A few days ago, I was assigned by my team to lead a pitch presentation for a new company we were in the process of building.
When I was told the pitch would last for 3mins, I thought…”You know, its just an elevator pitch. I’ve done this a million times. This cannot be that hard. Right?”
Well the things is, even though I had done a lot of pitches and presentations in the past, I had not done THIS particular pitch and so if anything, I needed to practice and perfect my lines to the point where I knew the words by heart and sounded great enough to convince anyone who listened to me speak that day.
Did the presentation go the way I had thought in my mind it would without preparation…*sigh* lets just say that it didn’t.
So in this video, I’ll be sharing some of the lessons I learned from my mistakes and hope you don’t get to make the same mistake on your next presentation too.
Lets get into it.
Number 1: Define Your Story
When I think about fantastic presentations, I think about taking an audience on a journey. Many times a successful pitch really looks like a piece of magic, almost like a miracle — because people tend to see the world differently after you are done speaking.
And so before you do any work on that presentation, ask yourself about how you want people to feel when you are done talking and then start from there.
Number 2: Prepare, prepare, prepare
Whether its a 1minute pitch or a 1hour speech, if you do not prepare well ahead of time, chances are you may miss out on the most important points and blow the entire opportunity.
Read your notes over and over again. Check and confirm that all your electronic devices are working. And if you live in Africa or developing Asia, make sure you’ve got enough electricity to carry you through out that presentation before the lights go out. As I write this article, I’ve got my inverter on right now… *shrug*.
Number 3: Relax, buffer your confidence and deliver a great presentation.
The truth is, there is only so much you can plan for. After you have done all your thinking, preparations and praying, go on stage knowing that you have done your best work and leave the rest to your audience to decide.
You may get it right the first time or you may totally blow it. Either way, no matter the outcome, its a great opportunity for you to grow.
These are my top 3 tips on presentations. I hope it helps you improve in this area of development.