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Using Filler Words in Presentations: Right or Wrong?

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Have you ever realized the number of times you repeat a filler word like ‘ah’, ‘so’, ’em’ or ‘ugh’ in your routine conversation. And, in that case, even when you are attending a formal meeting or delivering an important presentation, do you feel that you are using filler words quite often? But, still fail to make out how to get rid of them?

Well! If all these concerns bother you, then read further for satisfactory solutions.

Getting nervous during the course of public speaking is obvious. But, if you intend to be a successful presenter then it is extremely essential to realize that your anxiety must not show up on your face. For this, you need to keep a check on the extent and type of filler words you are incorporating in your presentation.

Filler Words in Presentations

To begin with, avoid phrases like, ‘I think’, ‘Quite obvious’, ‘In fact’ or words like, ‘actually’, ‘basically’, ‘suppose’ and of course, those sounds inclusive of um, eh, etc., are very annoying. You may or may not accept it but, these fillers words signify your unpreparedness and lack of confidence. These leave an impression that you are trying to make up for a convincing reply. However, this kind of behavior needs to be corrected because it may result into a disinterested audience and eventually, the sure shot failure of your presentation. To help you surpass the above stated concerns, we have compiled a list of tips on appropriate usage of filler words in presentations.

1. Carry out rehearsals and record yourself so as to analyze the type and count of filler words you use. This is because there are words like theoretically, originally, etc., or sounds like hum that look inappropriate only if used in repetition.

2. As far as a novice is concerned, you should invest more in the art of pausing and chunking. This is a good technique to speak gradually in chunks by taking breaks at intervals so as to hide your distress.

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3. Reports suggest that these situations arise when we are under pressure. Thus, it is suggested to prepare well before the day of presentation and sensibly handle queries from your audience.

4. Even in the middle of your presentation, if you feel that you are sounding repetitive or the listeners are feeling bored then the best way of improvement is to buy time. Slow down a bit and pay attention to what they are expecting.

By now, you must know how to use filler words in your favor. Do not forget that these can prove to be killer words for your presentation, if not taken seriously. So, keep a check on your communication skills, stay confident and go for an amazing presentation.

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