First impressions "How should i open my presentation?" is a question we get asked often.…
I’ve got the radio on in the background. Then a Strauss Waltz comes on. I stop what I’m doing, and I listen.
I know classical music isn’t everyone’s cup of tea (as we say in the UK). But recently I’ve switched from BBC Radio 4 (mostly a talk station – politics, the arts etc) to Classic FM, playing popular classics. Mostly, I love it. It’s great in the background.
Much of the music I’m not that interested in, as I’m not a real devotee of classical music. But occasionally there’s a gem I know and like (like the Strauss) which catches me, and I pay attention. And then, at some point, even better, there’s a gem I’ve not heard before (like Danse Macabre).
But, probably, I have heard it before. I just wasn’t listening.
And that’s what can happen with business presentations. We present something, and our audience doesn’t listen. Perhaps we have the greatest idea, product, or proposition, and still they don’t listen. They’re not interested. And we wonder why.
Maybe it’s because we’re boring (is that possible?!); or it’s just not for them. But it may be about timing. If it’s not the right time for them, we won’t get through. Maybe they’re not in the mood; they’re not ready for what we have to say.
But that’s no reason not to present. It’s no reason to give up.
Because you won’t necessarily know beforehand. You may say just one thing that gets them listening, in a different way. You may be more interesting to listen to. Or maybe the timing is right, this time.
If you’re experienced in pitching and presenting you’ll know when the mood changes. They sit up and ask something like, ‘can you say more about that?’, or genuinely they want to know ‘how would that work?’. Then you know you’re onto something.
So my invitation is to keep presenting your ideas and your propositions, even though you’ve said it before. Even if it’s still not the right time, you’ll get better at saying it. And of course, it’s possible that it could be more impactful, interesting, or even more compelling…. And if you need some ideas about how to do that, get in touch….
Email me here, or call me on +44 (0) 7889 167486. Let’s have a conversation.