Presenting and giving feedback

Skills for Work employability videos

Most people find giving presentations nerve-wracking and get worried in the build-up to the event that something will go wrong. However, there are lots of tips to help you stay calm when the spotlight is on you and show your audience or potential employer that you are cool under pressure.

When it comes to feeding back to someone who has given a presentation, you have to be able to show tact and understand that criticism can often be taken personally if it is not carefully delivered. Criticism should be constructive, focus on positives and advise on how the presenter can improve, rather than dwelling on what they did badly.

Watch the video below from the Open Mind Skills for Work series and download the accompanying teacher’s notes and worksheet to help adult English learners improve their presentations and ability to give feedback.

More employability skills resources

Video Worksheet  Teacher's Notes


In this video we see Rosie, who works for fictional company Green and Pleasant, asking her colleague to listen to her presentation ahead of a big pitch. She is clearly nervous before and during the presentation. Although it may not be the best presentation, her colleague is not good at giving feedback and interrupts her several times with rude and personal comments that are not constructive and undermine Rosie’s confidence.

In the second part of the video, we see a different colleague demonstrating how the feedback should have been given. Helpful solutions such as using cue cards are suggested. The feedback focuses on positives such as what you should do rather than what you shouldn’t do.

The video comes with accompanying teacher’s notes offering a range of exercises from Pre-intermediate to Advanced levels of Open Mind (and Mind for American English learners).


Tips for improving your presentation skills

  • Use cue cards to help you stay on track
  • Make eye contact with the audience, use hand gestures and keep an open posture
  • Keep your presentation brief and concise
  • Show your passion for the topic
  • Add personal anecdotes to keep it interesting

Tips for feeding back

  • Be positive and objective so criticism doesn't feel like a personal attack
  • Suggest solutions to problems such as using cue cards or making eye contact
  • Help build confidence by saying all the things that were good about the presentation
  • Be specific with criticism so it is clear what the presenter needs to do to improve