The worthy but dull way to present…

That’s a harsh headline since I’m really just setting you up for its sequel, The Worthy and Best Way to Present which follows in a thrice. But I was reading this form the Harvard Business Review:

Addressing the individuals concerns of stakeholders in the room will go a long way toward winning you allies. “If the finance person frets about keeping expenses under control, discuss expense numbers,” says [Raymond] Sheen [author of the HBR Guide to Building Your Business Case]. “If you have someone who is interested in growth in Asia, show how your project helps the company grow in the region.” Research past presentations and the outcomes to make sure you have your bases covered. If there are “issues that other projects have had, you should have an answer for those,” says Sheen. You might also consider giving decision makers a preview of your presentation ahead of time, and asking for their input. You can then salt their recommendations into your presentation, which will increase their investment in your success. “When you let people feel like they co-created your content, then they’ll not only support you but then they’ll feel empowered as ambassadors,” says Duarte. “They’ll feel like they’re representing their own idea.”

The Right Way to Present Your Business Case – Carolyn O’Hara, Harvard Business Review (21 July 2014)

And, sorry, O’Hara, but my mind wandered very quickly there.

The whole piece is a bit dry but its advice is solid, if ironic: reach out to people more, communicate more and avoid being a bit dry.

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