Toastmasters helps you deliver better Business Presentations
Every day, employees of various companies around the world find themselves in career-defining speaking situations. Presentations like these often involve high stakes and are presented to busy people with the power to influence careers.
Different business presentations can make or break your career. The technical briefing, a straightforward presentation to inform, can cause trouble if you lose your audience. For the proposal, you must advocate an idea, product or course of action, and convince others to agree. You may have to present complicated material to a nontechnical audience. To help with job jitters, professional panic or talk trauma, join your local Toastmasters Club.
When you present a proposal or a pitch, you are trying to do more than simply inform – you are trying to persuade.
A proposal seeks to stimulate action or acceptance of an idea. Here are some examples: A company’s research and development chief proposes that top management authorize additional funding for a key project. An architect presents designs for a condominium complex. An advertising agency director proposes a new ad campaign to a prospective client. An insurance sales representative pitches the idea of a company-sponsored bowling team to the owner of a bowling alley.
In all of these cases, your speech must include sections designed to inform. It often involves a discussion on dollars spent versus gains made. And the gains may be high-tech in nature, such as an improved insulin pump for diabetics. For such situations, some technical information must be included. Yet, the objective of the presentation is to sell a product, a concept or a set of recommendations. By combining your technical expertise with the ability to present proposals that get positive results, you’ll generate many opportunities for visibility and career advancement.
Follow these four steps to prepare:
- Determine your purpose.
- Analyze your audience and determine its needs.
- State your main message and support it.
- Urge the audience to take definite action.
You must determine the effect you want your presentation to have on the audience. Are you selling a product or service? Recommending a course of action? Striving for agreement or approval? Be specific about what you want your proposal to accomplish.
Analyze your audience, and then create your main message to address their wants and needs. Be sure to translate the features of your product, service, idea or recommendation into audience benefits – and target the benefit to fit that audience. For example, if a company’s need is for a quality product with excellent durability, these are the qualities you would highlight as opposed to emphasizing cost savings.
For more tips on Organizing Your Proposal, Using Visual Aids and Answering Questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org