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Four Keys to Successful Business Presentations

20121226 - successPresentations are a vital part of the business world. The fancy slideshow driven visual tools are used for a variety of tasks. They can illustrate points, assist in training goals, and help achieve sales success. Like other forms of business communications, presentations can be completed in person or electronically. Since electronic presentations are generally delivered via email or other online platform, they tend to offer a less personal and customized experience; however, this form of presentation is effective. Pete Briger’s presentations are a great example of how a top quality meeting can be conducted either in person or over the internet. Like other business traits there are a few keys for success and effect presentations.

Keep It Short

One of the easiest ways to lose the attention of any audience is to drone on too long. Everyone in an organization has a certain allotment of time, and everyone seeks to use that time in the best possible way. Keeping presentations as short as possible, yet still hitting the highlights of the purpose is necessary to keep the attention of the attendees. Electronic presentations also need to be short and effective largely for the same reason. Making the key points and following them up with information and details is usually the best path forward.

Stay On Topic

Colorful anecdotes, jokes, or off topic conversation is more of a challenge in personally delivered presentations. The desire to meander is only human nature. While engaging the audience is necessary in the begging and throughout the presentation, staying on topic and dedicating the bulk of the time to the matter at hand makes good sense. After all, gathering people to focus attention or close a sales deal only to focus on the local sports team is usually not the best way to win contracts or be selected to deliver the next presentation.

Ask Questions

Asking relevant questions throughout the presentation is a great way to engage the audience. Short focused questions that do not require an exchange with the provider enhance self-examination during the event. Using loaded questions that are easy for the audience to answer to themselves is a great way to keep the crowd looking forward to the next slide or segment of the meeting. In short, when the audience is looking to the presenter to answer the question posed, good things will happen.

Don’t Overdo the Slides

Visual aids are great when they are required, but too many slides during a presentation can cause a few issues. Primarily the boredom of the audience is a big risk, but the chance that the presenter will simply read from the slide instead of presenting information is very likely. Electronic presentations can utilize audio to win the attention of the audience, and personal presentations should use the slides to compliment the points being made.

In the end, utilizing slides well, asking questions, staying on topic, and keeping the presentation short and to the point are great guidelines for any business event. Making the best use of the appointment time and keeping the audience focused is necessary for the event to be successful. Driving home points and using data to support conclusions is the best way to keep the audience engaged and have the listeners begging for more. Great presentations rely on a fine balance between technology and delivery.



My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.

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