player, projector, etc.) is set up and working.
  • Look for ways to add an interactive element. For the hypertension presentation, for example, you could bring an electronic blood-pressure machine and give a demonstration of proper technique.
  • If you open up the floor to questions, and there is silence, be prepared to talk about and answer some of the common questions you hear at the pharmacy.
  • Tell a success story about yourself or someone at your pharmacy that relates to the medical problem you are presenting; be careful not to disclose any identifiable patient information.
  • Rehearse your talk, and run it by family members or friends who can give you advice; take their criticism constructively.
  • You’re nervous, you’re scared, you’re normal! Many people fear public speaking. Follow these tips and you’ll see how easy it can be.

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