Talking Business: Tips For Speaker Success

by drjim on November 27, 2012

A business speech is unlike any other type of speech…

A business speech is unlike any other type of speech…
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Giving a speech in a business environment, specifically to a group of senior managers, can be one of the most difficult speeches that any of us will ever be called on to give. However, even this type of speech can be done smoothly and will allow you to be seen as an effective communicator if only you take the time to follow the following suggestions.

Talk About The Downside Of Your Proposal

One of the things that speakers seem to forget is that our audiences are made up of bright, smart people. What this means for you is that even as you are speaking, they are going to be mentally racing ahead of you.

What this means is that they are going to be picking apart what you are talking about and they’ll be realizing that there are costs and drawbacks to what you are discussing or proposing. If you don’t touch on these issues, then you’ll be leaving some very big unanswered questions in the minds of your audience when you are done talking.

The best way to deal with this issue is head on – discuss the downside of your proposal. However, since you are the one who is bringing it up, you get to control how it gets discussed. This means that you can discuss it in the most positive way possible. One clever way to go about doing this is to focus on just how expensive it would be for your audience to not take your advice or to not follow your plan. This might serve two purposes: you’ll deal with the downside of your proposal and you’ll convince your audience to accept your proposal.

Be Very, Very Specific

When you are dealing with a business audience, one of your biggest challenges will be to keep their attention. You are probably addressing them in an office environment and there are a number of other activities that will be competing with you for their attention (like smartphones).

What this means is that you need to make the effort to keep focused during your presentation – you are going to want to be very, very specific about what you are talking about. You want to make sure that at no time does your audience have to work to understand specifically what you are getting at.

This also means that no matter how tempting it may be, you need to be sure to not wander off subject. At the same time you need to make sure that you don’t start to talk in generalities – keep your presentation sharp and on target.

What All Of This Means For You

Making a business presentation to a group of senior managers can be both a nerve racking and a career limiting event. You can do this successfully; however, in order to be successful you need to do the right things and not do the wrong things.

You need to realize that your audience is going to be thinking about what you are saying and they will be able to quickly identify any downsides or costs associated with your presentation. Make sure that you deal with these issues right off the bat and do so in the most positive way possible. As you make your presentation, be as specific as possible – stay on target and be sure to not wander.

The ultimate goal of any speech that we give is to change the world in some way. Giving a business presentation to senior management allows us to make this happen if we take the time to do it correctly.

- Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World Public Speaking Skills™

Question For You: Do you think that there is a maximum time that your speech can run for when presenting to senior managers?

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Note: What we talked about are advanced speaking skills. If you are just starting out I highly recommend joining Toastmasters in order to get the benefits of public speaking. Look for a Toastmasters club to join in your home town by visiting the web site www.Toastmasters.org. Toastmasters is dedicated to helping their members to understand the importance of public speaking by developing listening skills and getting presentation tips. Toastmasters is how I got started speaking and it can help you also!

What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

Giving a speech in a business environment, specifically to a group of senior managers, can be one of the most difficult speeches that any of us will ever be called on to give. However, even this type of speech can be done smoothly and will allow you to be seen as an effective communicator if only you take the time to follow the following suggestions.

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