How To Prepare For A Presentation.

Essay by izzud January 2006

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The first questions you should be asking yourself before you get up there are: What is my goal here? What is my message? All tantamount to objective of course. This is the macro view of the presentation now and the details will come later (unless your analysis of the objective happens to take place 10 minutes beforehand like my former colleague's. For your sake, I hope not).

Who's around you?

Who are they? How do you have to deliver your presentation, as a result? Your style will naturally differ if the big boss from the head office is in the house, or if the audience consists solely of people from your project team.

A top dog from upper management may just want bottom line facts, without the flash, while an audience of salespeople may want some fancy presentation with bells and whistles. It really depends from one corporation to the next.

A good friend of mine works for a big cosmetics firm and is an ace at presentations. His secret is being able to target his audience well. When a VP is in attendance, he gives him the good news fast, and his delivery is quick and to the point.

When his audience leans more towards sales and promotions, he takes a more informal and entertaining approach. But he always makes sure to deliver his message loud and clear.


Your entire presentation will ultimately boil down to the details: research, audiovisual and multimedia aids, your speech and intonation, and so much more. This is a wide net to cast, of course, but if the presentation is a potential feather in your career cap, then you have to pay attention to every aspect of your performance.

Research your topic and cover all of the possible angles in the time...