Selling yourself is a key part of commercial life.
If you need to make a business presentation you may find these useful hints and tips could make your next presentation fly.
Why are you presenting?
This is the first thing that you will need to ask yourself. Why are you presenting? Is there an important message to give or are you simply making up numbers. Are you looking to raise your personal profile or are you standing in for someone who has dropped out? Are you comfortable with your subject matter or have you been given the topic of the presentation? If you have serious doubts now is the time to start considering if you need to be speaking or if you can start to change the topic of the presentation.
Block out some time in your diary.
This is one of the most common mistakes that we see a lot of. For an important business presentation, we suggest that you block out around 20 hours of your time. This is how much time it will take to do a good job - in research, planning and most importantly in rehearsing. If you haven't got that much space in the diary then you will simply have to move something out, or you will have to work in evenings or weekends. This is what most of us end up doing.
Your competitive advantage
We have sat through thousands of business presentations - and many can be quite boring affairs. The one common factor that we see a lot is bullet points. These are a very ineffective way of communicating. If there is only one piece of advice that you could follow from this site - it would be to use pictures rather than bullet points. Business research shows that the chances of achieving your objectives increase from around 33% up to around 66%. And that is a major competitive advantage.
This is an absolute must. You may be quick-witted and like to ad lib, but I'll tell you one thing. Learn your speech word for word and you will be able to ad lib better! Remember the comedian Frankie Howard with his bumbling delivery - "ooh now where was I?" Every one of those remarks was carefully scripted and practiced for hours in front of a mirror.
We see no end of people who spend hours poring over their bullet points but fail to rehearse properly for the presentation.
The old adage is as true now as it has always been.
"If you fail to prepare, you are prepared to fail"