Become a more effective salesperson and a more influential manager with these simple Corporate Presentation Skills, Voice and Storytelling from Steve Jobs and TED talks speakers “People who know what they’re talking about don’t need Powerpoint,” said Steve Jobs, who was and perhaps always will be a master of corporate presentation skills and storytelling.
Who can forget his keynote presentations, when he took over the stage, swept audiences within the first few minutes, and turn them into converts by the end of his talk? From the words he used, to his voice and his body language, he schooled everyone on both public speaking and brand storytelling. Here are some tips on Corporate Presentation Skills, Voice and Storytelling to help you channel your inner Steve Jobs on stage.
THE PROBLEM WITH (MOST) POWERPOINTS We all know the torture of most business presentations and Powerpoints: slide after slide of graphs, long bulleted lists, and the speaker reading off the text in a dull, dead voice. The problem with this type of presentation is that nobody listens to it. You could have the best data and the most brilliant idea, but everyone in the room is just counting the minutes until you stop talking and they can leave.
The fact is that even corporate presentations are, at heart, storytelling. If you are in sales, you are telling the story of a brand: how a product can save the day and help customers have their happily ever after. If you are in finance, you are telling the story of your business growth: the problems you encountered, how it hurt your bottom line, what you can all do together to slay the dragon that is eating your profit. If you are a project manager, you are telling the story of your output: the business quest you were told to solve, and how you and your merry band of corporate warriors handled each obstacle that stood in your path.
So everyone – regardless of profession or position – should master Corporate Presentation Skills, Voice and Storytelling. Naturally, you should be supporting your story with facts, details, examples and action plans. This is, after all, still a business presentation not the Brothers Grimm. But the secret to engaging your audience, and getting them to buy into your proposal, is to adapt story telling methods into your Powerpoints and by sharpening your corporate presentation skills. Bottom line: Corporate Presentation Skills, Voice and Storytelling doesn’t negate your facts, it makes the facts more compelling.
- USE CONCRETE EXAMPLES
Stories hit an emotional nerve because we relate to the character and the conflict. So before you launch into 10+ slides of graphs and charts, grab attention with an anecdote. You can share a customer experience, or give a concrete example showcasing your product in action. Help the other people in the boardroom really get a grasp of the problem or goal that you are trying to solve.
- USE SIMPLE WORDS
Avoid technical and business jargon. This is especially true if you are presenting to a group from different departments or disciplines (ex: a leadcom meeting with representatives from finance, marketing, sales, customer service, and legal) or if you are selling a technical product to a consumer. Car salesmen know this Corporate Presentation Skills, Voice and Storytelling trick very well. They won’t tell a walk-in customer about engine and AI specs, they’ll go about concrete benefits like how much gas it consumes and how you can order a pizza through the dashboard. Translate technical terms into benefits everyone understands.
- Use the 5 C’s
John Bates – one of the world’s best communication trainers who coaches the CEOs of multinationals like Motorola and Johnson & Johnson as well as numerous TED talks speakers – says that one way to grab listeners in the first few minutes is to use the 5 C’s: Circumstance, Curiosity, Characters, Conversations and Conflict. Give an example, but only enough details to get their curiosity. Get them invested by characters (or your business problem) by helping them relate to it: “That happens to me too!” or “Wow, I really feel for that person.” Use conversational language, or even start a conversation with your audience by asking questions. Increase conflict by giving the pros and cons or factors that make the problem interesting and worth solving. By then, they’re invested enough to want to keep listening to you to the end of your presentation. Just like a really good Netflix movie, they’re hooked until the closing credits. Bates says that this kind of Corporate Presentation Skills, Voice and Storytelling approach is useful even when making business presentations, because no matter who you’re talking to or what you’re talking about, you’re still dealing with people – and people are emotional creatures. “None of the facts and figures matter until you have some sort of emotional connection.”
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Keeping these tips in mind ensures you feel more comfortable in front of crowds and more confident presenting your material. Remember that believing in yourself and in the information you are presenting is the key to delivering the perfect presentation. Working on these skills now, before you are up for promotion, shows off your ambition, and ensures you are ready when the perfect career opportunity arrives.
Here at Be The Voice, our coaches help clients to use their voice to convey thoughts, ideas and feelings more powerfully, and with confidence by our award winning, and effective Presentation Skills Training conducted locally in Singapore. Contact Us now to know more today.