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Presentation Skills Interview Questions

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    Presentation skills are essential in most organizations. Regardless of job roles, employees must deliver reports and presentations to seniors and clients and propose to the management. Thus, presentation skills are integral components of many job roles. The recruiter must ask relevant questions during the interview to find an applicant with stellar presentation skills. Thus, presentation skills interview questions can help identify the adeptness of the candidate vis-à-vis presentation proficiency.


    Top 15 Presentation Skills Interview Questions


    Behavioral Interview Questions to Evaluate Presentation Skills

    1. Can you describe a recent successful experience in making a speech or presentation?


    Ans. Presentations involve public speaking. Thus, many individuals, including the most talented interviewees, might not be proficient in public speaking. But, most beginners to advanced roles need public speaking and the ability to propose ideas, present reports, and impart information. Therefore, the recruiter must go the extra mile and choose a candidate with appropriate presentation skills. The question sample above can help the hiring manager understand how well-versed the applicant is in public speaking.


    If the candidate cites an example from the distant past, such as their college or first job, the interviewer may infer inexperienced in delivering presentations. However, if the experience is recent, they can gather that the candidate prepares and deliver presentations. Similarly, it is an excellent sign if the candidate has experience giving official presentations in large meetings.


    After the candidate’s answer, the recruiter should follow up with questions about the experience, like the audience, how the applicant handled the counter-questions, etc. Some green flags to look for include confidence, honesty, and enthusiasm.


    2. How do you prepare before a presentation?


    Ans. An excellent follow-up behavioral question. Public speaking and good communication help deliver a successful presentation. The task also involves preemptive exercise and research. For example, an individual might have stellar public speaking abilities. However, if the presentation’s content is hollow, it makes little sense.


    The question, hence, helps evaluate the dedication level of the candidate. Ideally, the applicant must specify comprehensive research to prepare the presentation’s content, such as books, journals, surveys, and consultations with seniors. Then, they should explain how they rehearsed by memorizing essential aspects to inform.


    3. Tell about when you made an impromptu presentation with little to no preparation.


    Ans. The question helps the recruiter gauge the applicant’s ability to think independently. Unexpected or impromptu presentations require a calm approach to a problem head-on. Ideally, the candidate should draw on a real-life example. It should be followed by what they learned from the experience. It is a red flag if the candidate complains or comes across as arrogant.


    4. How do you prepare to speak before a large audience?


    Ans. This question helps the hiring manager understand how the applicant prepares to speak before a large crowd. Even the most prolific public speakers can jitter on the stage. But everyone has their unique ways of calming down nerves. The applicant’s answer should be concrete and process-driven. For example, it is a good sign if the candidate talks about the tricks they follow to maintain composure.


    On the other hand, if the interviewee regurgitates the same-old statement, like “I practice”, it is not impressive enough. Instead, the applicant should be talking about their practice. It is a good sign if the recruiter notes a unique way the applicant rehearses before a big presentation.


    5. Can you describe a memorable presentation you attended? Why did you like it?


    Ans. This question helps gauge the observation skills and priorities of the candidate vis-à-vis public speaking and presentation. The applicant’s answer communicates what they notice when listening and watching another present.


    Answers may be elaborate yet specific. Interviewers must note mentions of unique pointers on what captivated them the most about the presentation. For example, audio-visual aid, instructiveness, breaks, etc., are good signs.


    6. What would you do if the audience looked bored with the presentation?


    Ans. It is an excellent behavioral question. It helps the recruiter understand how experienced the interviewee is in their presentation skills. In addition, it also reveals the applicant’s alertness and presence of mind. On average, viewers of a presentation have an attention span of merely 10 minutes. Therefore, the presenter must know how to navigate such a tricky terrain.


    For instance, while answering, the applicant may mention using live polls or quizzes to increase audience engagement. Similarly, the applicant must know that it is best to introduce critical aspects of the presentation at the beginning and subsequently delve into details. Such simple knowledge can improve a PowerPoint presentation by leaps and bounds.


    7. What are your favorite tools for creating a presentation?


    Ans. In 2023, the workforce must be skilled in various presentation tools. More than having experience in PowerPoint is required. The candidate must know about new-age digital programs like SlideShare, Prezi, Google Slides, Slide, etc. The question helps the recruiter understand how the applicant remains updated regarding presentation technology. A candidate with experience in a few unique presentation tools is a green flag.


    Role-specific Interview Questions to Evaluate Presentation Skills


    1. What is PowerPoint? Why do companies use it?


    Ans. The most basic yet, role-specific questions. Applicants skilled in presentation delivery must know MS PowerPoint. It is the most popular presentation software, with over 500 million users worldwide. Thus, the question helps the recruiter understand the applicant’s knowledge of how they can use PowerPoint.


    The applicant’s answer should be simple. They must be able to define the basic functionalities of PowerPoint. Alternatively, the response may include a personal twist, like, their favorite MS PowerPoint feature.


    Similarly, their response to the second part of the question can bring to light their experience and knowledge of PPT benefits.


    2. Do you know how to show your PPT online to other viewers?


    Ans. Most employees work remotely or in a hybrid mode, so it is important to know the technical nitty-gritty of PowerPoint and other similar programs. An employee regularly might have to deliver presentations to the team online. Thus, the hiring manager must know if the interviewee can set up and present a PowerPoint online.


    Ideally, the applicant should mention the steps involved in sharing the PPT and presenting it to remote viewers. The candidate’s confidence will reveal whether they have experience delivering the presentation online.


    3. How do you convert a PowerPoint slide into a PDF?


    Ans. PowerPoint presentations often have to be converted into textual documents for future records. Therefore, company employees must know how to convert a PPT slide or an entire slide show into PDF. The feature is handy when disseminating to clients or external teams who might not have the PowerPoint program installed.


    In addition, it is a secure way to share confidential information in a PPT, as PDFs are not easily editable. The above question helps the recruiter understand if the applicant knows the feature. Ideally, the candidate should list the steps in converting the PowerPoint slide into a PDF.


    4. Do you have experience in Canva?


    Ans. In 2023, presentations are not simply about PowerPoints. Various innovative tools easily available in the market can elevate a presentation’s content and aesthetics. One important tool to ace any presentation is Canva. It comprises pre-made templates that help streamline the design process. Moreover, the templates facilitate the content’s quality too.


    When design aspects of a presentation are readily available, the individual may invest more time and energy in the quality of the PPT’s content and their public speaking skills. The question, thus, helps the recruiter gauge if or how experienced the interviewee is in Canva for presentations. It also shows whether the interviewee is updated on the latest professional technology.


    5. Do you know how to use SlideShare?


    Ans. Another important role-specific question. Candidates with the best presentation skills are not simply proficient with MS PowerPoint. Ideally, they should know about novel innovations like SlideShare. In 2023, SlideShare is more important than ever, as it helps upload PowerPoints privately or publicly. The slide decks can be viewed on the company website or embedded on other sites.


    SlideShare is crucial for marketing, content hosting, brand building, etc. So, when assessing the presentation-skills proficiency of a candidate, it is good to know if they have experience in SlideShare.


    6. How do you lock a presentation for views by specified individuals?


    Ans. Many job roles, such as administrative executives, create PowerPoint presentations with private and sensitive information like client or P&L data. Thus, these PowerPoint documents must be secure. One way to ensure confidentiality is by locking the PPT, so the recipient can type in the password to view its content.


    It also helps ensure that only intended recipients view its contents. The feature is important in each organization and its workspace. Candidates with extensive presentation skills and experience are aware of this feature. The question helps the recruiter understand if the interviewee knows some advanced features of PowerPoint. It also shows how sincere they are about privacy and confidentiality.


    7. What is the role of a document inspector? How do you use the feature in MS PowerPoint?


    Ans. PowerPoint files are often shared with other businesses, clients, and external teams. However, when sharing PPT documents, most employers prefer to remove all personal data before distribution. The document inspector feature is an intuitive and easy way to check the Powerpoint presentation and preemptively delete any personal information of the creator. A candidate adept in presenting information using PPTs must know about the method and its reasoning.


    8. How do you embed a Microsoft Excel chart in a presentation?


    Ans. The question helps the recruiter understand if the interviewee can use different Microsoft tools to make presentations more effective and powerful.


    In most presentations, much data, including tables or figures, must be shown to quantify statements. Instead of switching to an Excel sheet, adding tables to the PPT is available to compile textual and tabulated information.


    InThe End


    The article sets presentation skills interview questions that help a recruiter identify confident candidates with fine public speaking abilities. The questions also help recognize applicants with excellent interpersonal skills like quick thinking and problem-solving.


    Regardless of the job role, the presentation skills interview questions mentioned above can help a hiring manager make the right pick, and hire individuals with the best presentation skills, to ensure the company’s success.


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