Recently I wrote an article outlining some of Matt Handal’s ideas about making your proposal document zing.
Now you are at the short-list stage, and here a speaking coach becomes your best ally if you want to get it right. While you may be speaking for an audience of three or 15 rather than a convention hall, the basic rules for good speech preparation apply for proposal deliveries — especially when you consider the economic impact of a successful presentation.
Joey Asher outlines some of the basic “golden rule” ideas you should consider when preparing your presentation. Think about them — and consider them to be a kind of check-list of do’s and don’ts in preparing your presentation.
- Would you like it if the presenter began with background information about his or her firm?
- Or would you prefer that he dump the background garbage and talk only about your project and its challenges?
- How would you like it if someone’s presentation had 15 major points?
- Or would prefer three takeaways?
- Would you like it if someone droned through their detailed scheduling or estimating process?
- Or would you prefer they address your project’s scheduling or budget challenges?
- Would you like sitting through 45 PowerPoint slides?
- Or would eight slides be better?
- What would you think of a speaker that wouldn’t take a stand on an issue about your project?
- Or would you prefer a simple answer?
- Do you think that there is a single human on Earth (and I’m including your mother) that wants to hear you speak for an hour?
- Or would you prefer a shorter pitch where you can interrupt and ask questions?
- And would you prefer long answers or short answers?
- Do you like it when presenters seem like they haven’t practiced?
- Do you like it when presenters seem bored?
There’s a lot in that list. But the message is clear. Put yourself in the place of your audience and ask the simple question: What would you want to experience if you were receiving, rather than giving your presentation.